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reader discussion

Reader Discussion: What Elements Are Crucial For An Enjoyable Horror Game?

by Mike Futter on Oct 31, 2013 at 01:28 PM

Earlier today, we asked you if you like to play horror games. Your answers were as varied and enjoyable as usual.

Some of you go all out, turn off the lines, put on the headset and plunge ahead. Others will tackle them with a friend on hand or the lights on. Some of you avoid them altogether. 

Here’s a small sample of what you had to say:

Top flight titles are hard to come by, and old standards have grown stale, but there's no denying the appeal of early Silent Hill or Resident Evil games, or the two Condemned titles (Fatal Frame deserves mention, too). That said, The Evil Within is promising. - Kyle Wadsworth

I remember playing the first clock tower in my room without any lights on. After a couple hours of that I had to go over to a friends house and I remember constantly looking into the rearview mirror expecting something to just jump out at me. Games, even with the way graphics are now, just don't seem to have that same effect. - Empren

My brain doesn't need anymore suggestions on how to scare the crap out of me.  So no, I don't play horror games. - Olive

Tried playing Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs by myself with headphones plugged in and the lights turned out...Lasted about 20 minutes before I had to exit out due to sheer terror >.< Played again without the headphones and the lights on a few days later, lasted about 45 minutes that time. I'm gonna try playing again today in the spirit of Halloween, let's see how long I last this time... - Opposedcrow88

If by play you mean curl up into a ball and cry, then yes. - Esteban Escobar

Now we want to know what you think are the important elements of a good horror game. Do you want creepy sounds? Are you partial to limited fields of view and claustrophobic cameras? Maybe it’s all about the enemy design.

Let us know what you want out of a horror experience in the comments. Have a happy and safe Halloween, everyone!