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back to article Slideshow: A History of Horror in 20 Scary Games

Complimented on the cobwebs, skeletal remains and general stench of death in my flat the other day, I suddenly remembered it was Halloween this week, so here's another nostalgic slideshow to celebrate. This time it's a collection of 20 pant-cacking games, titles that raised the hair on the back of our necks or at least raised …

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FAIL

Foolishly, I was expecting that there would actually be a slideshow here

Silly old me

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Re: Foolishly, I was expecting that there would actually be a slideshow here

perhaps THAT is the actual horror - what you came to see has... [eery music] vanished! [/eery music]

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Holmes

Re: Foolishly, I was expecting that there would actually be a slideshow here

That more a yawn-inducing "Tales of the Unexpected" horror (US readers: Twilight Zone), than a true Carrie's-Grave trouser-filler.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Foolishly, I was expecting that there would actually be a slideshow here

Apologies everyone, we had a couple problems in the back-end. Oooh er. Nothing a quick fiddle can't fix. All good now. :-)

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Joke

Imaginatively scary?

Is the slideshow supposed to be made extra-scary by leaving it all up to our imagination?

(and yes I know about the send a correction link - I did that before posting this)

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Despite the link omission, the term 'pant-cacking' was worthy of a smile. Might try and slot it casually in to conversation this afternoon.

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Facepalm

And El Reg might try and casually slot a slideshow into the article.

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Maybe a date for each game would also be good. See when the most horrific of games was released.

As for games that should have been included. Personally I actually found some parts of the original DMC to be terrifying. Those mannequins in the first room gave me the heebies.

As for any other scary games? I think you got most of them, at least most of the ones I can remember.

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(Written by Reg staff)

If you look below each picture, there is the release date, the developer and the platforms it was launched on. :-)

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And thus my blindness shows no bounds!

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Anonymous Coward

Erm..

Where is fear? That was a well made game designed around creepy. Granted there was gore but it complemented the horror instead of being the horror

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Erm..

It is in there? Certainly gave me the creeps, so I couldn't omit it.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Erm..

my bad. Cant use a simple slideshow! Doh

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Unhappy

Half Life 2

Personally it's the head crabs wot done it for me. I know the game as a whole isn't that scary but I freaking hate head crabs :( and by extension most of Ravenholm

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Re: Half Life 2

The black poison headcrabs being the scariest. I read that during testing Valve found that subjects would freak when they heard the hissing rattle of a poison headcrab and turn all their attention towards hunting it down. They got so focussed they'd completely ignore anything else, even though a poison headcrab can't actually kill you on its own.

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Unhappy

A shame

You missed Pathalogic and Ice Pick Lodge's most recent creepfest The Void. Hearing the Brothers speak in their hellish metallic voices, not to mention what they *look* like certainly gives me the heebie-jeebies.

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Slideshow?! BOO! HISS!

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Happy

Slideshow is by far the scariest game I've encountered... it has its place here!

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Silent Hill 2 is there.

So all is well.

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The Lurking Horror?

OK, so I guess Infocom games aren't known for their crowd-pleasing screenshots, but surely this was the very first horror game on a computer?

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Go

Re: The Lurking Horror?

"OK, so I guess Infocom games aren't known for their crowd-pleasing screenshots [...]"

Easy enough to get around-- just post a photo of the MIT campus at the time, as that's what GUE Tech was a thinly disguised copy of...

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The original Doom ? When you could hear the monsters, but not see them...

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Happy

Original doom .. pah

the reboot/remake Doom 3 had me seriously creeped out.... especially the bit where you can hear children crying in the walls, then laughter and whispered 'save me'

But if you're gonna give system shock 2 a mention, you may as well mention SS1 too

For the time, a definite "do I save here and resume in daylight? " kinda game

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How could you forget

The Alien Quake mod. Best played with headphones on and lights off for a truly pant-filling experience.

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ok so wheres the game that scared the crap outa me when i played it.. astounding audio effects made this game an absolute pants filler... the game.. clive barkers undying

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And my flatmate...

We scared the bejesus out of him whilst he was playing it in his room, creeping round his door and jumping out at him. He was so scared he jumped off his chair and landed on his arse.... Good Times....

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I can't take any Clive barker game seriously because when I hear the name, I immediately think "South African Soccer Coach from the 1990's".

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Anonymous Coward

Yes, there was one bit I still remember, the Chapel with the ghost monks, every other bit of the game I explored thoroughly, but that section I got out as quickly as possible :)

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Devil

7th Guest? Seriously?

The only fear there was that this was all we could ever expect from the CD format...

Alien Trilogy (Acclaim, PS1)? Splatterhouse (Namco, Arcade)? Cursed Mountain (Deep Silver, Wii)?

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This post has been deleted by its author

Someone needs to mention Thief

They really do, the first game scared me witless - the bits in the haunted cathedral.

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Devil

Re: Someone needs to mention Thief

Have you played the third game? The game is supposed to be a first-person sneaker where darkness is your friend, and someone dropped a survival horror level into the middle of it. ("The Cradle".) Awesome.

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Ru
Facepalm

Re: Someone needs to mention Thief

I don't mean to sound ungrateful, but this eye... its completely blind.

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Anonymous Coward

DarkSeed - Amiga... pretty spooky!

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"Limbo", especially the audio

See http://limbogame.org/ (winner of a 'Best Horror' award from IGN).

More about the audio here:

https://www.develop-online.net/features/1434/Heard-about-Limbo

("How easily the ‘nothingness’ – the ‘notional silence’ – could have been tromped on and thereby the intensity and involvement diminished.")

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WTF?

Ammensia

How can you miss Ammensia? http://www.amnesiagame.com

There is truly a scary game.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Ammensia

Didn't glance through the whole slideshow? Amnesia is there bud, it's the second to last slide. ;-)

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Anonymous Coward

Not a horror per se, but S.T.A.L.K.E.R gave me more than a few jumpy moments, especially with the poltergeists.

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You missed

Diablo, 1997 (?)

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What? No place for...

Call of Cthu. . . Call of Chut. . . Call for Tchu. . . Call for Cutchyhoolahoops?

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Amnesia was a very good, and different play. The water monster chases inspired greater fear/creepiness than any other game or movie for me!

Must be played in the dark, gamma down and with surround sound!

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Alert

Why Res Evil 2 not 1. I found the original far more scary than the second one. The camera angles were brilliantly (if annoyingly) positioned for max surprise. Made me jump out of my seat more than once.

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(Written by Reg staff)

It's all subjective, I guess. I found RE2 far scarier and it's definitely my favourite RE in the series.

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That's the thing with Resident Evil 1 - nothing happens and then you jump out of your skin and then you kill a dog and then some more nothing continues to happen.

Trying to find my way out of the alternative school in Silent Hill 1 - my god. Armed only with a torch and I can hear something shuffling about but I can't tell if it's down the corridor or up the stairs and I am absolutely bricking it; playing with a mate in the room, we both opted to switch it off, turn the light on and have a cup of tea. The claustrophobic fear that game generated was genuinely terrifying.

It helped if you'd had a smoke, of course.

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Devil

Realms of the Haunting

While it's certainly an old game, I remember when I first played Realms of the Haunting - scared the crap out of me at the time!

Admittedly nowadays it's a bit tame in comparison to more modern games, but so is everything that old.

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Happy

Dead Space on Playbook

On a plane, with a noise-cancellation headset on... spilled a drink thanks to that one :-)

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Doom3?

Really, how could anyone be scared by that game, considering that an hour in, the repetitive boredom had already induced a semi-coma?

The Archvile in Doom2, now THAT gave us the definition of "pant-cacking". The alert sound made my skin crawl.

And no mention of the HORROR that was DukeNukem Forever?

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Re: Doom3?

I thought Doom 3 was scary. Very grateful that the new version allows you to keep that flashlight on...

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Anonymous Coward

gabriel knight

New Orleans, voodoo, went for atmosphere and a slow build rather than shocks IIRC

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Flame

Zork: Nemesis

Scariest thing I've ever played.

Not so much for actual chills produced by the game, but for the shock horror of what they were doing to the Zork series.

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