FFD: What makes a game scary?

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Today is Halloween, a holiday we don’t really celebrate here at the Southern tip of Africa, but we try have fun with anyway. Here then is your obligatory Halloween-themed FFD.

Scary games have certainly made quite a comeback in the last generation, with awfully frightening titles like  Amnesia, Penumbra  and Slenderman paving the way for new generation scares by way of The Evil Within, and Alien Isolation – both out this month. They each take a different approach to scares. The Evil Within takes the gore porn approach, very much like Hostel or Saw, blended with creepy, otherworldly monsters from horrors of yore. Alien: Isolation, meanwhile, goes for pure tension; the sort of pants-wetting, white-knuckled frights brought about by something unseen; a terror in the darkness.

Oh, and if you haven’t tried it, you really should check out the Silent Hills demo, called P.T on your PS4 if you have one. While it does  sometimes employ cheap shock tactics, most of its scares are the spine-tingling, chilling sort.

Do games that throw death, torture and dismemberment at you give you the creeps, or do those horrible ones that have background sounds of babies crying, and other ghastly unseen terrors make you cry out for your mommy? What is it that makes games, or even movies, scary for you?

Last Updated: October 31, 2014

Geoffrey Tim

Editor. I'm old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time - they were capable of being masterpieces. I'm here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

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