October is upon us which means it’s time for spooks and scares, and video games are the perfect way to get that experience. Take a look at some games we hope make a return in the gaming world to, you know, make our editors wet their pants.
When we say return we are not talking about reboots, but rather a return to form. Some of these listed below have seen recent sequels, but they've strayed pretty far from the series' roots (or only launched on mobile platforms). Whether it's another sequel or spin-off, it'd be great to see these games return in the ways we remember them.
This is the game that provided the impetus for this article. FEAR was a game that really sparked WB Games into making quality titles and becoming a major developer. This was their big game before Batman and we loved it. The first two games have the perfect mix of terrifying environments and action elements to get your blood pumping. One moment you’re in a heated gun battle with enemies, the next minute you are walking through a kids classroom getting scared of every little sound. FEAR was honestly a great franchise right down to the end. The story was engaging and the gameplay was near perfected by the third title.
The end of FEAR 3 kind of left things open for more and they could continue on with the same characters very easily (I won’t spoil it for anyone who hasn’t played it), or the franchise could take a turn and introduce new characters with a different story. The important thing for the team to remember is what made the first two games so great, fear. The third title in the series wasn’t scary in the slightest, but it had extremely good combat mechanics. So if they could find a way to blend the two, the next FEAR could be a FPS GOTY contender.
When PS3 first released we all had a single game to really dump all of our free time into, Resistance: Fall of Man. The first game in the series had a really great atmosphere and many players will remember the thrilling online component, but the single player was rather great too. A mix of sci-fi and horror, the game explored a world that had roughly three different stories intertwining within it. While it seemed like Nathan Hale was simply on a mission to save humankind, there were also intel items spread throughout the campaign that hinted at even more going on.
In the follow up games, Hale got his voice, and then eventually replaced with a character that had even more traits to love. Insomniac found a way to take a brute and give him character. The bad news is, that much like FEAR 3, Insomniac decided to remove a lot of the horror out of the third game and go for a more action oriented adventure. Online was also stripped down and made into a “Call of Duty like” clone, which fans were not fond of, and the game didn’t do well. If Insomniac could return to the elements that made Fall Of Man so great, with the multiplayer of Resistance 2 and the characters from Resistance 3, we could be in for a thrill ride.
Anyone else noticing a trend? A horror game comes out, it picks up steam, but by the third release it’s more action oriented than anything. Dead Space is no exception. While 3 was rather good, it was too action prone to be a great horror game, and thus the franchise vanished. Luckily Visceral Games has stated multiple times that they would love to return to the franchise, but it seems EA has other plans. They have the developer teaming up with DICE to make several new unannounced titles.
What made Dead Space so great was the twist to horror, and an amazing blend of sci-fi. Instead of shooting heads, you shot off limbs and there were plenty of guns to choose from to destroy enemies. Ammo was scarce enough to make you really scared to enter the next room, and sometimes running for your life was a better option than duking it out. The environments were thrilling, and the series needs to be played with headphones. The franchise should have absolutely no problems returning as long as they stay away from making it purely an action oriented title.
We saw just how awesome this franchise could be when Kojima took over and gave us the best demo we ever played….Then things fell apart and Konami hasn’t put together plans to bring Silent Hill back. In fact Konami hasn’t even come remotely close to mentioning the series since Kojima departed and Silent Hills was scrapped.
The franchise has some of the most iconic characters in all of the industry, and bringing them to life again is a must. The series is still strong, regardless of who makes it. The problem is Konami has no real interest in making actual games anymore beyond Metal Gear spin-offs we didn’t ask for. So who knows what will happen.
There is something about running around with a camera as your only “weapon” that makes this series so much scarier than other games. The franchise does so many things right to make you scared, but the best thing about the series is the fact you’re forced to head straight on into what is scaring you. Taking snapshots of enemies, yet also trying to avoid them. It was simply brilliant work.
The series also takes several inspirations from Japanese horror films and blends them all into one big nightmare. I personally had trouble sitting through the games with how creepy and messed up the games can get, but that’s what made them so fantastic. If only one franchise on this list returned, I’d have to go with this one (and please put it on a console we actually own). If you want to give the series a try, the best bet is probably Crimson Butterfly.
Overall, legitimate horror games have seen a resurgence as of late. Resident Evil and The Evil Within show us survival horror is still a thing, while Doom brought us ass kicking in Hell. Now we need to see some of our favorite franchises return with these amazing new mechanics the industry has offered us. Let us know, what are some horror games you hope make a return to gaming?