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Gaming The History of Survival Horror Games

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Lizard, 10 Jun 2010.

  1. Lizard

    Lizard @ Scan R&D

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  2. crazyceo

    crazyceo New Member

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    Alan who?

    Sorry, I just had to follow on from the death in PC gaming thread when it was announced it wouldn't be launched on the PC.

    The game that really gave me a kicking was the first AVP. I had 5.1 sound for the first time and stupidly started playing with the lights off. Christ, did I pap myself playing that. It wasn't long before it was switched off and I was curled up in bed clutching my misses while I was sucking my thumb. She wasn't impressed and still isn't to this day but that's enough of me, not impressing my wife!
     
  3. 13eightyfour

    13eightyfour Formerly Titanium Angel

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    Survival horror games like i remember are a dying genre imo. The game should be about the atmosphere, silent hill/resi1, Had oddles of it which lead to quite a few **** your pants moments.

    The recent resi games have completely lost the plot, i suppose you could argue that they couldnt carry on flogging the same old story but thats what made the game. There are still some japanese gems though but generally the whole genre has been dumbed down.
     
  4. zr_ox

    zr_ox Whooolapoook

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    Like the article a lot, I remember Resident Evil 1 so fondly. Walking down the corridor when the rabid dogs jumped throught the windows...Oh man that made me jump. Then later in the game where your attacked by a hunter which was creeping around in one of the hallways.

    L4D should be mentioned, there have been many moment of sheer despiration experienced in that one, only in MP of course...SP is meh!
     
  5. Guinevere

    Guinevere Mega Mom

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    How come no mention of L4D? Maybe not classic survival horror, but surely a branch?
     
  6. DbD

    DbD Member

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    +1 for L4D - does the co-op element very well, although it's not that scary (well maybe it was in the beginning but I'm hardened to it now).

    System Shock 2 should have been in there - that was a scary game mainly because the zombies were really tough and you didn't have enough bullets to just kill everything. The sound was great so you'd hear something coming and then think - oh no!
     
  7. CardJoe

    CardJoe Freelance Journalist

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    I wouldn't say L4D is Survival Horror at all, to be honest. It's non-stop shooting, through and through. There's no real frights or tension and the game isn't characterised by the elements which would usually define a Survival Horror. Instead, it's characterised more by the element of a team-based shooter - it's inherently social and strategic by design.

    Survival Horror games are usually defined by the way they move the focus away from combat and force players to avoid confrontation. System Shock could (maybe, in the early sequences) be a Survival Horror - but not really L4D....

    Think back to the Survival Horror classics - Resi, Sweet Home, Silent Hill - and compare them to L4D and you see there's no much similarity other than Zombies + Dark + Not Knowing Where Some Stuff Is All The Time. L4D is far closer to the likes of Doom than it is to Resident Evil.
     
  8. SlowMotionSuicide

    SlowMotionSuicide Come Hell or High Water

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    ..one would still bang it?
     
  9. Phalanx

    Phalanx Needs more dragons and stuff.

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    I would like to put a noteable mention for the first AVP (I believe someone mentioned it already). Not only was that FPS and thriller, but the first time I played it, I chose the Marines campaign, and my GOD, was I bricking it. The whole thing, right down to the motion sensor and seeing your ammo counter rapidly deteriorate as the aliens kept coming at you, really put me in the mindset of survival first, mission second!
     
  10. Lizard

    Lizard @ Scan R&D

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    Thief, in particular the Escape level 2/3rd of the way through the game, had some great survival horror elements.

    Locked in a haunted mansion without any weapons after The Trickster has just ripped your right eyeball out of its socket?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=34g2uiqD4VU

    Oh, Looking Glass, we miss you.
     
  11. CardJoe

    CardJoe Freelance Journalist

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    If we're going to talk of Thief, we have to mention Thief: Deadly Shadow's redeeming features - The Cradle and The Haunted Ship. Goddamn, The Cradle is the scariest thing to have graced a screen ever.
     
  12. pimlicosound

    pimlicosound New Member

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    It's not classic survival horror, but I found the first FEAR to be quite scary - not in a makes-you-jump-with-fright sort of way, but more in the way that the story gradually revealed the twisted nature of Wade and his experiments with Alma, and your relationship with her. I found it very unsettling in a way that a town full of zombies simply isn't.
     
  13. pimlicosound

    pimlicosound New Member

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    Joe, you mention the Thief games a lot, and I'm starting to regret never having played them. Perhaps I should look them up.

    What games would you compare them with? Are they similar to playing a thief / assassin in Oblivion, for example?
     
  14. Phalanx

    Phalanx Needs more dragons and stuff.

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    I wonder, does Steam have the Thief series?

    Jeez, I'll put that under my list with Deus Ex...

    Edit: Bah, only Thief: Deadly Shadows on Steam. Is that the only one worth playing?
     
    Last edited: 10 Jun 2010
  15. CardJoe

    CardJoe Freelance Journalist

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    I'm not sure whether it's worth going back to them all - they are brilliant, but the first two especially look very dated. It's like Deus Ex: unparalleled brilliance, but goddamn ugly. If you think you can contend with that and look at the game as you would have when they first came out though, maybe go for it. Personally, I'm hoping they show up on GoodOldGames soon.

    Luckily, The Cradle and The Haunted Ship show up in Thief: Deadly Shadows, which doesn't look as dated. Deadly Shadows is definitely the worst in the series, but it's still a good game. Solid level design and all - it's mainly the open city sections which are a departure from the norm for the series.

    Comparison-wise, they don't really compare all that much. They aren't really like playing Oblivion - though that's probably closer than some of the more obvious comparisons, like Hitman. It's not at all about killing people - if you even get spotted then you've usually messed up. It's a true stealth game, where you don't want to get detected at all.

    Really, when it comes to Thief, words start to fail.
     
  16. GFC

    GFC New Member

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    The only game that made me actually scared was Fear2. Loved that game, but just didn't have balls big enough to finish it.
     
  17. Lizard

    Lizard @ Scan R&D

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    Indeed - I think I'm going to take tomorrow off and play through Thief 1 :)
     
  18. CardJoe

    CardJoe Freelance Journalist

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    Thief 1 is, for me, the most personally scary thing ever. The second level, the Prison...it...it just cripples me with fear. It took me years to muster the courage to actually play it (previously I just skipped that level). There's just something about it - the idea of going through this devastated mine, with no effective defence against the undead, only to emerge in the one place the game tells you to avoid, to complete a hopeless mission.

    Honestly, I don't know what it is. I've played every other level and game in the series and, while they've been scary, I've always gone in and done them easily enough. The Prison though...it just fills me with dread and brings me out in a cold sweat at the thought of it. In all my time and experience I've never found anything which terrifies me in such a way - my entire body just starts going "OHSHI-OHSHI-OHSHI" at the concept of it.

    So, yeah - I'll play Thief 2 instead...
     
    Last edited: 10 Jun 2010
  19. Fizzban

    Fizzban Man of Many Typos

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    I recently played through Resident Evil 2 again. Spent several days playing through both Leon and Claire's campaigns. I'd forgotten how much fun they are. Wasn't long before I could get a perfect run. No saves, no special weapons, no first aid and all in under 2.5 hours. I made it with seconds to spare. The relief was palpable. That level of pressure and the fear when you have to fight a boss (especially with those controls), knowing if you die you've got to start over... Aah it was good.
     
  20. Podge4

    Podge4 Oi, whats your game?

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    There aren't that many games that scare me. The only ones to do anything like that would be F.E.A.R. 1 and 2. The rest of the time I would say its just a bit more of an anticipation followed by a jump not a actual proper scare. The bit in F.E.A.R. that really got me was near the end of the game i think and your making your way up to the roof and theres two or three fast moving baddies that can cloak start attacking you. on a 42" screen and surround sound up loud its one of the only times i was saying "oh f**k, oh f**k!" out loud.
     
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