Great big scaredy-gamer

I never made it pass that mission.


My personal top 3 moments of shame:

3. Alien Vs. Predator demo

Go into room, shut door, spend ten minutes in there (real-time) cowering from aliens scurrying outside the door. Quit demo. Load demo. Repeat.

2. Call of Cthulu

Load game, get scared by menu music, quit game.

1. Amnesia: The Dark Descent

Watch trailer, player runs away from monster, closes the door and goes into a corner and faces the wall. Sound of a door opening. I quit the trailer.

I haven’t been really scared from a video game since playing Fatal Frame 3. All the horror games I’ve played have numbed me.

I was playing Dead Space 2 the other night and I can’t seem to get scared from games with the tank like control scheme anymore, as I find myself wrestling with the control scheme instead of being scared.

Eternal Darkness did a good job of being a spooky mindfuck with a lot of cool mechanics.

What an awesome game that was.

Fuck me, the Fatal Frame games are so good. Totally forgot about those.

The one that really got me was in SoP and the Bloodsuckers lair (or Bloodsuckers in general).


you don’t really know what to expect, then you get attacked by one Bloodsucker … which is bad enough and then you go underground in a poorly lit area and OMFG, it’s full of them !! and you have to crawl between them …

That and the X18 bunker … was scared silly. It’s the only game (so far) that made me physically “twitch”

Eve-online was not scary per se, but it’s the only other game that ever made me so anxious and had a physical impact. I’ll remember for a long time my first fight, involving a “priceless” ship (which I lost) and the adrenaline surge it caused. My first capital fight was also insane (did not lose this one :)) … all my knowledge went out of the window and I just sat there hyperventilating and wondering WTF was going on, what to do etc. Got somewhat used to it after a while, but my first fights were really intense.

I have a pretty enormous appetite for horror fiction, especially Lovecraftian. So for a while I thought that I was all into horror games and movies.

But over time it’s become clear that horror movies and games simply make me too tense to have fun. I got quite a ways into Amnesia before reaching a floor where there was a door that – as far as I know – I had to go through, with some hideous skinless monster on the other side. (And FUCK that game for the “you can’t even look at the monsters without going insane” mechanic – genius, but incredibly terrifying.) I died quite rapidly… and decided not to reload. I didn’t want to figure out how to get by the fucking thing anymore.

Likewise, horror movies. I went through a period of watching quite a few of them with a friend (the easiest way for me to do it), but now I seem to have burned out on that too. Haven’t watched one in months, and no real plans to do so. I satisfy whatever rubbernecking curiosity remains by reading Ain’t It Cool News’s horror-movie roundup… summarizing four fear flicks in a paragraph each is actually enough for me.

Feels like I’d rather be doing things that don’t make me panic anymore. I’m becoming a wuss, and That’s OK.

I love Amnesia, but I am not sure I will ever finish it because I play it in 15 minute bursts of pure terror.

Shit, I think that’s the exact door I was talking about.

Haha glad I am not alone in being a complete chicken.

I think I would have made it past the Cthulhu intro song!

I played through System Shock 2 twice in 15-minute chunks at a time. Maximum. I am a big baby.

Doom 3 had the same effect on me at first, then about 3 hours in, the monster closets just stopped being scary.

Even the semi-predictable Alma appearances in fear spooked me, though I did manage to finish it. I got to the part in Silent Hill with the little ghost baby fetus things and I was done. Hell there were parts of Thief that spooked me. I guess I am a lightweight.

My tried and true solution to creepy gameplay is to load up the Ghostbusters soundtrack in the background.

1. Amnesia: The Dark Descent

Watch trailer, player runs away from monster, closes the door and goes into a corner and faces the wall. Sound of a door opening. I quit the trailer.
This actually happened to me. I was being chased by something that I knew I had little chance of getting away from. I ducked into a room, moved into a corner, and just sank into it awaiting death (which mercilessly came). I was even facing into the wall so I didn’t have to see it.

Shortly afterward I just remember thinking how strangely fascinating it was that a game made me do that. Not continually try to get away until the bitter end, not try to fight back (as if you could), but just cower in a ball and look away from impending doom. The game was worth it just for that unique experience.

The only other time I’ve been legitimately frightened in a game is when I was playing Thief Gold. The mission where you go to the Haunted Cathedral. I hopped into a hole to explore some ruined underground rooms that were connected together. I can see the room just around the corner has some kind of light in it. I take a peek and see it’s some kind of hammerite spirit that is on fire and he’s just patrolling back and forth. I switch to water arrows and pull back and aim slowly. Release. Splash. I’m pretty sure it hit him; he stopped in his tracks. I don’t move at all either, I’m just waiting to see how he reacts. I lean in closer–what the hell is he doing?


Fucking Go!Zilla (an old download accelerator/resumer program running in the background) lets loose that really loud godzilla.wav shriek it played when all your downloads had completed (56k era for me). The game had half-frozen because it was disconnecting my modem or something at the time and it caused the system to hang temporarily. So, in conjunction with the roar, the game rubber-bands itself back into real-time. Everything that happened during that brief second or two hang went into super fast-forward and I saw that flame guard blip across the room and right up in my face attacking me. ROAR!.

Since I was leaning toward the monitor, I slammed back into my chair almost knocking it over and threw my hands up in front of my face as if to protect myself. I quit the game and refused to go back into it for the rest of the day. Yeah, only the rest of the day. What can I say, Thief was freaking awesome. I wasn’t about to stop playing it for that long.

Oh hey look its a cute little money what does it BLAM!

I could not play any first person game for a week because of those monkeys.

Sound played a huge part of that game - really, really awesome sound for a game of that time. The monkeys and those whispers…oh god those whispers…

Believe it or not the original half life freaked me out, the first time I got sucked up to the ceiling by one of those tenticles nearly stopped my heart dead. Recently the first Bioshock made me nervous but strangely enough nothing in the game made me jump. Also Dead Space was good both games are not good to play in a darkened room. My Wife jumped out of her skin early on during Alan Wake too.

It’s been a long time since I played a game that scared me, but I chalk that up to my lack of game playing as opposed to iron nerves.

Scary moments that still stick out for me are:

  • Aliens-TC mod for Doom
  • Some of the missions in SWAT4, specifically the cult one and the serial killer one
  • Silent Hill

That was a great story Intangir. I could picture something like that happening to me.

I think horror games have an advantage over movies because the player sets the pace. If they’re scared, they’ll go slowly and marinate in the atmosphere. If they’re confident, they’ll bowl right through and progress to another situation that might actually spook them.

It’s one of the reasons I found Amnesia somewhat disappointing. I found the pacing was more dictated by waiting for the sanity recharge than my own pace.