A Nine-Point Guide on How to Scare The3rdPlayer

20160731192339_1.jpgI would never call myself an expert on horror. I’ve watched a ton of horror films and played my weight in horror games so I’m no stranger to the tricks and tropes of the trade, either. I’ve gained enough of a reputation to be considered an aficionado, though, somewhere closer to an expert than a layman. What I do know is that after spending probably half of my life taking in an appreciated horror media is that I know what works for me and what doesn’t.

Something I’ve talked to a few folks on Twitter and in my life about is not necessarily what is done well or isn’t but what actually works to give you the creeps and keep you entertained. When it comes to films, for instance, a solid slasher movie will keep me watching while a lot of movies with possession or vampires don’t tend to strike the right chords for me. On the other hand, I know people who have the exact opposite inclinations. Some people are claustrophobic and can’t take certain camera angles. I know plenty of folks who can’t stand when movies victimize children because it feels like low hanging fruit for the sake of a reaction.

Games are a little different, though. There’s another level of immersion because you’re the one controlling the person going through the ordeal. By extension, these things are happening to you and if you want to finish the game, you’re going to go through a gauntlet of jumps, creeps, and “You Died” screens to see the end and find salvation. How do you know which horror games are for you, though? Do certain mechanics work more effectively toward embedding that dread into your bones? Are there effects that make you roll your eyes a bit or get so frustrated that you need to put your controller down for a minute to compose yourself?

Allow me to open up my own discussion with five ways that games can creep me out- and four ways a number of games have rubbed me the wrong way while trying. As always, since this is discussing a multitude of game mechanics and situations from video games, there will be spoilers below. Nothing that will ruin a game entirely, but it may take some of the punch out of some scares you might not want ruined. Consider yourself warned!
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A Gift That Gives Quite A Bit – Playstation 4 – White Day: A Labyrinth Named School – 2017

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White Day: A Labyrinth Named School
Playstation 4
ROI Games/Sonnori
Genre: Survival Horror
2017
There are a thousand and one ways to scare an audience. In writing, you’re limited by the reader’s imagination- but the imagination is a powerful tool in this case. Filmmakers are limited by budget but with skill and creative angles and production, even the most mediocre offering has its moments. When it comes to video games, there are still limitations, but the sky is the limit when it comes to effects, locations, and most other elements. There are a variety of styles to be experienced from the years of exploring themes and methods of exacting terrifying encounters in electronic worlds.
White Day: A Labyrinth Named School is a remake of a game from 2001, but this is the first that the United States has seen of it on consoles or in a full translation. Between the county’s interest in foreign horror offerings and gaming, there have only been a few titles that were made originally in Asia and remade for worldwide distribution (Corpse Party being another recent example) but they have been appearing every so often to the excitement of horror fans.
Given the fourteen years the US waited for White Day to hit consoles, how did it transition into the ever-growing library of chilling games that we’ve been seeing over the past few years- and was it worth the wait in any case?

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