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64 MCV 13/08/10 HORROR GENRE FOCUS


The horror genre at the cinema has struggled over recent years, with negative reviews and mixed box office figures. So publishers feel video games can capitalise on this, and become the new home for the horror fanatic. Bradley says: “Good horror films are rare these days. It’s more than likely that games will be the future of horror. Games now arguably have just as good storylines as films. Fangoria, the horror magazine, has just featured Splatterhouse on the cover, I think this says a lot about the direction of the culture. “Ultimately it’s more immersive than


a film. You’ll jump out of your skin, however, unlike a film you can’t close your eyes but you can hack the monster’s head off one minute later with a chainsaw.”


FEAR THE FUTURE Warner Bros. is also delivering a big new horror game this Christmas with F.E.A.R 3. Samantha Ryan, senior VP of production and development at Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, feels games are a step on from horror movies: “Games are an awesome


evolution of the horror genre – we can bring players into these worlds and empower them to take part in and make choices about the experience, rather than be just passive witnesses of terror.”


THE HORRORS… “


Deadly Premonition Released: September 17th Formats: Xbox 360 Publisher: Rising Star Games This survival horror split opinion in the US and has developed a cult status. It hits UK shores next month.


Splatterhouse Released: October 29th Formats: PS3, Xbox 360 Publisher: Namco Bandai The violent 1988 beat ‘em up arcade game returns to consoles in October and looks as gruesome as ever.


Best of all, today’s horror games are become increasingly diverse. Since the arrival of Xbox 360, PS3 and Wii, there’s been a new generation of horror titles. Some became more focused on action, such as Capcom’s Dead Rising


Games are an awesome evolution of the horror genre –players can be more than passive witnesses of terror. Samantha Ryan, Warner Bros.


and Resident Evil 5, while others terrified players in entirely new ways. 2K’s BioShock took gamers underwater and engrossed them into a deep and involving story, Alan Wake plays like a cross between Twin Peaks and a


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Dead Space (left) and Alan Wake (right) are part of a new breed of horror games


Stephen King novel, while Dead Space crossed traditional survival horror with action gameplay in a sci-fi setting. Indeed, the horror genre isn’t all about Resident Evil or Silent Hill anymore, and there’s more to come. Over the coming months there’s a new Fallout, Dead Space and Dead Rising, while even classic franchises are making a comeback – such as Namco Bandai’s hack and slash Splatterhouse plus 2K’s eerie alien invasion series, X-Com.


But what’s next? How can the horror genre keep itself fresh and interesting? “I think putting players in intense,


scary, or exciting sequences and giving them responsive controls is the next evolution,” adds Dead Space’s Papoutsis.





Dementium 2 Released: September Formats: DS Publisher: South Peak The original Dementiumproved that horror games work on the DS, and South Peak is readying a sequel for September.


Dead Rising 2 Released: October 1st Formats: PC, PS3, Xbox 360 Publisher: Capcom The popular Zombie holocaust game returns and promises even more ways to dispatch the hordes of undead.


F.E.A.R 3 Released: Q4 Formats: PS3, Xbox 360, PC Publisher: Warner Bros. For the third in the chilling FPS series, Warner has signed horror director John Carpenter and writer Steve Niles.


Saw 2 Released: Q4 Formats: Xbox 360, PS3 Publisher: Konami The seventh Sawmovie hits cinemas this year and Konami’s new title – set between Saw 1and 2– will arrive alongside it.


“Right now that is our goal with Dead Space 2, hopefully people we feel like we nailed it.” Remedy’s Rautalahti concludes: “What I would like to see is more personal horror, stuff that really slips past your defences. I don’t mind seeing horrible monsters covered in blood and guts, but that’s kind of entry-level stuff. “I’d like to see disturbing moments, things that make me feel like I’m staring at something that shouldn’t be happening. “That sensation of a world twisting into something unbearable is very hard to pull off well in a movie, let alone in a game. For example, the scene in Takashi Miike’s Audition, where the sack suddenly lurches? I’d hate to play a game that did something like that to me, but I’d love to talk about it afterwards. And I’d go back for more, too.”


Fallout: New Vegas Released: October 22nd Formats: PC, PS3, Xbox 360 Publisher: Bethesda The follow-up to Bethesda’s incredible post-apocalyptic RPG is finally here and boasts improvements over the original.


COMING IN 2011 AND BEYOND... EA kicks off 2011 with Dead Space 2, Sega has a new Aliensgame in the works, 2K will release an FPS based on nerve- wracking RTS X-Com, Konami is developing a new Silent Hill, while Capcom is readying a Resident Eviltitle for 3DS.


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