I am not actually without fear. I believe spiders will try to crawl into my mouth if I’m not careful because they are unholy creatures even Satan shuns. I’m also not a fan of public speaking unless, like here, I can craft my words via typing. But when it comes to movies, books and video games, I’m rarely frightened. This isn’t a shock since I literally grew up reading Stephen King (I was the only fifth grader who brought CHRISTINE to class to read) and was similarly indoctrinated to horror movies (I remember watching Alienwhen I couldn’t have been more than seven). So, in summation, it takes a lot for a book/movie/game to scare me.
There’s a reason I threw “game” in there. While roving through the internet one day when I should have been editing, I came across a story about “the Slender Man”. It’s an urban legend actually invented on the internet, about a tall, thin man in a black suit with no face, just white where eyes and a mouth should be. In all a good story. Nothing to write home about, but hey. It’s different from the usual ghosts and ghouls.
Except. There is a game called Slender, released free for download over the internet. I heard about it and decided to check it out on YouTube and…it was scary. Actually scary. Silent Hill was interesting, but didn’t make me blink and this, released as an indie game, actually frightened me enough that I didn’t want to download it, the crummy YouTube videos were enough for me. Not long after I stumbled across another game, Deep Sleep. It’s a Flixel game and so the graphics aren’t on par with Slender, but it’s still creepy as sh!t. It’s also a short point-and-click game, where you collect items to use to escape a typical scary setting. For such a quick game, it sure gave me chills.
What these games have in common is the lurking figure, the one that remains just out of sight and hunting you. Neither has a strong story or any characters except the first-person player, but those aren’t necessary. You are the character, something is after you, and you have to keep moving. A simple concept, but don’t go mistaking that for a criticism. If you want a good story, look elsewhere. If you want to be scared, go for either one of these games.
And leave the lights on.