With a lack of new titles and familiar franchises seeming lost, horror gaming has been all but dead over the past few years. However the last few months of 2014 showed that this genre may be rising from the grave. Resident Evil lost its way with several titles that didn’t live up to the series’ name sake. Left 4 Dead 3 is tentatively MIA, Dead Space and Alan Wake are on hiatus soon to be joined by F.E.A.R. (at least FEAR online wasn’t a huge disappointment…oh wait…it was). Dead Island seemed like a lost franchise with all of the post-original offerings feeling rushed and incomplete compared to the break-out first game. Until recently, Silent Hill was believed to be defunct after its last offering Downpour. It seemed like the genre was fading into obscurity in a market saturated with recycled first-person shooters and everyone jumping on the open-world bandwagon.
Luckily for us this is not the case. Last year saw a fantastic upsurge of indie content. Sure, it’s not the heavy hitters that have name recognition, but this shows developers are still passionate about horror gaming. Thanks to indie titles like The Forest, Slender, Outlast, Five Nighst at Freddie’s, and Among The Sleep the mainstream market has come back to life releasing Alien Isolation and The Evil Within at the end of 2014. Konami also announced Guillermo del Toro and Hideo Kojima’s new Silent Hill title starring Norman Reedus with a pee-your-pants frightening, playable trailer that has reached over a million downloads (time to stock up on Depends). Horror is making a marvelous comeback.
2015 has a ton in store for the genre, so here are a few titles that I am looking forward to:
FRIDAY THE 13TH
One of the most surprising announcements was a new Friday the 13th co-op game where campers work together to survive the lumbering Jason Voorhees. The game is being developed by an unannounced “experienced game studio” shooting for an October release in hopes to make up for the original NES title that appears on lists alongside the infamous ET Atari game. Sean S. Cunningham, director of the original 1980 film, is heavily involved with the creative process and has promised a unique experience with plenty of replay value.