Horror games are a fickle genre, and it’s partially because people can’t really decide what’s scary. While games like Until Dawn blew huge budgets on some gorgeous-looking monsters, it never made quite the same impression as Slender, a cult sensation indie game with absolutely zero animation in it at all.
Part of that fickleness is that the horror umbrella goes much larger than you’d think at first: Some games put being scared first like Amnesia, or games that invest a ton of technology in keeping you scared like Alien: Isolation. However, one sub-genre stands out among all the different types of horror titles: Survival Horror.
The past 2 years have been an absolute boon for survival horror- what was once a dying genre replaced with Outlast clones and games cosplaying as Silent Hill 2 has been revitalized both financially and critically with blockbuster after blockbuster. While not filled with the same pretentious snark as “psychological horror”, survival horror has its stronghold in video games for a reason- the best games are actually about playing them, not being scared.
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