History of the genre of horror games. Part one (Topic)

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History of the genre of horror games. Part one


Horror - this genre has always been quite specific, because not everyone is ready to go through such a game from start to finish, especially if it is really done at its best. However, like all genres in the gaming world, horror games have come a long way in evolution. We will talk about what happened before Outlast, Slender man, The Evil Within and other modern horror games.

Continuing the month of horror on WorldOfTopics, today we will tell you the history of the horror genre.

The origin of the genre, or "did it scare anyone at all?"

The 80s can be considered the pre-period for the emergence of horror as such. For a start, it should be said that then people were less spoiled, and more impressionable and it was much easier to scare them. Therefore, what was then called "horror games" can hardly scare anyone today. They were more focused on tension and gameplay features.

There is such a joke that if you are asked where this or that phenomenon first appeared, always answer ancient Greece. In the case of computer games, answer Japan. And in the case of horror, this is no exception. The first beginnings of the genre were found in the game Nostromo (1981), created by Japanese student Akira Yakiguchi.

Nostromo game 1981

You played as a man who had to escape from a spaceship, collecting quest items along the way and at the same time escaping from a monster. The creator was inspired by the film "Alien". It's a pity, but today, apart from this information and the cover, nothing is known about the game. However, it is noteworthy that the basic concept is still used today.

Later that year, Atari released Haunted House. In it we walked around the house with ghosts and collected special urns. To see them and navigate in the dark, the player lit matches. There were few supplies and lives, and it was precisely because of the stress of losing at any moment that the game caught on.

In volume 82, Monster Maze 3D appeared, where, wandering through the maze, we escaped from the large Tyronasaurus Rex ... It was this game that gave us the feeling of pursuit that looks so great today in the Amnesia series.

In 1985, the Commodore 64 The Rats game was born, to which the term horror games was first applied. The game was a text horror game based on the work of American horror author James Herbert. In it, we had to stop the invasion of London by rats that feed on people. She was a kind of mayor simulator, where we led the police, firefighters, doctors, and sometimes we could play for one of them, completing quests.

First canons

In the late 80s and early 90s, horror games began to appear, in which their clear canons of the genre were entrenched, such as a dark atmosphere, poor weapons and strong enemies.

The first games worth remembering are Splatterhouse, where we fought against a horde of critters, and Castalvania. However, two games became truly significant for the beginning of the new decade, and the first is Sweet Home.

The game was an adaptation of a Japanese horror film, and had such features as: small inventory, setting in a mansion with storage boxes, monsters, and a huge number of mysteries. The main developer of the game was Tokuro Fujiwara - the person who will create Resident Evil in the future and all the elements of Sweet Home will then migrate into it.

sweet home

The second, probably truly iconic, and the first in many ways, was Alone in the Dark based on the work of Lovecraft. In 1924, when we took control of detective Edward Carnby, we went to a mansion to study an antique piano. Upon Edward's arrival at the place, the owner commits suicide, and the house itself begins to behave strangely: something will fasten, knock, and someone breathes in the back of the head of the detective. We are starting an investigation.

It was in this game that a static camera, notes, an almost defenseless hero appeared, strong monsters from which it is better to escape - all this later Capcom will call their revolutionary mechanics after the release of the first "cut".

In 1993, a sequel was released, where Edward, already a researcher of the paranormal, is looking for the smuggler One-Eyed Jack. The game focused more on shooting than puzzles, but the game was again a hit.

Alone in the Dark

On the eve of a new era

In 1994, System Shock with a cyberpunk setting appeared in the world. Everything from complex gameplay, tense atmosphere and horror made the game a cult.

The next 95th Clock Tower on our list was probably the last game that marked the end of an era when horror movies were established and ready to take a step towards the mainstream.

Playing as a Girl named Jennifer, we find ourselves in an orphanage, where we will be chased by a creepy 10-year-old boy with huge scissors - the son of the owner of this orphanage. It was a point and click horror with a tense atmosphere, because the boy could appear at any moment. In addition, the game had an interesting fear mechanic - when Jennifer saw the boy, the fear began to increase and the higher it was, the more she stopped obeying the player. The game also had excellent visuals.

We will tell you how the era of horror games came to gold later.

The Topic of Article: History of the genre of horror games. Part one.
Author: Jake Pinkman