If you love the horror genre, but have never played a horror game, you are really missing out. What separates a great horror movie from a great horror game is that YOU are in control of the game. With a movie, you WATCH the horror. With a well made horror video game, you are IN the horror. Knee deep, actually. The best horror games know this, and use tropes and ideas from horror that translate incredibly well to the video game universe. Put it his way, you all know I know my shit when it comes to horror. I would be willing to go toe to toe with anyone to back that up. Yet, no horror movie has ever made me scream out loud, and yes, there are a few video games that actually have. It is THAT immersive of a medium. Now, for your consideration, the five scariest games I have ever played. Please note, there will be no Resident Evil games on this list. As much as I adored the series, and think it set the tone for many of these, it has just fallen too far from grace for me to be able to include it here in good standing. Also, there will be no Dead Space, not because the series isn’t scary, but because it is more action oriented, which takes away a big chunk of the fear factor.
Anyway, on to the good stuff.
Mike took Jenny’s hand. He could tell she was scared. He had only done it once before, and it didn’t even end up being that good, so he didn’t really count it. But he knew this was her first time, and he wanted to do everything he could to make sure it was as perfect as she imagined it. The room was only lit by five small candles, and he opted against music because he thought it might make it all seem a little forced. He felt bad that this all just happened to be unfolding on Halloween night. He could only imagine that made it even weirder for Jenny, but in his mind, regardless of day, the moment was right. Everything lined up and led them here, to this moment, together. “It’s okay, Jenny.” He said in a calming tone. ” Being scared is okay.” He slid his hand behind her head and cradled it for a moment, looking into her eyes. Yes, they were both young. Maybe TOO young for this, but Mike kept telling her about how the news always talks about people their age doing it, so why should they be any different? He leaned in and kissed her on the cheek softly, reassuring her some more as he readied himself. He knew the more they thought about it, the less likely she would be to go through with it, so he knew it was time to act. “You know I love you, right?” He asked her. Without breaking his gaze, she answered: yes. “Then it’s time” he said, and her eyes watered as he slid it in, very slowly.
In many ways, there is no medium that can deliver horror quite like a book can. Why? Because in a horror film or game, the vision of horror is designed for you. Yet in our heads when we read horror fiction, often what we imagine is way worse than what is imagined for us. Horror books leave that fear up to us. They may lead us in a direction with a visual description of a scene, but in everyone’s minds who read the book, I can promise you the scene has key differences. In other words, when it comes to reading horror, we are the director. The script may already be there for us, but we are the ones who bring it to life. The other beautiful thing about horror fiction is just how subjective it is. For example, you may think clowns are cute, but I think they are boorish demons summoned up from the very pits of Hell. For that reason alone, I may imagine some clown-like features when I imagine something creepy. It is subtle and subconscious, but it is just one of the ways our minds further amp up the scares when we read horror fiction. We personalize it. Having said all that, some books are just scary as fuck. These are the five books that had me making sure the door was locked and there was nothing hiding under my bed.
As adults, we rarely get picture books. Most authors would prefer to keep their books free of art in an attempt to keep each individual version of their vision alive in the minds of their fans. But comic books and graphic novels are the exception to this. Often written with very specific visions in mind, the main misinformation people seem to have about comics is that they’re for kids. I will tell you now, to think that is to undermine the impact of the medium. Also, in thinking that, you are denying yourself some truly amazing stories told in incredibly original ways. Take, for example, these five graphic novels I am about to tell you about. They present horror to you in a way in which you have never seen before. They pull you in to their horrors with each progressive frame. A world where the written word and the illustration go hand in hand to tell a cohesive, and often times nightmarish, story. Come with me, my REMlins, as I tell you about the five scariest, creepiest, and best horror graphic novels I have ever read.
October is a fine time to lay down the best and worst horror of the year. You know for the remainder of the year, all the big studios will be pushing their Oscar contenders, and October is the last great hurrah for horror to make its impact. In other words, if it is good and it’s horror, it is already out by now. 2013 has been a very polarizing year for horror, in my opinion. On one hand, you have a few movies that really kicked the genre’s ass (hint hint), but like always, you had horror films that seemed to follow the same boring tropes that lead all horror movies to an ironic and untimely death. It seems this year, the biggest offender when it came to bad, as is often the case, were the sequels. In regards to good, there are many that stand out. So much so, in fact, I will break convention and break down this list by genre to make it a little easier on you guys. Bad will be bad, but good will be put into more specific categories. Just thinking of my REMlins. Now, for your consideration, the best and worst horror films of the year. Some of which you may agree with, some if which you may laugh at me for, and some I am sure you’ve never heard of.
I have waited a long fucking time to tell this story. It has simmered inside me for two decades plus now, so I thought this would be the perfect way to begin my TWO WEEKS OF TERROR here at RemyCarreiro.com. I can honestly say this was one of the scariest moments of my life, but as you know from reading this site, there are quite a few of those. What sets this apart from some of those other situations is, I think this might be me at my youngest, in terms of the incidents I’ve shared. I was in the fourth grade when this happened to me, and I was always too scared to tell anyone. Hell, it is still pretty tough to talk about, to be honest. Someone wanting to murder you can do that to a person. Better out than in, I always say. Anyway, this is the true story of the time my classmate invited me over his house to play video games, and then trapped me in the basement and tried to stab me with a butcher knife. Thinking about this again is making me want to vomit. That is generally how I know a story is worthy of sharing with you all.
For the next few weeks, right up until Halloween, I am only going to focus on horror. Horror films, horror books, horror games and my horrifying life. No cute lists about puppies who sound they are saying I RUV ROO! No rambling articles about how people misunderstood this French film, or that Spanish film. No news stories (unless something REALLY epic happens) and no rambling about sex or drugs. Well, I will still probably bring both of those things up, because I am a sicko, but honestly, tie the baby down, fireproof the dog, double lock all the doors and pray to your non-existent God, because this is the TWO WEEKS OF TERROR and HORROR at RemyCarreiro.com.
*Insert evil laugh here for affect.
I know a great many of my readers turn to me for horror recommendations. It has sort of become my go-to thing. More than the Disney trip from hell, or the guy who killed a guy and then came to work, people ask me about scary movies. And they all want me to tell them horror films they have not seen, which makes it hard because I am not a complete psychic who can know the entirety of your film collection just by looking at you. But regardless of all that, I take it as a huge compliment. I take it was people’s way of saying I (at least, somewhat) know what I am talking about, which is always nice to hear. And though we are but a few weeks away from my heralded “Best and Worst Horror Movies of 2013″ list, I thought I would give my REMlins something to tide ya’ll over. Some sick little flicks, available for stream on Netflix, right now. No waiting or wondering. As soon as this article is done, you can go to Netflix and watch any of these, right now. Side note, if or when any of these films are taken off Netflix, please let me know so I can adjust and update the list. Thanks kids!
Something happened when I talked about A Serbian Film. People started coming out of the woodwork, telling me they took my article as a sort of ”challenge”, and in almost every case, they wish they hadn’t. They subjected themselves to the movie when I told them they shouldn’t, and it messed with some of them as badly as it messed with me. And the odd thing is, I have no problem recommending dark films to people, but I genuinely, at no point, was recommending anyone see a Serbian Film. Truth is, I was warning most people against it. And though I am not warning people against Dogtooth, I can safely say this movie is not for everyone. While not nearly as intense or fucked up as the aforementioned movie, Dogtooth is still a dark and often perverse ride, and one that never chooses to look away from the horrors it conveys. Decidedly slower than Serbian Film but a great deal more realistic, Dogtooth takes the idea of the family dynamic as you know it forever changes it. And as fucked up as this movie is at times, I found Dogtooth to be a wildly unsettling movie, and a genius movie at that. Relax, I know few have seen the film, so there will be no spoilers in this article. Like I have said before, I don’t want to spoil it, I simply want to make you NEED to see it.