Saturday 20 October 2012

My 5 Scariest Moments in Gaming!

Computer games are not just for kids. In fact, they can be fricking scary at times, perhaps even more so than horror films at the cinema because with a game, you are literally in the character's shoes. As the player, it's up to you whether you open that freaky box with all the noises coming out of it or turn that dark corner, knowing full well that a psychopath is waiting there for you with his knife. In the cinema however, all you have to do is sit back and watch and if you don't like it, you can close your eyes and the horror will continue without you. That's definitely not the case with scary games.
There are so many twisted games developers out there who aim to freak the hell out of you but even some games that are supposed to be normal can still have those sh** your pants moments so with that in mind, here are my 5 scariest moments in gaming.

Bioshock (2007) - Xbox 360


What an incredible game this was. 'Bioshock' set a new benchmark for gaming and while it was marketed mostly on its action merits, the immersive storyline took the player into some pretty dark territory. While there are many unsettling moments in this game, including splicers crawling along the ceilings and insane people cackling from out of sight, the scariest bit for me is from about halfway through the game, when you descend into a basement to find a number of life-like statues frozen in place. As you work your way through them, it soon becomes apparent that the statues keep moving into a new position everytime you turn away from them. Just like the weeping angels from Dr Who, these terrifying enemies keep coming closer and closer, until you no longer want to turn away because you're so fricking scared!
Tomb Raider (1996) - Playstation

Ok, Ok, I know what you're thinking. 'Tomb Raider' is not a horror game. And you'd be right. But there is one moment that scared the living daylights out of me as a kid and that was in the jungle, when you began to hear noises in the distance. Noises from something big. I'll always remember the first time I saw that T-Rex burst through the trees with its giant jaws. I think it made me even drop my controller ha! I know it looks a bit rubbish and dated now but at the time, this was cutting edge stuff. Seriously.
Resident Evil 4 (2005) - Playstation 2
Survival horror. A term that didn't exist in gaming until the first 'Resident Evil' arrived in the mid 90s. While the series is now more about ridiculous cut scenes and cluky controls, back in the day, 'Resident Evil' was one of the scariest things around and while I could have picked any number of moments from the first three games, number 4 was the pinnacle of the series for me. This game excelled on every level and left the player with a constant feeling of dread as you never knew what would happen next. My scariest moment though would have to be when Leon is holed up in an abandoned house and the zombies (or whatever they are) start coming, in their hundreds! That's what it felt like anyway. No gaming experience has ever managed to recreate that feeling of being so hopelessly outnumbered by zombies before and it brought to mind classic scenes from the best Romero films. The whole thing is just so frantic and every time another window or door gets broken through, your heart just skips another beat. I bet no one survived playing this house siege chapter the first time round. 
Silent Hill (1999) - Playstation

While 'Resident Evil' was arguably the first 'survival horror' game, 'Silent Hill' took the experience to a whole new level, replacing the formers scary jump moments with a constant unnerved feeling. Again, it's hard to pick one moment from such a seminal series but for me, the most disturbing part was just that first time that you walk outside and the fog descends. You can't see more than a few metres ahead of you but then the creepy ass sirens blare and your radio starts crackling. The radio was a genius idea, unsettling the player every single time it came on, as you knew that some disturbing Lovecraftian nightmare was just about to appear, crawling, crying or god knows what as it tried to eat your face. No games have ever scared me as much as these did, to the point where I have never completed a single one of them. I've tried numerous times but after half an hour or so, I would just have to switch the console off as I was too freaked out. And that music! Aaaaargh!!!
Dead Space (2008) - Xbox 360

I think 'Dead Space' is an extremely underrated survival horror game, with its creepy abandoned space station setting  and it scared the crap out of me everytime I played it. The Necromorphs were horrific opponents who would burst out at you at any given moment and would even play dead. Walking past a 'corpse', knowing full well that it would jump up at you as soon as you turned your back was pretty unsettling. My scariest moment in that game though was during one of the anti-gravity sections, where you couldn't hear a thing and would float from wall to wall. I remember one time, during one of these sections, where I casually turned round to see a Necromorph floating silently towards me, just a metre away. I'm not certain, but it's possible that I might have screamed at that point.
So there you have it. My 5 scariest moments in gaming, each more embarassing than the last! If you agree with my choices or would like to share some of your most terrifying moments, then remember to comment and share below. Thanks! 


  1. All great picks, but you forgot to mention the wolves and the bloody bear in Tomb Raider. When I fell down that hole and he jumps at you out of no where, bugger me!

    I loved Bioshock so much I can't wait for the new one!

    1. Bioshock Infinite looks like the best one yet!!!