Horror - what makes a game scary?

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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby Major Banter on Mon Jul 12, 2010 7:53 pm

Sticky bumps are perfectly applicable.

I have been wanting to say this for a while; but the scariest fucking thing ever would be all NPCs remodelled to gigantic penises. You play the mod totally unawares and BAM you've got a cock going for your head.
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby Phott on Mon Jul 12, 2010 7:53 pm

city14 wrote:6 month bump?

There's a reason why the thread is pinned.
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby Gary on Mon Jul 12, 2010 9:18 pm

Major Banter wrote:Sticky bumps are perfectly applicable.

I have been wanting to say this for a while; but the scariest fucking thing ever would be all NPCs remodelled to gigantic penises. You play the mod totally unawares and BAM you've got a cock going for your head.



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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby coder0xff on Mon Jul 12, 2010 9:32 pm

I think, for me, video games and movies typically aren't scary at all. Like the janitor office thing... When you enter a situation like that, or like the girl popping up in your face in FEAR2, or whatever - it's obviously something that the game developers intended to have happen which hurts its effectiveness I think, because you then know there's no risk. If there's not a way to get out of the situation, the game is not going to suddenly murder you. There's nothing to be lost, so instead of getting scared I just sit back and appreciate the aesthetic efforts of the game development team. They are really cool sometimes - but not scary. If you ask me, running into an enemy is way more scary than any of that stuff, because you have the risk of dying. In games like the Metroid series, dying is pretty harsh, because you can't save just anywhere.

What I do think is creepy is face mangling. Facial recognition is a very powerful and emotionally influential part of our brain. If you give it something that's throwing it off, it can be quite unsettling.



The Thatcher Effect also creeps me out and is a good example of how powerful facial recognition is:
Image

Another example is all those pranks, like the puzzle where that girls decayed face pops up and screams. Can you imagine, if you were playing HL2, and Barney's following you around. It get's all quite and you start looking around. You look back at Barney and his face looks like the girl in the pic a few posts back, and right as you seem him he asks all loud, "WHATS THE MATTER GORDON!?!"

Combine sensory fucking, with a sense of risk (is impending death the only option?), and give the player just BARELY enough control to escape it. I think that'd be perfect.
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby TicTac on Mon Jul 12, 2010 9:44 pm

coder0xff wrote:I think, for me, video games and movies typically aren't scary at all. Like the janitor office thing... When you enter a situation like that, or like the girl popping up in your face in FEAR2, or whatever - it's obviously something that the game developers intended to have happen which hurts its effectiveness I think, because you then know there's no risk. If there's not a way to get out of the situation, the game is not going to suddenly murder you. There's nothing to be lost, so instead of getting scared I just sit back and appreciate the aesthetic efforts of the game development team. They are really cool sometimes - but not scary. If you ask me, running into an enemy is way more scary than any of that stuff, because you have the risk of dying. In games like the Metroid series, dying is pretty harsh, because you can't save just anywhere.

First half of that gave me an idea...
The player's control switches between key characters in the story. Since now gameplay isn't limited to one person, and therefore limited to surviving to the end, the player can be killed off. Several times.
Think of the Modern Warfare games; when you played them and you died in the atomic bomb blast or by getting set afire, weren't you like :shock:
then :(
then :cry:
?

Even though it was unavoidable, you still feel like it's your fault. Now imagine that in a horror game, you're being stalked and eventually are caught by some horrible beasty. Your screams are used as a transition to another character, where they're now heard thru their headset or something. You can avoid being caught by the beasty for a little while, but ultimately you die. (of course, if you want to really mix things up, have a branching story that's affected by whether or not the characters survive these encounters).

If you can get the player emotionally attached to one or more of the characters, it'll really fuck with them when they get killed off. The player'll think it's their fault.
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby jgoodroad on Tue Jul 13, 2010 2:06 am

coder0xff wrote:
The Thatcher Effect also creeps me out and is a good example of how powerful facial recognition is:
Image


can you explain more of this "thatcher effect"?
from what I see is one face has bits turned upside down while the other doesn't... but what I don't understand is why the pictures are flipped again... is that to show something? because it looks like the first set but flipped upside down.

EDIT: surprisingly what unnerves me is conflicting emotional situations... like coming face to face with some kind of monster while standard elevator music plays... not creepy at all just conflicting...
like playing fear except whenever Alma appears you hear this



and whenever you fight a swarm of anything... it becomes more "scary" if something like this plays



THAT scares me.
Last edited by jgoodroad on Tue Jul 13, 2010 2:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby Armageddon on Tue Jul 13, 2010 2:13 am

Go cross-eye on that image to make it 3D!
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby jgoodroad on Tue Jul 13, 2010 2:18 am

Armageddon wrote:Go cross-eye on that image to make it 3D!


I still am not seeing what I think I am suppost to be seeing...

what am I suppost to see?
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby Phott on Tue Jul 13, 2010 3:02 am

jgoodroad wrote:
Armageddon wrote:Go cross-eye on that image to make it 3D!


I still am not seeing what I think I am suppost to be seeing...

what am I suppost to see?

The face on the left at first looks completely right seeing it upside down but when it flips to the correct side it's all effed up. Same thing on the right but it's not edited, just a guy upside down at one point and not at the other.

I think anyway.
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby coder0xff on Tue Jul 13, 2010 3:09 am

The thatcher effect is that if you see a picture of a persons face flipped upside down (but their mouth and eye bits are still right side up) it's common to not even notice that the picture is all fucked up. Only upon flipping the head right side up is the change apparent.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thatcher_effect

Once you're aware of it though, it's much more apparent. The first time I saw it was in a psychology text book, and it was Julia Robots. There was only one frame, and it had the effect applied. I read the caption under the pic. It was in the margin of the page, and I didn't see anything wrong with the pic, so I was confused when the caption said "Try turning the book upside down." At which point I saw it. I dunno why all the demonstrations on line show the two version adjacent to each other. It kinda ruins it. Here's another attempt:

Image
Last edited by coder0xff on Tue Jul 13, 2010 3:15 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby jgoodroad on Tue Jul 13, 2010 3:14 am

ah I see it now... I thought the rightside version came first.
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby TicTac on Wed Jul 14, 2010 2:28 am

noone likes my idea :cry:
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby source-maps on Wed Jul 14, 2010 2:53 am

TicTac wrote:noone likes my idea :cry:


I like it <3
I'll remember it :)
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby TicTac on Wed Jul 14, 2010 4:56 am

hooray!
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Re: Horror - what makes a game scary?

Postby jgoodroad on Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:40 am

If I was anywhere close to having the talent, skill, and tools to attempt that I would...
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