This is my favorite time of the year. Halloween isn’t a day, it’s a month, it’s a way of life, and we’re smack dab in the middle of it. For the last two years we’ve celebrated this fact with our annual 13 Days of Horror — a series dedicated to all things horror. For the next two weeks you can look forward to a variety of features, but tonight is special.
For the most part, horror games aren’t known for their badass arsenals, but there are a few games that have brought us some pretty fantastic tools with which to beat down the undead hordes, alien intruders, demons, demon worshippers, and other abominations that are unfortunate enough to get in our way when we’re in the mood to kick some ugly monster ass. Here are some of the best weapons the horror genre has brought us so far.
Isaac’s Boot (Dead Space)
Sure, the Plasma Cutter is a classic, and easily one of my favorite weapons in any video game, but I can’t remember how many times a good stomp has saved my life or brought me precious resources. I remember the first time I played Dead Space, and how amazed I was by the limb dismemberment. Then, I realized I could stomp the ever living shit out of pretty much everything.
Then, I put the two together, and the results were magical.
The Broken Butterfly (Resident Evil 4)
I’ve noticed that when it comes to Resident Evil 4’s fantastic arsenal of weapons that, for the most part, fans are divided into two distinct groups. The first group prefers the Blacktail/Lightning Hawk combo, for speedy kills, while the other prefers the classier approach, with the Broken Butterfly and Red 9. I fall firmly into the latter, because it’s not about how quickly you can get it done, it’s about how good you look doing it.
I almost gave this spot to the Samurai Edge — the Beretta custom made for the S.T.A.R.S. — but when compared against the elegant, long-barreled beauty of the Broken Butterfly, the choice was easy.
The Hammerhead (F.E.A.R. 2)
This was a very difficult choice, because this series has some pretty fantastic weaponry. Personally, I think F.E.A.R. 3 has the best arsenal of the series, but because it’s entirely void of any real scares, I was able to narrow it down to F.E.A.R. 2’s armor-piercing Shark Laser and the Hammerhead. I ultimately chose the latter because of how goddamned fun it is to use.
If you never played the game, the Hammerhead fires rod projectiles that impale enemies, often sticking them to a nearby surface. Clearly this is the winner. I mean, come on — there’s nothing quite as satisfying as pinning a guy to a wall with a hard rod, am I right?
Camera Obscura (Fatal Frame)
The best thing about the Camera Obscura is how it forces you to get up close and personal with the freaky, murderous ghosts that very much want to drag you kicking and screaming to some dark place so they can do horrible ghostly things to you.
To deal the most damage, you have to wait for the ghost to come within range so you can snap a picture — a fatal frame — and send that stupid ghost back to limbo. It’s an ingenious mechanic, and possibly the only weapon a horror game gives you that actually makes everything scarier.
Your Fists (Condemned)
I’m a pretty nice person. I’m not one for conflicts, and not once have I ever engaged in fisticuffs with another human being out of a fear of getting my pasty ass kicked. Of course, you wouldn’t know this by watching me play Condemned, because when I’m playing those games I’m an entirely different person. For starters, I despise the guns. Why kill bums and crack addicts from afar when I can get real close and break their face with my spiked knuckles before finishing them off with a gentle curb-stomping?
As a series, Condemned is great because it lets you use whatever you damn well please as a weapon. Bed posts, gumball machines, bowling pins, toilet seats, etc., if it can be swung wildly until it connects with a homeless man’s jaw then you can use it as a weapon.
Johnson (Shadows of the Damned)
I love Shadows of the Damned. It’s a freakishly bizarre and often hilarious little game that mixes Resident Evil 4 with all the sexual innuendo and juvenile humor you could ever hope to see in a video game. It also quite possibly has the best weapon ever.
Johnson doubles, or triples, rather, as your sidekick, weapon, and mode of transportation. I’d say he also offers a little comedic relief, but since the whole game is funny, I don’t think that’s necessary. Everything from the enemy seeking Dentist to the Big Boner weapon is there because of Johnson, and I love him for it.
Missed a day? Check out the rest of the 13 Days of Horror:
Day 2: The 12 Best Weapons In Horror Games, Part 2
Day 3: Our Premature Evaluation Of Black Ops II Zombies
Day 4: Why 2012 Has Been The Best (And Worst) Year For Horror
Day 5: 12 Horror Games To Look Forward To Next Year, Part 1
Day 6: 12 Horror Games To Look Forward To Next Year, Part 2
Day 7: Eight Games You Should Play This Halloween
Day 8: Dear Capcom, This Is What I Want In Resident Evil 7
Day 9: 12 Upcoming Zombie Games To Be Excited About, Part 1
Day 10: 12 Upcoming Zombie Games To Be Excited About, Part 2
Day 11: Why We Love Zombie Games
Day 11: Why We Love Zombie Games
Day 12: Comment To Win A Copy Of Resident Evil 6 And Other Awesome Swag
Day 13: Don’t Be Scared, It’s Just A Dead Pixels Halloween Podcast