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6 Things I Want From ‘The Evil Within’

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All this talk about the next generation of consoles has gotten be excited for the next generation of video games. Oh, the Xbox One lets us watch TV on our TV? That’s neat and all, but I’d much rather hear all about the amazing games I’ll be playing on it.

The Evil Within is one of the more exciting next-gen horror games we have on the way — of which there are many — as it’s being developed by Resident Evil creator Shinji Mikami’s Tango Gameworks studio. It’s also being published by Bethesda, the house of Skyrim, who also happen to be involved in another mysterious next-gen horror game (potentially two) called Doom 4. So what would I like to see from the game that’s aiming to “bring horror back to its roots?” Let’s dig in.

Okay, yes, this is a no-brainer. Obviously, the goal of a horror game is to be scary. Mikami has said numerous times that The Evil Within is his attempt to bring the genre back to its roots. He’s “striving for pure survival horror.”

If that’s the case, then I want to feel alone, outnumbered, and woefully under-powered. Never should I feel like a badass. Resident Evil 4, Mikami’s most successful game to-date often overpowered the player. By the end of the game you’re wearing armor made from the bones of your slain enemies and dual-wielding infinite rocket launchers as you ride a tank led by a gaggle of saber toothed tigers made of lightning into battle. …Or something similar.

Survival horror is a genre that strives to evoke very specific emotions from the player. Fear, hopelessness, isolation… it also needs to make us think. This is a genre that enjoys throwing the player into desperate and horrifying situations, often alone, where we’re forced to think and adapt. Item conservation, puzzles, clever enemies, etc. Don’t rely on monster closets and jump scares — if we want those we can play Dead Space.

For me, it’s difficult to find a game scary if I don’t give a damn about the character I’m controlling. It’s not always the case — the original Dead Space scared the hell out of me even though Isaac Clarke was doing his best impersonation of the Master Chief the whole way through — but it’s something that can make or break a horror game.

Not only do the characters need to be someone I can empathize with; they also need to be realistic. Historically, video games aren’t known for their particularly well fleshed-out female characters. They’re either scantily clad femme fatales, busty beauties, or Ashley Graham. The Evil Within has a female character, her name’s Julie “Kid” Kidman and I’m sure she’s a wonderful person. I only hope we get to see that.

The same goes for the story. Silent Hill 2 is still one of my favorite games of all time, because it pushed the envelope. In 2001, SH2 touched on taboo topics that would’ve made most developers too uncomfortable to even mention. Rape, murder, suicide, molestation — it was a mature and profoundly disturbing story that stuck with me years after I played it. I’m hoping Mikami and friends — which better become the name of a Super Friends style Saturday morning cartoon — aren’t afraid to push similar boundaries.

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  • TheDeadman19

    I worked hard on this, and I want someone to appreciate it . . .

    http://tinyurl.com/EvilWithin

  • Canucklehead

    So no action no HUD,no cooperation with other characters. Does that make it boring? Love the name Psycho Break

  • Taboo

    “Don’t rely on monster closets and jump scares — if we want those we can play Dead Space.” The old RE’s had plenty of those. They increase/decrease the trust you have in the environment. I remember being terrified of what could be lurking or jump out at me with every door I opened lol.

  • ThunderDragoon

    I still don’t understand the fascination people have in being under-powered in horror games. To me, that kind of breaks the game rather than makes it better. I don’t like being overpowered either, like saying having an infinite rocket launcher, but on the flipside, being under-powered can take you out of the game too. For example, let’s say you get bombarded by tons of enemies or you’re in a boss fight and run out of ammo. That’s it. You have to start the game all over again. That’s just really annoying rather than scary. With all that said, having an over amount, right amount, or a scarce amount of ammo has nothing to do with my fear level when I’m playing a horror game. All having a low amount does just gets me annoyed and pulls me out of the game rather than immerses me in it or scares me. I understand the alone and outnumbered part. I know being alone gets to me and the music also has a big effect. The atmosphere is probably the most crucial part for me. Well, we all have opinions and this is just mine. Anyways, I know this game will be really good and I can’t wait for it.

    • Adam Dodd

      I definitely don’t want to be underpowered in a way that it makes the game frustrating. It needs to be balanced. In Silent Hill, you’re not bombarded with weapons and ammunition, and that makes every fight intense. Sometimes you have to evade enemies just because it’s not worth taking the chance to battle them. I’d like to see something like that in The Evil Within. My point was more about “please don’t be like RE4″ because you were ridiculously overpowered for a majority of the game.

      • Kwonkicker

        Considering the type of enemies RE4 tossed your way, that was a blessing from the Almighty. Hell even in the original Resident Evil games you had limited ammunition and health but you still were not left totally defenseless.

      • ThunderDragoon

        Oh okay, I understand. :) Yeah, RE4 really did have a lot of weapons and ammo.

  • katshot

    IMO tons of enemys and tons of shooting is not equal to true survival horror game.
    One gun, one clip, one creep in every second-third hall – that’s good enough for me, because you had to make decision – try to kill it, trick it, or simply evade it. And that’s survival – you never know, what happens next, and all you have to do is save your butt. If you’re not too carefull and cold-blooded, or just trying to bully some monster – bam, in 4/5 situations you’re dead. That’s survival.
    If you’re not sure 100%, that you’re gonna beat this – evade this. If you’re not wise enough to calculate the chance’s right – die.