For Halloween, Readers Share Their Horror Favorites

“Movement. Signal’s clean.”

One of my great scary game experiences was with Alien vs. Predator 2, one of the few PC games I was able to play in my youth because of the limits of the family computer. Being a huge fan of Alien and Aliens, I couldn’t have been more excited for a chance to take on the role of a Colonial Marine in a first-person shooter, complete with all the accoutrements — a crappy ’80s motion tracker and a pulse rifle.

To this day, I still have nightmares involving xenomorphs, and this was a game filled with darkness and unknown enemies — despite not being a straight horror game, it scared the hell out of me a few times. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one: Commenters CatmanStu had a similar experience with Alien vs. Predator, and Daretoask was with me on AvP 2.

First, CatmanStu:

“There has only been one game that made me so nervous that I worried about dropping a load in my pants and that was the first Aliens vs. Predator game. Playing as a marine, when that motion detector starts bleeping, truly scared the **** out of me. Not before or since has a game put me in a position where I don’t want to progress.
Also a good example of a movie tie in (sort of) that uses the knowledge of the films for enhancing the experience rather than hindering it.”

And Daretoask:

“I’m with CatmanStu on this one, although for me it was AvP2 for the PC.

“While the first one was scary, due to the motion tracker being employed as an indicator of impending terror, they upped the ante in the second part. There was one scene in particular that I remember to this day: One of your fellow marines gets taken by the aliens, and your character (of course) volunteers to go after her into the aliens nest. Now you don’t have to be a fanboy of the Alien franchise (which I am) to know that that is a terrible idea, and that it will surely end in disaster.

“So you make your way down (why is it always in the cellar, dammit?) to the nest, all the while expecting to be mauled by aliens hiding in the shadows, but nothing happens. The music is very creepy, and the atmosphere had me biting my nails. When you finally find the missing marine, you see her strung up to the wall, have a short conversation with her and then the inevitable chest-bursting occurs, followed by you torching the chestburster.

“That’s where the horrific part starts: Your motion sensor goes haywire and lights up like a Christmas tree, accompanied by the hissing sounds and angry screams of the aliens awakening around you. Your fellow marines (who are bravely waiting for you in their armored vehicle) state the obvious and tell you to run. The elevator door (of course) closes in slow motion, which made me scream angrily at my monitor. When the doors finally opened, I ran through the nest, trying to stay ahead of the aliens, whom, my motion tracker was telling me, were getting ever closer. Running backwards I fired proximity mines on the ground, the first of which started exploding soon after.

“When I finally made it to the safe room, the corresponding blast doors (again) closed very slowly, and the giant Praetorian that was chasing me almost made it inside with me.

“That same night I woke up sweating like a pig, and to this day this is the only game that has ever given me nightmares.”

There are a few more great anecdotes over at our previous post asking this question right here, and also a few at the Facebook poll.

And now, to you guys: Share your favorite horror experiences with the rest of us. We want to hear them. They don’t even have to be from horror games, just stuff that scared you.

Follow Hornshaw and Game Front on Twitter: @philhornshaw and @gamefrontcom.

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3 Comments on For Halloween, Readers Share Their Horror Favorites

Brian H

On November 1, 2012 at 3:17 pm

“You can find Eternal Darkness on eBay, but you’ll need to supply the GameCube.”
Not for nothing, but doesn’t the Wii play GameCube discs? Or did they remove that functionality on newer models? My super old Wii plays GameCube Mario Golf like a champ. Coincidentally, the only game I’ve played on my Wii in the last 2 years.

Phil Hornshaw

On November 1, 2012 at 3:35 pm

@Brian H

Oh crap, you’re right! Haven’t touched a Wii in ages. Forgot about that. The Wii-U will play GameCube games too, I believe. Fixing.


On November 2, 2012 at 7:41 am

@Phil: Thanks for the clip from AvP2, that really takes me back. And it also makes me very grumpy, because I just realized how old I’ve gotten. Now if I can only find my sadness-erasing beer…