Scary Conversions: 5 Horror Films That Should Be Video Games

Joel Harvey

We love a good horror film – but we love scary video games even more.

Any cinematic trip to scaresville is a trip worth taking as far as we’re concerned. And there have been some downright terrifying journeys over the years but surprisingly, not all of them have made the translation to pixels yet.

Sure, there’s been many that have; Alien, The Thing and The Evil Dead, to name a few. But some great horror flicks have bypassed the video game industry completely, and we’re not entirely sure why. Maybe licensing issues have been the problem, or just a perceived lack of audience interest by publishers. Whatever the reason, we think tricks have been missed and certain gaming treats have not been offered.

28 Days Later

Danny Boyle’s visceral take on the zombie genre was a pure delight in the modern horror genre. The 2002 film saw a planet ravaged not by zombies, but humans infected with the ‘rage virus’; a disease that turned them into fast-running, maniac killers. It’s a nerve-shredding experience to watch 28 Days Later, but imagine what it’d be like playing it?

We may have had our fair share of zombie games in the past, but a video game take on 28 Days Later would be something entirely different. If it successfully blended the artistic integrity of Boyle’s classic, with adrenaline pumping game play, it could be something special indeed.

The Blair Witch Project

A first-person perspective in a video game can make for a frightening adventure. Don’t believe us? Try playing Alien: Isolation or Layers of Fear at night with the lights out and the headphones on. See how long you last before you’re sobbing and asking for it all to stop.

In the world of cinema, a first-person perspective comes in the form of found footage films and The Blair Witch Project was one of the first – and best – of this genre. By putting the audience directly in the point-of-view of the characters, it created a uniquely unnerving viewing experience. So, why not translate this to the world of gaming? A Blair Witch game could work perfectly as a walking simulator, as you wander around creepy woods at night, losing your sanity at every noise you hear.

You can’t win though. You just end up sobbing and asking for it all to stop. Again.

It Follows

The recent Friday The 13th release has proven that you can translate a slasher movie into a game. And we expect to see more indestructible titans of the slasher genre getting the video game treatment in the near future. But the one we really want to see is It Follows.

This was one of the best horror films in recent years, playing up old serial-killer horror tropes and re-imagining them in a unique way. A game version could do something similar. It could work as a multiplayer game, with each player being designated as the person who gets followed (if you haven’t seen the film, this is not a good thing). Other players could help, or hinder, the player. But if they help, they’re at risk of having the target of being followed being passed onto them.

And there’s no ending; there’s no final boss to defeat here. The game would be just as relentless as the film itself, which would make this a true gaming test of your psychological limits.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

You’d have thought some bright spark would’ve converted Tobe Hopper’s 1974 gory horror into a game by now. And you’d be right. Although, we’re not counting this Atari 2600 as a bona-fide video game, because it’s absolute nonsense.

Instead, what we’d like to see is a fully-fledged survival horror version of Texas Chainsaw Massacre. A game where you’re forced to escape, and fight, Leatherface and his family of psychotics. The use of weapons could really be interesting in this game too, as you have to find ways to defend yourself against vastly superior tooled-up enemies.

But eventually, you’d get hold of that chainsaw yourself and it’d be like the first time you get one in Doom all over again.

It

Now, we’re pretty sure Stephen King doesn’t allow his work to be converted to video games. The fact that no game based on his stories seem to exist, would back that statement up. Perhaps though, game developers just don’t know to approach a Stephen King video game. But we have one idea: a point and click version of It.

No, stay with us. This works (we think). Point and click games are a seemingly innocuous style of game, almost child-like in a way but with brain-breaking puzzles. And that’s how It works as a scary story; you’re lured into a child-like world, that then throws goddamn scary clown demons at you at every opportunity.

A point and click It could be great then, with Pennywise popping up throughout the game to terrify and confound your attempts to solve puzzles.

And just imagine if you took the paper boat object from your inventory and tried floating it with that open drain over there…