I can't play horror games these days. Horror films aren't a problem, because most of them by now are incredibly formulaic and there's a detachment to film that puts distance between you and the action. That detachment, that distance, is not something you're afforded in games, and the real masters of horror in this industry know how to leverage that to the most chilling extent.
Over the years, series like Silent Hill, Fatal Frame, and Dead Space have basically given me a serious heart condition... along with all of the comfort food I eat after soiling myself. It's important to refuel.
This year, hands-on time with The Evil Within and Alien: Isolation have already conspired to fray my nerves further, and now comes news of a partnership between Hideo Kojima and Guillermo Del Toro. Remember how Kojima's been teasing his involvement in a new Silent Hill game? Well it's called Silent Hills, and its teaser demo -- the project briefly known as P.T. -- is playable on PS4 right now.
It all takes place in an L-shaped corridor of a rundown house. The play area is tiny, but what mystery studio 7780s have done with it is extraordinarily creepy, and your passage through changes each time. To illustrate what I mean by that here's a video that slowly gets creepier and creepier, culminating in me screaming loudly and almost having a coronary. Have I mentioned that I suck at horror games?
It took me three cigarettes and a jittery walk around the block to get back to normal. I thought the video of "reactions" to the demo were staged at the time, but having almost fallen off of my chair in terror, I can confirm that if you're the jumpy, nervous sort... run. Run now!
At the end of the P.T. demo, which I haven't reached yet, a character is shown walking through a typically foggy street. The names Hideo Kojima and Guillermo del Toro appear on screen, and the figure turns around, revealing the virtual face of Norman Reedus. Skip to 1:16:00 in this Twitch vid from the wonderfully named SoapyWarpig and you can check out for yourselves.
I'm going to go eat a pack of Skittles, surround myself with cushions, play something made by Nintendo, and think of happy things.