The brilliant, surrealist artist H. R. Giger sadly passed away this week at the age of 74. A man inspired by such luminaries as Dali, Fuchs, and Lovecraft, Giger forged his own instantly recognisable style, painting dark dreamscapes, fished from his nightmares, where human bodies fused together with machines to create an aesthetic that came to be known as "biomechanical".
Most famous for his creation of the Xenomorph that would grace the silver screen in Ridley Scott's Alien, Giger was an artist who pushed boundaries, challenged what was deemed acceptable, and his creations were often powerfully dark, frequently disturbing, and often highly sexual in nature.
In honour of Giger, today's Top Ten is dedicated to a handful of unsettling, artistically-challenging creations and characters from gaming who owe no small debt to the man who gave us the Facehugger.
Cherubs (Doom 3)
Babies are terrifying at the best of times. Rosemary's Baby is pants-ruiningly horrific. But when you get a swarm of Rosemary's Babies with mechanical insect bits instead of limbs rushing towards you, screeching through the air or dragging themselves across the floor, that's when you turn on the chainsaw, shut your eyes, and just pray. To glance at certain pieces of Giger's work is to see that he had a bit of an obsession with gruesome children. He believed that the greatest threat to our planet was the manifestation of overpopulation, and nowhere is that better exhibited than in his work The Birthmachine.
Banshees (Mass Effect 3)
The Banshees are what I imagine would be created if the Alien Queen ever got it on with an Asari. All of the Reaper hybrids could come under consideration here, after all Giger was all about the combination of man and machine, but the Banshees were a cut above the rest. Powerful, hideous, and armed with a blood-curdling cry, the Banshees might be one of the very few scary enemies in Mass Effect, but they're very good at what they do.
And what they do is scare the poo out of us.Click here to read more...
There really aren't enough survival horror games set on the moon (well, apart from Moon) - and Routine plans to put this right in "early 2013." This indie first person "horror exploration game" will throw players into an expansive non-linear moonbase that can be explored in its entirety, including randomised elements and secret areas. There will be no HUD or health bars in order to increase the sense of full immersion.
Lunar Software is an independent development team of three with sound and music from Mick Gordon, and they've provided us with an announcement trailer below.Click here for the Routine debut trailer >>
F.E.A.R. 3 hasn't exactly been subtle about its inspirations. Several of its multiplayer modes have been explicitly named after films from horror legends John Carpenter and Steve Niles, and Warner Brothers has released a new vignette showing the two professionals discuss their impact on F.E.A.R. 3's gameplay. Check it out below, preferably if you're over 18.Click here for the full vignette >>