People like to be frightened. That is how Halloween came about right? People want something to cause their adrenaline to pump and for that lump to get stuck in their throat as they try to let out a scream of fright. This is why people pay money to see ‘Paranormal Activity 3’ isn’t it? Well if you are one of those people, then I have the game for you.
Amnesia: The Dark Descent (which you can find here http://www.amnesiagame.com/ as well as on Steam for $4) is one of the scariest games I have ever played. The premise of the game is that you are lost in a castle and you are trying to find your way out while regaining your memory from notes left by yourself (hence the name Amnesia). If you have nyctophobia, then you may not want to play this game since the majority of this game takes place in the dark. You have to keep your sanity by finding light sources, but you don’t always want to be in the light because then you cannot hide from monsters. This game is truly terrifying, I was whimpering like a little girl within the first ten minutes of playing it. Within the next 30 minutes, I was screaming in a high pitched squeal while hiding in the darkness from the horrors that inhabit this game.
You know a game is going to be sadistic when the catch phrase for their marketing is, “Are you prepared to die?” They aren’t lying either… I have died hundreds of times already in my excursion of the Dark Souls universe. There is a penalty for dying in this game as well. It’s not like other games where you just lose a life and have to restart from the beginning of the level. In Dark Souls you lose all of the souls you were carrying, and souls are everything. Souls are your experience and currency, you have to decide very carefully on what you are going to spend your souls on. You can get your souls back if you happen to make it back to the location that you died at, but if you die again while on your way back those souls will be gone forever. That is what is so brutal about death in this game.
Unfortunately for me I do not own a PS3 so I was unable to play the original Demon Souls. I had heard stories about it and I had heard that it was hard, but that did not prepare me for Dark Souls.
While some people may get agitated dying so many times, I get a sense of self satisfaction out of it. The map is laid out so that you keep on opening up new shortcuts to areas while you are advancing through the game, similar to Castlevania. This way you can travel quickly from the later areas back to the early areas very quickly. When I do come back to the beginning areas with my character I can just tear through all of the enemies there with my new gear and knowledge of their attack patterns. I wouldn’t even say that it’s the gear that makes it easier, memorizing enemy attack patterns and locations is going to give players the biggest advantage in this game. Those with a good memory will be the few who actually beat this game.
I’m not quite sure how far I’ve made it into the game so far, but I have a feeling that I have a long road in front of me.