Unfortunately this week we will not be continuing our series on the failed The Suffering franchise, because I am still waiting for my copy...
Unfortunately this week we will not be continuing our series on the failed The Suffering franchise, because I am still waiting for my copy of the sequel to arrive in the mail. Instead of continuing to look backwards, we’re going to be looking forwards. The gaming industry’s biggest annual get together, The Electronic Entertainment Expo (or E3 for short) occurred last month, and today we’re going to take a look at some of the horror game trailers released there.
The Evil Within
If you’re at all like me, you played 2014’s The Evil Within and then promptly forgot about it because despite all the hype the game really didn’t bring anything particularly new to the table. It was fairly successful, however, so I suppose that a sequel was inevitable. I had high hopes for the first Evil Within (being Resident Evil creator Shinji Mikami’s return to horror), but ultimately it just wound up being a confusing mess of a game. The trailer we saw at E3 looks to be frankly more of the same. At first we get some promising story threads, hints that this game is finally going to wrap up the missing daughter plot line from the first. However, that quickly devolves into the same zombies in random locations and evil secret organizations mess that the first game became. I really want this game to live up to its potential, but frankly I have my doubts. If you can’t even string together a coherent trailer, then you’re probably not going to be able to put together an entire game in a way that makes sense.
I’m not sure what to make of Agony. In this game, the player controls a lost soul making their way through Hell. The imagery in the game looks absolutely fantastic. We’re treated to sweeping vistas of burning lakes full of dead souls, strange far-off structures, and even creepy twisted forests. Dante would be proud of this game’s vision of hell. The entire environment seems to writhe in agony. The actual gameplay footage seems like it could go either way. I’d love to know more about the actual mechanics of how this game plays; I want to see what makes it tick. My only major complaint is that the succubus style demon we see at the beginning of the trailer looks very out of place compared to the rest of it. On the one hand we have lots of creepy flesh-horror demons and environments, but then there’s also a naked lady with wings. It’s a bit of a jarring contrast. Either way, I’m definitely excited for Agony.
Call of Cthulhu
Then there’s the trailer for the new Call of Cthulhu game. When I first saw that they were making a new Call of Cthulhu game I was pretty excited. After all, I actually enjoyed Dark Corners of the Earth. However, after seeing the trailer I am less than excited. We see a lot of rather generic turn of the century setting, some cultists, and even a brief glimpse of some horrid fleshy Beyond. However, none of this is particularly Lovecraftian. Lovecraft was all about a slow build-up, a growing sense of something being horribly wrong; this trailer, on the other hand, just kind of shoves everything in your face with no sense of subtlety. On the mutant third hand, though, one must consider that this is a trailer meant to engage the crowds at E3 and not something made for Lovecraft aficionados. Only time will tell, I suppose.
This year’s E3 was a little underwhelming as far as horror content goes. A lot of incredible horror games have already been released in 2017 (Resident Evil VII, Outlast II, Friday the 13th, etc.), and a lot of great non-horror content was shown at E3 (such as Monster Hunter World). However, ultimately I was left a little underwhelmed. Hopefully the smaller indie scene can bolster us through the end of 2017.