Okay, a bit late on this one, but I was busy chopping at my backlogs on assorted stuff and tackling a few fires in other spots. Anyway, here are a few more amusing horror-themed games from the vaults, although they’re not quite vintage having all arrived this year. One technically isn’t a “horror” game at all, but some of you will no doubt get a bit queasy if you think about it in a certain way. For example…
Beeftacular: Yuck. Retrific’s squishy, bloody little gem (currently available on Steam) made me stay away from meat for a week when I first played it thanks to… well, just look and see for yourself (IF YOU DARE):
Blech. Maybe it’s the thought of a chunk of raw beef cleansing a map of contaminated beef dipping into my subconsciousness combined with the not so wholesome meat industry pretending things are all fine and Grade A dandy when it’s not. But I couldn’t stomach this for more than an hour before I felt a bit off. Then again, the game’s manic pace and timed stages do get really hectic.
That said, yep, that level editor is mighty excellent, the music is great and if you’re a gamer with a meat fetish as well as a speed running maniac, you won’t need to ask “Where’s the Beef?!” at all. And nope, I never played Super Meat Boy until a few weeks ago – grinning meat is no turn on, either.
Boy meets vampire girl, boy falls in love with vampire girl, boy gets turned into weaponized hat by evil forces trying to take over the world… wait, what? There is only one thing a vampire girl can do: go on a bloodthirsty rampage of death and destruction in a quest to get her boyfriend back!
How’s that for a love story gone awry? Anyway, developer Sinclair Strange’s nice cartoon bloody, stylized side-scrolling action/platform game has a great deal going for it, but needs a fix for one Frankenstein’s Monster-sized bug. The great stylized looks, excellent level design, classic platform shooter action and excellent soundtrack (by Jimmy Urine from Mindless Self Indulgence) all make this one worth a play. But if you’re not used to it, you’ll need to deal with one stick analog aiming with a controller or if using mouse and keyboard, getting the ability to stay in place and shoot if needed, but suffering a rather severe frame rate drop.
In the former case, it’s died-hard twin-stick shooter fans that will gripe the most, as yes, the game can still be played, but needs to be a lot more carefully. In the other case, it’s just something weird that requires tweaking ’til tamed. That said, I’m going to go on ahead and recommend the game because the presentation rocks, there are 20 challenge maps included and Strange’s strange game is bloody great fun for those looking for something that follows its own thumpy heartbeat while playing like the perfected platformers of yore.
FINAL EXAM: Now, this one’s a monster of a great time! Fast-paced side-scrolling teen horror-themed beat ’em up that pulls in almost all the classic 80’s tropes you’d expect, tosses out the crap and makes for a fun yet brutal bloody co-op game for up to four players.
Indie developer Mighty Rocket Studios cooked up a fun, tough cookie of a game earlier this year that I’d gotten as part of a bundle deal a few months back, but just got around to trying out (and just in time, too!). Grab a controller, grab three friends nearby or online (it supports local or co-op play) and get set to kill a load of time (and even more monsters). Yes, you CAN play solo, but it’s rough going even on the easiest setting.
Interestingly enough, the game was initially called OBSCURE, which was the name of a more serious, yet intentionally campy pair of survival horror games on PC and consoles two system generations ago. According to Wikipedia, this was supposed to be a “reboot” of that series, but as someone who’s played the earlier two, I say take this one as an all-new game with an arcade vibe that mashes up Final Fight, Splatterhouse, and Zombies Ate My Neighbors to mostly excellent effect. It’s also on PS4 and Xbox One if you have either console.
Next up: Oh, let’s play a little grab bag, shall we? More scary stuff, trail mix edition!