We’ve all watched horror movies in the past and wondered how a video game adaptation would play out, right? Well, luckily for us, most developers tend to think along those same lines and, in turn, go on to scrape together enough source material to create them. Despite this, not every worthy accessory to the horror platform has made it to the player over the years. And that, in essence, means that there’s still a rather large gap open for exploration.
Whether it’s a paranormal flick or a jam-packed survival extravaganza — there is always room for a video game port somewhere in the community. With so many chainsaw-wielding brutes and cloak and dagger schemes lurking within the shadows, it’d be a shame to not put them to use, right? Just take these five, for example. I don’t know about you — but I’d gladly play the victim in one of these tales. Are you ready to immerse?
5. Cabin in the Woods
This might come as a slight shock to anyone who’s actually seen the movie — but a video game for Cabin in the Woods was actually in the works some time ago. As part of the Left 4 Dead 2 DLC, Cabin in the Woods was set to be a playable pack, where survivors could essentially step into various mind-bending scenarios as seen in the movie. Sadly, with MGM delaying the game due to ongoing financial difficulties, the finalized product struggled to make it to an established platform. Sad times.
“We actually were going to do a downloadable Left 4 Dead 2 expansion pack, where you’d fight in the Cabin world, but then MGM went bankrupt so the delay squashed it,” wrote Goddard, who directed the film. “By the way — the game was going to be amazing. You were going to be able to play in both the upstairs ‘Cabin in the Woods’ world and the downstairs ‘facility’ world with all the monsters. Believe me, I hate all video games based on movies, they always suck. But porting Cabin into Left 4 Dead felt like the right fit. It pains me that it didn’t happen.”
4. A Quiet Place
If you played Until Dawn back in 2015 and absolutely hated the scattered segments where you’d have to keep your controller perfectly still to avoid detection — then you can see why A Quiet Place would be a perfect fit for such gameplay. Considering the movie revolves around silence and avoiding the hyperactive demons that stalk prey through sound, it’s clear that a video game could easily hold an incredible amount of potential through suspense alone.
Although the script would be somewhat bare, the gameplay itself could easily make up for the eerie environments. Sure, the creatures that lurk between the shadows aren’t the most original — especially when compared to the likes of Silent Hill. But then, even with the horror cliches and condensed plotline, a video game could be a fascinating journey— even if only for a brief visit. And hey, just imagine having to stay perfectly still with a VR edition to boot. Surely that’s enough to rattle a few bones? Plus, it’d be a great way to make use of those spare PS Move controllers that are gathering dust on your shelves. Just a thought.
While there is a tonne of survival horror games that gravitate towards optical illusions and sinister dream worlds, the material from Insidious would most definitely bode well with a VR adaptation. Sure, the story may lack in terms of originality, but the demons that wander the misty underworld are enough to send endless waves of fear down our crooked spines. Just take the Child Snatcher, for example. You know — the one that looks like WWE’s Kane from a debut wrestling match? Take that monster and clash it with the ridiculously eerie Tiny Tim anthem — and you’ve got yourself an incredibly strong opening to a horror game.
It doesn’t matter if Insidious VR is a walking simulator and nothing more, to be fair. In fact, some of the finest horror titles withdraw from combat entirely — and not once has it affected the overall gameplay. Just take Amnesia, or Outlast, for example. Somewhere within that category lies an open space where a movie like Insidious would slot right in without fail. That’s just our opinion, though.
2. Pan’s Labyrinth
Between the crisp meadows and enchanting mazes lies a genuinely terrifying core in Pan’s Labyrinth. Call it fantasy, call it sci-fi — whatever it is, it’s downright horrifying at the best of times. But even without the twisted creatures and sadistic events that lap around the puzzling network, Pan’s Labyrinth is still very much a dark movie that portrays the struggles of war in the rawest format imaginable. And the eyeless wonder that gnaws the heads off of pixies is, I don’t know — just another grape on the table. A rather sinister grape that doesn’t like to be picked, of course. But a grape nonetheless.
When I picture Pan’s Labyrinth being transformed into a playable experience, I immediately think of The Evil Within — what with the unpredictability of each passing shadow and room. I think of pure silence as we cross the threshold into the seventh circle of Hell as the shrieking demons await our trespass. It all comes to mind, and Pan’s Labyrinth, in my eyes, would truly be an excellent carrier for a next-level horror experience. If only the Spanish filmmaker would look past the lens and focus more on the branching opportunities that lurk beneath the award-winning roots.
After the success of the 2017 VR short “FLOAT“, which allowed us to submerge into the Derry sewers and meet Pennywise himself, it got us thinking about a fully-fledged video game adaptation, and how well it would be received in the community. Not only are both IT movies as equally as terrifying, but also just as jam-packed to fill at least two video game stories with lengthy plotlines. And, considering Pennywise is known to take the form of whatever you fear the most — surely that’s an excuse to assemble an endless volley of DLC, right?
As one of the most critically acclaimed horror franchises in the world, it would only make sense for Pennywise to be adopted to the gaming platform eventually. Sure, there might be countless point-and-click adventures and flash games sprawled all over the web, but nothing as exhilarating as a meaty campaign has since come to fruition. That, to me, seems like an untapped source that has yet to be explored. Here’s hoping 2021 could be the year for Pennywise to enter not only our dreams — but also our hardware.