Since the early days of the games, names based on existing intellectual property have gambled on the popularity of well-known franchises to increase sales and attract fans who may not have been as enthusiastic about the games before. Unfortunately, years of quality control problems and rushed cash injections have affected the public perception of licensed games of chance. With the exception of a few online games and the occasional DLC character, the days of customizing video games for almost every major theater release are over.
But it’s not just AAA releases and famous publishers, so today I want to talk about the strange world of fan horror games and how their passion for their strange source material helped keep the franchises going. These games may not be as impressive as officially licensed products, and their legality is sometimes questionable, but there is certainly something to be said for fans who gather to celebrate their favorite stories and characters without any real expectations of fame and fortune.
In a world where publishers like Konami are still abusing their favorite franchise (even outside the horror genre), it’s very touching to see fans joining forces and releasing experimental credits on their own terms. The Silent Hill and Resident Evil series, for example, both feature a variety of fan projects that try to revive the charm of previous games for the next generation. A simple look at this huge backlog of unofficial games makes it easy to understand the cultural influences behind these interactive stories.
From the house of the evil one: Crossfire (a love letter to the original Brazilian RE games) on Soundless Mountain 2 (a retro remake of Silent Hill 2, more or less NES-style) there are countless original versions of these franchises, some of which are even more exciting than the official releases. These games, which cannot be eliminated by financial projections or business intervention, can take greater risks and generally compensate for their general junkie errors and lack of a reasonable budget with pure creativity.
This time it’s something more charming than disturbing.
If you delve into the modding scene of almost every major release, you will surely find projects that try to turn the original game into a horror. I admire the hard work and dedication with which the town of Silent Hill has been recreated as part of the block graphics of Minecraft, and anyone who has played Cry of Fear (a free, separate game based on Half-Life 2) can testify to how well-designed mods can turn a game into something completely new.
Of course, these exciting projects are not limited to recreating the fame of existing game franchises, because horror films have also been popular with game fans for many years. The biggest example is the ocean of online browser flash games. With the advent of the easily accessible Internet and user-friendly software in the 2000s, there has been an explosion of browser games developed by fans using licensed characters and locations.
Afro-Ninja Productions (led by Sean Tanner, the developer of Soda Dungeon) was actually responsible for two of my personal favorites for these strange names on the Internet, namely Escape from Camp Crystal Lake and Elm Street. Of course it was an interactive adaptation of the Friday the 13th franchise and Nightmare on Elm Street, inspired by the NES names we described in the previous article. Despite limited resources, Sean created entertaining (albeit short) adventures that became very popular at a time when these characters were absent from the main games.
Of course, there are other flash products for fans, and although the quality of these games can vary, their existence shows how important these stories and characters are to people. Outside the world of flash games, however, there were more ambitious projects to download, such as the infamous Terrordrome Hur4c4n Studio. If ever there was a transition that deserved an official permit, this is it! The Terrordrom, in which everyone – from Pumpkin to Herbert West – participates, is both a competent fighting game and a message of love for the horror genre, not to mention one of the most impressive projects presented in this article.
A dream come true for last year’s horror fans.
I remember sharing the first version of the game with friends in high school (the game lasted 9 years) and always dreaming that the project would be taken over by a larger developer so we could play Chucky vs Ghostface on consoles and not on buggy .exe files.
Of course there are endless legal reasons why the officially licensed version of Terrodrome can never take off, but it’s still a fun experience that I come back to every now and then when friends visit. Fortunately, Hur4c4n Studios didn’t let the horror fighters down when they worked on a brand new Terrordrome game with public domain characters and original ideas. If it’s at least half as much fun as the original, it’s worth paying attention to.
Another example of fan games that later became the original franchises are the Pig Farmer Games (now renamed Puppet Combo-Sensation), which became famous in 2013 after the release of the Halloween fan game styled as a horror classic of the 1990s. Thanks to its VHS-inspired aesthetics and precise tank control, the game actually looked like a real PS1 title, with John Carpenter’s custom quintessence. Although the game has now been redesigned along with the author’s drawing under the title Babysitter Massacre, it remains a must for fans of Carpenter’s film and, more generally, for those who love the horror of survival. And if you like that awful little shell, Puppet Combo has been involved in high quality retro horror games for a long time, so I recommend you take a look at their official website.
Nothing compares to the Fear Lo-Faees.
Even if the legitimacy of some of these projects is still in the air, I will always be on the side of independent developers who want to express their love for existing IPs and create something for the fans, for the fans. It is indeed a pity that many of these projects are abandoned under pressure from the original copyright holders, but there are rare cases where the opposite happens. IllFonic was originally conceived on Friday the 13th as a unbranded tribute to the F13 franchise until they managed to impress producer Sean S. Cunningham. With his support, the project was extended to officially licensed (not to say incredibly successful) custom work.
Of course, there are many more fan projects (such as Rom-Hacks, who is trying to adapt the famous cursed game CreepyPastas), and this article is by no means an exhaustive overview of the history (or current state) of horror fan games, but I would like to consider it as an introduction for those who want to explore a darker side of the game.
In the meantime, do not forget to tell us about your favorite fan games in the comments, because the goal of these projects is to share them with other fans. As for me, I think I’ll give Terrordrome one last chance to see if I can finally beat the storyline with Candyman…open world horror games,scary video games to play,horror games game,horror rpg video games,games horror,scary games on origin,exploration horror games,scary games to stream