Are we compelled to like things we fear, and don't understand. Compelled so much so, that we have re-live the experience over and over again in an attempt to understand?
All of the games on this list (Including Alien: Isolation) are iconic for their memorably unkillable antagonists.
One i feel that is missing is the Regenerator / Ubermorph from Dead Space. An antogonist that continually brings you back to re-play because you love to hate the thing so much.
You could say the same for Alien Isolation's success. Much like the original film (and Alien 3) the experience was all the more terrifying because of how helpless and vulnerable you (or the cast) were against this threat.
Does this make the experience more visceral and have a more lasting impact on you? More so than Aliens, AR & Covenant where the threat of the Xenomorph is lessened by being more easily dispatched?
I would add the Re generator from RE4 as well, but this is a good list.
I think we are drawn to things we fear or are unknown naturally. We like to know and make sense of things. If we can't connect the dots logically, our brains might fill in the blanks or other people might tell us how to interpret what we don't know while they have no idea either.
I look at games as I do movies or music- it is basically experiencing fear at a safe distance. Sort of like a carnival ride. We want to get as close as possible to experiencing that fear or even the balance of life or death while knowing deep down that we are safe- pretty sure...
Games are a bit different from movies or music since they require more actual engagement and not just observing or listening. Small wonder why games are so popular.
I think with any Movie that is a Horror or Poses/Introduces a Threat to Humanity, then it is just as much how unprepared and helpless the Humans are that is just as important as HOW Deadly the Monster is.
The imagining of being in their shoes and not being equipped to deal with the situation... The most Uper Powerful of Monsters for example THE THING, it was not quite the Horror that the Monster Proposes the Danger of being Attacked... it was the Psychological Impact of NOT KNOWING who is Infected or Not, which really makes the Situation Tense for those Humans.... and this relays back to the Viewer....
R.I.P Sox 01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017
To support my post, here is a 5 minute video describing the allure of scary movies and games from a more scientific perspective.. Sorry if I cannot embed.
There are other videos that are more in-depth but are either political or too on the nose imo.
I can't really dig into psychology or anything too much, but yes. I tHInk that feeling of being small, backed in a corner, or versus an impossible enemey or obstacle to overcome, is something that we, as humans, keep coming back to.
I think there is a desire to face ouR inner fears, failures, or just push forward and do something. It is a lot easier to udnerstand things or do something (I tihnk. A times.) if there is a clear perosn or thing to get through. It is especially easy to feel like you've done that when you are simluating it. In a video game is GREAT way because it is you controlling things and doing it. Horror movies, books, etc., are all good ways to simulate the human experience. T ojust have an experience, feel like you have been through something and changed. This is one of the magical things about films and books. It can be a negative experience too
Not a map, an invitation
To me it is about the interest of something that I do not understand. Combine this with violence and terror and it becomes a horror movie so this is why I watch the Alien movies (why the first three work for me). DK has a point that it is about experience it from a safe distance. Unfortunately the prequels have removed some of the mystery from it, which is another reason why they have mostly failed even though we can try to ignore them. Both the monster, and the human characters got to work.
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