Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butterfly was arguably the best in the series, and that's saying something when there really hasn't been a bad Fatal Frame. The best thing about these games was an atmosphere that was always thick with dread and the certainty that at any time you could find yourself in a perilous fight against the supernatural. What made the combat in these games particularly terrifying was the Camera Obscura, your only weapon against the spirits that wanted to stop you. Crimson Butterfly was the pinnacle of the series in terms of its engrossing story, unpredictability, and scares.
If you missed this game when it released back in 2001, fear not, as you'll be getting a second chance to experience one of the best, if not the best, game in Konami's legendary survival horror series, with the Silent Hill Remastered Selection. Silent Hill 2 is iconic because it excelled in areas where so many games had failed at the time. Thanks to longtime composer Akira Yamaoka, the music and sound effects were top-notch, the characters felt like real people, and the enemies were deeply terrifying. If you're looking for a true survival horror game, Silent Hill 2 won't disappoint.
I watched my first R-rated horror movie (Candyman) when I was six, and I've been playing horror games since I was eight. I like to think of myself as a veteran of the genre, hardened, as they say. When I finally got around to playing The Dark Descent, I soon realized how quickly I could transform from a confident horror enthusiast to a blubbering, sobbing mess of a man. What I'm trying to say is that this game was terrifying. Forget what you know about the genre and take a night to sit down with this game for a few hours with the lights off and the volume way up. If you come away with even a semblance of sanity, you're officially a far stronger person than I'll ever be.
The Dead Space series is easily my favorite horror series to come out this generation. Its presentation surpasses even the best of AAA games, and it somehow manages the incredible feat of giving gamers one spectacular moment after another. Do you remember your first time walking through the Sprawl space station's elementary school? Of course you do; it was unforgettable. Or how about the return to the USG Ishimura from the original game? That was pretty memorable too. Or how about that time where you were plummeting toward the Sprawl at breakneck speed, weaving and dodging the massive chunks of metal in your way? I could go on and on, because Dead Space 2 had a nearly limitless supply of amazing moments.
If you haven't played System Shock 2, I have to warn you that there are a few major spoilers ahead. The thing I remember the most about System Shock 2 is its insanely twisted A.I. antagonist SHODAN. You met her in the first game and supposedly destroyed her. In the sequel, you woke up on the Von Braun spaceship with a mild case of amnesia and the pressing issue of some sort of organic infestation that had turned the ship's crew into vicious zombie-like creatures. Your only help was a voice that guided you through the ship, helping you when you needed it most. Then, just when there was some light at the end of the tunnel and you made it to the safe haven you've been hunting for since you first woke from your icy slumber, that helpful little voice was SHODAN. That blew my mind when I played the game a decade ago, and it remains one of the most memorable moments I've ever experienced in a video game.
I'm sure there are personal favorites and least favorites which failed to make this list, so, by all means, use the comments section below to plead the case for your entry, or to reopen the wounds of a horrid game worth of an extra dash of salt.
By Adam Dodd
CCC Contributing Writer
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central.*