Cliffy B: Nobody buys horror games
Dead Space and Resident Evil have both completed their transformations from survival horror to all-out-action romps. Silent Hill is quickly becoming a forgotten memory and Alone in the Dark is best left exactly there. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to find “horror” games in the AAA retail space. the last one I played and actually loved was ZombiU – but that was more “tense” as opposed to scary. Gears of War Designer Clifford Bleszinski says that’s because nobody buys scary games.
Speaking about his own experiences with Dead Space 3 and its “evolution” from horror to shooter, he said horror games are the sort of things that people would rather rent than buy – and he could be right.
"In the $60 disc-based market horror doesn’t fly," Bleszinski said on his personal Tumblr. "It’s the ultimate ‘Campaign Rental’ that’s played for 2 days and traded in and I’m sure EA knows this."
He said that "true horror" games do still exist – citing PC specific games like Slender and Amnesia: The Dark Descent – but they’ll only become “big” again when the whole industry goes digital.
As for Dead Space 3?
"At the end of the day, this franchise feels like it’s starting as a solo experience, a solitary and confined horror game, and now it’s evolving into much more than that," he said. "You can either fight it or embrace it. I choose the latter, as at the end of the day it’s FUN."
I don’t care about current trends, how the markets perform, or that people like shooting things – I would happily pay for a damned good, proper AAA horror game right now.