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Wednesday, June 3, 2020

10 Horror Games We’d Love to See Get the Remake Treatment

Remakes are becoming a hot commodity in the video game industry right now. Capcom has had huge success with its highly polished remakes of Resident Evil games, and the first part of the Final Fantasy VII Remake series has been heralded as one of the best games of the year.

There are plenty of classic games out there that could use a modern paint of coat, so here are some suggestions for horror games that could use a remake.


This one seems to be the most obvious choice in the world. The foundation for it is there in the Resident Evil 2 and 3 Remakes, and those mechanics would work perfectly well with the “panic horror” gameplay of Dino Crisis. The quicker pace of the RE Remakes would be perfect to update the franchise, as the clunkier controls of the PS1 game were more detrimental to you when fighting dinosaurs rather than zombies.


With the popularity of horror games that take power away from the player, it’s the perfect time to bring back the Clock Tower franchise. Games like Amnesia and Outlast put running and hiding at the forefront, something Clock Tower was doing decades ago. Imagine the iconic Scissorman with AI that hunts you like Alien: Isolation‘s Xenomorph or the Resident Evil 2 Remake’s Mr. X. In the right hands, a Clock Tower remake could take what worked about the original and update it into a modern classic.


Stop me if you’ve heard this one: a Victorian city is under siege by a plague that turns citizens into horrifying beasts. No, it’s not Bloodborne, it’s 1997’s Nightmare Creatures. Where Bloodborne features religious leaders and scholars messing with eldritch power, Nightmare Creatures is all about an evil scientist unleashing his experiments on London. While its control scheme definitely shows its age, it was a surprisingly competent action title at the time that had some neat tricks up its sleeve. The adrenaline meter that forced you to keep killing enemies or die was a smart method of keeping players aggressive and could easily be made to work in a modern Bloodborne-style remake.


While From Software is now well known for their Souls series of games, the Echo Night series made a splash with an incredible set of adventure games with strong, emotional storytelling. The first-person puzzle-centric Echo Night has you solving the mystery of what happened on a ship, transporting you to the past to help spirits find peace and move on. Even if we didn’t get a big AAA remake of this game, seeing this series redone in a visual novel format would provide a fresh take on a great story.


One doesn’t normally associate Nintendo with horror, but the GameCube was home to one of the most innovative games in the genre: Eternal Darkness. Spanning millennia, the game tells stories of people coming into contact with ancient, Lovecraftian evils, uncovered by a woman exploring her dead grandfather’s estate. Not only did the game have a wonderfully crafted story, but it used several fourth-wall breaking techniques to mess with the player. Not only would these effects be awesome to see done with modern systems, but the game also featured a unique spell crafting system that would definitely be worth updating as well.


There’s a big temptation to want remakes of classics that are already great, but sometimes the best games to choose are the ones that had a great idea, but poor execution. Rule of Rose fits that description to a tee. This PS2 game featured extremely mature themes for the time, made that much more notable because the story revolved around young girls, causing much controversy. Games have become more accepting of mature themes as the medium has developed, so a remake could be a great chance to fix the game’s uninspired combat and control issues while treating its themes with the respect they deserve. 


The PS2 adaptation of the John Carpenter classic did a great job of taking what made the film so memorable and making it work in the survival horror genre. The smart trust system that drove the interactions between the player and their ally NPCs could be greatly improved with advancements in AI. It would be cool to take some elements of roguelikes and make a highly replayable version of the game that randomly assigns who is infected and realistically simulates the spread through your party to create a fresh experience for each playthrough.


The Suffering feels like it would need very few tweaks to make it feel like a modern game. With a larger focus on action and top-notch character designs, it doesn’t suffer from the sluggish controls that defined earlier horror titles. Giving the game some modern polish, both in shooting and graphics, would make for one hell of an experience. Playing a possibly innocent man in a haunted prison would also give developers an interesting opportunity to weave in some modern political themes, adding a richness and relevance to the narrative.


Another series Capcom could pull out of their back catalog would be the samurai vs demons series Onimusha. Between Sekiro, Nioh, and Ghosts of Tsushima, samurai games seem to be having a moment right now, making it the perfect time to revisit the franchise. Giving the game more crisp and responsive controls while addressing some of the more annoying design decisions of the past would help make it a worthy entry in the recent samurai subgenre.


I always thought this unique combination of survival horror and RPG deserves to be talked about in the same breath as other PlayStation horror classics like Resident Evil and Silent Hill. Parasite Eve was the first time I had seen such a grounded setting for an RPG, and its mash-up of cop story and apocalyptic body horror was such a fresh take on the genre. The addition of realtime movement to turn-based battles also felt significant at the time, making the combat feel much more dynamic. The Final Fantasy VII Remake already has modernized that combination, so they would be fools not to apply this gameplay to a Parasite Eve remake.

What classic horror titles would you like to see remade on the next generation of hardware? 


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