Thu. Feb 29th, 2024

The horror genre has been a staple in the gaming industry for decades, with games like Resident Evil, Silent Hill, and Amnesia captivating players with their spine-chilling stories and terrifying gameplay. But, have you ever wondered what was the first horror game ever created? The origins of horror games can be traced back to the early days of gaming, with several games being credited as the first horror game ever made. In this article, we will explore the history of horror games and delve into the debate of what was the first horror game ever created. So, get ready to uncover the dark and eerie world of the first horror game, and discover how it paved the way for the horror games we know and love today.

Quick Answer:
The first horror game ever created is widely considered to be “The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask,” which was released in 2000 for the Nintendo 64 console. The game was developed by Nintendo and directed by Eiji Aonuma. It is a sequel to the 1998 game “The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time” and is set in the fictional land of Hyrule. The game features a unique gameplay mechanic in which the player must repeat three days of gameplay in a loop, as the world is set to end on the fourth day. The game is known for its dark and eerie atmosphere, and it features many iconic moments that have become beloved by fans. Despite its age, “Majora’s Mask” still holds up as a terrifying and memorable horror game.

The Evolution of Horror Games

Early Text-Based Games

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was released in 1998 for the Nintendo 64 console.
  • It was developed and published by Nintendo.
  • The game features a hybrid of action-adventure and role-playing game elements.
  • Players control the character Link, who must save Princess Zelda and defeat the villainous Ganondorf.
  • The game’s atmosphere and setting are heavily influenced by fantasy and folklore.

Dungeons & Dragons

  • Dungeons & Dragons is a tabletop role-playing game that was first published in 1974.
  • It was created by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson.
  • The game is set in a fictional world called the “Dungeon” and involves players creating characters and embarking on quests.
  • The game’s horror elements were largely influenced by H.P. Lovecraft’s works.

H.P. Lovecraft

  • H.P. Lovecraft was an American author who wrote numerous horror and fantasy stories in the early 20th century.
  • His works have had a significant impact on the horror genre, particularly in video games.
  • Lovecraft’s stories often involve ancient beings and cosmic horrors that threaten humanity.
  • Many of his works have been adapted into games, including the classic text-based game Zork.

Zork

  • Zork is a text-based adventure game that was first released in 1979.
  • It was developed by the Harvard University students and later published by Infocom.
  • The game is set in the fictional land of Zork, where players must solve puzzles and explore various locations.
  • The game’s horror elements are largely influenced by Lovecraft’s works.

The Suffering

  • The Suffering is a survival horror game that was released in 2004 for the Xbox, PlayStation 2, and PC platforms.
  • It was developed by Midway Games and published by THQ.
  • The game follows the story of a prisoner who must survive a horrific ordeal on a mysterious island.
  • The game’s atmosphere and setting are heavily influenced by the works of H.P. Lovecraft.

Survival Horror

  • Survival horror is a subgenre of horror games that emphasizes survival and escape from dangerous situations.
  • The subgenre emerged in the late 1980s and early 1990s, with games like Resident Evil and Silent Hill.
  • These games often feature limited resources and intense, terrifying encounters with monsters and other supernatural enemies.
  • The subgenre has had a significant impact on the horror game industry and has inspired numerous sequels and imitators.

Tormented Souls

  • Tormented Souls is a survival horror game that was released in 2002 for the PlayStation 2 and PC platforms.
  • It was developed by Fatfish Games and published by Tecmo.
  • The game follows the story of a detective who must investigate a series of strange murders in a haunted mansion.

Fear Effect

  • Fear Effect is a survival horror game that was released in 2000 for the PlayStation platform.
  • It was developed by Black Lake Studios and published by Universal Interactive.
  • The game follows the story of a team of mercenaries who must navigate a haunted ship and survive encounters with supernatural enemies.

Resident Evil

  • Resident Evil is a survival horror game that was first released in 1996 for the PlayStation console.
  • It was developed and published by Capcom.
  • The game follows the story of a special forces team

The Rise of Multiplayer Horror Games

Key takeaway: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, a hybrid action-adventure and role-playing game, was released in 1998 for the Nintendo 64 console and was heavily influenced by fantasy and folklore. The game’s atmosphere and setting are heavily influenced by the works of H.P. Lovecraft. The Suffering is a survival horror game that was released in 2002 for the PlayStation 2 and PC platforms. The game’s atmosphere and setting are heavily influenced by the works of H.P. Lovecraft. The Rise of Multiplayer Horror Games. Outlast is a first-person survival horror game developed by Red Barrels, a small Canadian game development studio. The game was released in 2013 for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Linux. It features a single player mode and a multiplayer mode, where players must survive in a creepy asylum filled with terrifying supernatural enemies.

Outlast

  • Outlast is a first-person survival horror game developed by Red Barrels, a small Canadian game development studio. The game was released in 2013 for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Linux, Mac OS X, and Wii U.
  • In Outlast, the player takes on the role of a journalist named Miles Upshur, who decides to investigate the mysterious happenings at an abandoned asylum. The game’s storyline is set in the 1990s, and the player must navigate through the creepy asylum while avoiding being caught by the deranged patients.
  • The game’s mechanics focus on stealth and survival, as the player has no weapons to defend themselves. Instead, they must rely on their wits and their camera, which can be used to capture images of the environment to help them solve puzzles and avoid danger.
  • Outlast was praised for its immersive atmosphere, tense gameplay, and unique approach to horror. The game’s success led to the development of two sequels, Outlast 2 and Outlast Trinity, which further expanded on the story and gameplay mechanics of the original game.
  • Outlast is often cited as one of the most terrifying games ever made, and it has inspired numerous other horror games to follow in its footsteps. The game’s focus on stealth and survival gameplay, combined with its atmospheric sound design and unsettling environments, make it a true classic of the horror genre.

Until Dawn

Until Dawn is a multiplayer horror game developed by Supermassive Games and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. The game was released in 2015 for the PlayStation 4 console and was later ported to the PlayStation 5 in 2020.

Quantic Dream

Quantic Dream is a French video game developer known for creating interactive drama and horror games. They are the creators of the popular game series Heavy Rain, Beyond: Two Souls, and Detroit: Become Human.

Heavy Rain

Heavy Rain is a psychological horror game developed by Quantic Dream and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. The game was released in 2010 for the PlayStation 3 console and follows the story of four characters who are connected by a serial killer known as the Origami Killer.

Beyond: Two Souls

Beyond: Two Souls is a psychological horror game developed by Quantic Dream and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. The game was released in 2013 for the PlayStation 3 console and follows the story of a young girl named Jodie Holmes and a mysterious entity known as Aiden.

Life is Strange

Life is Strange is a episodic graphic adventure game developed by Dontnod Entertainment and published by Square Enix. The game was released in 2015 for Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and iOS. The game follows the story of Max Caulfield, a photography student who discovers she has the ability to rewind time.

Horror Game Merchandise

Collectible Figures

Collectible figures have become a popular form of merchandise for horror games, offering fans a chance to own a piece of their favorite game. Some of the most popular collectible figure brands for horror games include NECA, McFarlane Toys, Funko Pop!, The Walking Dead, and Halloween.

NECA

NECA, or National Entertainment Collectibles Association, is a leading manufacturer of licensed collectibles. They have produced a range of horror game-inspired figures, including characters from the Resident Evil, Alien, and Predator franchises. These highly detailed figures are often based on iconic scenes from the games and feature intricate sculpts and paint applications.

McFarlane Toys

McFarlane Toys is another popular manufacturer of collectible figures, with a range of horror-themed offerings. Their line of Five Nights at Freddy’s figures is particularly popular, featuring the infamous animatronic characters from the game. These figures are highly detailed and come with a range of accessories, such as masks and plush toys.

Funko Pop!

Funko Pop! is a brand known for its cute, cartoonish figures, but they have also released a range of horror-themed figures. Their line of Nightmare Before Christmas figures is particularly popular, featuring characters from the beloved Tim Burton film. They have also released figures based on classic horror movies like Halloween and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead franchise has inspired a range of collectible figures, including those from the popular television show and comic book series. These figures feature characters from the show, such as Rick Grimes and Daryl Dixon, and are highly detailed and accurate. They often come with accessories, such as weapons and clothing, to recreate iconic scenes from the show.

Halloween

Halloween is a time for spooky fun, and collectible figures are a popular way to celebrate the holiday. There are a range of Halloween-themed figures available, including those based on classic horror movies like The Nightmare Before Christmas and The Adams Family. These figures often feature colorful, whimsical designs and are a fun way to get in the Halloween spirit.

Video Game-Inspired Clothing

Hoodie

The hoodie is a popular choice among horror game fans, as it provides a comfortable and stylish way to show off their love for the genre. Many hoodies feature designs inspired by classic horror games, such as “Silent Hill” or “Resident Evil,” and are often made of high-quality materials that provide warmth and durability. Fans can wear these hoodies to conventions, gaming events, or just as a casual piece of clothing.

T-Shirt

T-shirts are a staple of horror game merchandise, and for good reason. They are comfortable, affordable, and can be worn in a variety of settings. Many horror game t-shirts feature iconic imagery from popular games, such as the logo of “Friday the 13th” or the mask of “Halloween.” Fans can also find t-shirts that feature more obscure games, making a statement and showing their love for lesser-known titles.

Jacket

Horror game fans who want to make a statement with their fashion choices may opt for a jacket inspired by their favorite game. These jackets can range from replicas of the clothing worn by characters in the game to more abstract designs that incorporate iconic imagery. Some jackets are made of leather, providing a tough and rugged look, while others are made of thicker materials to provide warmth and protection against the elements.

Cap

Caps are a great way to show off a love for horror games without being too overt. Many caps feature designs that are subtle enough to be worn in casual settings, but still provide a nod to the wearer’s favorite game. These designs can range from simple logos to more elaborate graphics that incorporate imagery from the game. Fans can wear these caps to conventions, gaming events, or just as a casual accessory.

Backpack

Backpacks are a practical choice for horror game fans who want to show off their love for the genre while also keeping their gear organized. Many backpacks feature designs inspired by popular horror games, such as “The Last of Us” or “Resident Evil.” These backpacks often have multiple compartments for storing items, making them ideal for trips to conventions or gaming events. They can also be used as a casual backpack for everyday use.

Horror-Themed Home Decor

Posters

Horror-themed posters are a popular way to add a spooky touch to your home decor. These posters often feature iconic horror movie or game characters, such as Freddy Krueger or Jason Voorhees, and can be displayed in any room of the house. Some posters even come with special effects, such as glow-in-the-dark or light-up features, to add an extra eerie feel to your space.

Statues

Horror-themed statues are another great way to bring a touch of terror to your home decor. These statues can range from small, desk-sized figures to large, life-sized replicas of iconic horror characters. Some statues even come with light-up features or sound effects to enhance the creepy atmosphere. Statues can be placed in any room of the house, but are often displayed in the living room or hallway to create a spooky entryway.

Lights

Horror-themed lights are a unique and fun way to add some scary flair to your home decor. These lights can come in a variety of shapes and sizes, from small, battery-operated lights to large, plug-in lights that cover entire walls. Some lights even feature motion sensors or sound activators to create a more interactive experience. These lights can be used in any room of the house, but are often displayed in the basement or attic to create a creepy ambiance.

Wall Art

Horror-themed wall art is a great way to add a spooky touch to any room in your house. This can include anything from paintings and prints to tapestries and wall hangings. Some wall art even features special effects, such as glow-in-the-dark or light-up features, to create a more eerie atmosphere. Wall art can be displayed in any room of the house, but is often displayed in the bedroom or living room to create a unique and spooky feel.

Bedding

Horror-themed bedding is a fun and creative way to add a touch of terror to your sleeping space. This can include anything from sheets and comforters to pillowcases and blankets. Some bedding even features special effects, such as glow-in-the-dark or light-up features, to create a more eerie atmosphere. Horror-themed bedding can be used in any bedroom, but is often used in the master bedroom to create a unique and spooky sleeping experience.

The Impact of Horror Games on Popular Culture

Horror Games and Film

Remakes

One of the most significant ways in which horror games have influenced film is through remakes. Many classic horror films have been remade with updated visuals and special effects, and these remakes often incorporate elements from popular horror games. For example, the 2003 remake of “House of Wax” featured a scene in which a character is chased by a monster through a dark maze, a scene that echoes the gameplay of popular horror games like “Resident Evil.”

Adaptations

In addition to remakes, horror games have also influenced the adaptation of classic horror literature into film. Many horror games are based on classic horror novels, such as “The Silent Hill” series, which is based on the novel of the same name by horror author Masahiro Balzac. These adaptations often draw inspiration from the gameplay mechanics and aesthetics of horror games, incorporating elements like jump scares, puzzle-solving, and exploration into the film’s narrative.

Influences

Horror games have also had a significant impact on the themes and motifs of horror films. Many popular horror games, such as “Silent Hill” and “Resident Evil,” feature monsters and other supernatural entities that have become iconic in popular culture. These creatures have inspired countless horror films, and their distinctive designs and abilities have influenced the way that filmmakers approach the creation of monsters and other supernatural entities.

Reinterpretations

Finally, horror games have also inspired reinterpretations of classic horror stories and myths. Many horror games, such as “Until Dawn” and “Layers of Fear,” are based on well-known horror stories and myths, but they reinterpret these tales in new and unique ways. These reinterpretations often draw inspiration from the gameplay mechanics and aesthetics of horror games, incorporating elements like branching storylines, multiple endings, and interactive gameplay into the narrative.

Horror Games and Literature

Adaptations

The relationship between horror games and literature can be seen in the many adaptations of classic horror stories into video game form. For example, the 1998 game Silent Hill was inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft and William S. Burroughs, and features a story that incorporates elements of both. Similarly, the 2005 game F.E.A.R. was based on the novel The Fear by D.E. Witkin, and the 2015 game Until Dawn was adapted from a script originally written for a movie.

Influences

Horror games have also been influenced by literature, with many developers drawing inspiration from classic horror novels and short stories. For example, the 1993 game Alone in the Dark was heavily influenced by the works of H.P. Lovecraft, while the 1999 game Resident Evil was inspired by the works of Bram Stoker and Mary Shelley. In addition, the 2008 game Dead Space was influenced by the science fiction horror of author Isaac Asimov.

Reinterpretations

Horror games have also been used to reinterpret classic horror stories, with developers putting their own unique spin on well-known tales. For example, the 2014 game Alien: Isolation is a survival horror game that is set in the same universe as the Alien film series, but tells a completely original story. Similarly, the 2015 game Layers of Fear is a psychological horror game that is loosely based on the life and work of actor and film director Alfred Hitchcock.

Horror Games and Television

The relationship between horror games and television is a symbiotic one, with both mediums drawing inspiration from one another to create some of the most iconic horror stories of our time. Horror games have served as a source of inspiration for television shows, with many adaptations of popular games appearing on the small screen. These adaptations often stay true to the source material, while also adding new elements to make the story more compelling for viewers.

Horror games have also had a significant influence on television, with many shows incorporating elements of horror games into their storylines. These influences can range from the use of game mechanics, such as puzzle-solving and exploration, to the incorporation of iconic monsters and villains from popular horror games. By drawing on the rich lore and iconography of horror games, television shows have been able to tap into the same sense of dread and fear that makes these games so captivating.

In addition to adaptations and influences, horror games have also inspired reinterpretations of classic horror stories on television. By drawing on the visual and narrative elements of horror games, these shows have been able to bring a fresh perspective to well-worn tropes, while still staying true to the spirit of the original stories. This has led to a renewed interest in horror as a genre, with audiences eager to see how their favorite games will be adapted for the small screen.

Overall, the relationship between horror games and television is a complex one, with both mediums constantly influencing and inspiring each other. As the popularity of horror games continues to grow, it is likely that we will see even more adaptations, influences, and reinterpretations in the world of television.

Horror Games and Music

Horror games have had a significant impact on popular culture, and music has played a significant role in this impact. Soundtracks for horror games have become iconic, and they often create a terrifying atmosphere that enhances the player’s experience.

Soundtracks

Soundtracks for horror games are designed to create a sense of fear and tension. Many horror games have memorable soundtracks that are often composed of eerie and unsettling music. These soundtracks are carefully crafted to enhance the game’s atmosphere and create a sense of dread. Some of the most iconic horror game soundtracks include the music from the “Silent Hill” series, “Resident Evil,” and “The Last of Us.”

Music Videos

Music videos for horror games have become increasingly popular in recent years. These videos often feature footage from the game, along with the music from the soundtrack. They are designed to promote the game and create a sense of excitement and anticipation among fans. Some of the most popular horror game music videos include those for “The Last of Us Part II,” “Resident Evil Village,” and “Silent Hill: Shattered Memories.”

Collaborations

Horror games have also inspired collaborations between video game music composers and other musicians. For example, the composer of the “Silent Hill” series, Akira Yamaoka, has collaborated with the band Radwimps on the soundtrack for the movie “Your Name.” Other horror game composers have collaborated with metal bands, electronic artists, and other musicians to create unique and memorable music.

Horror games have also had an impact on popular music outside of the video game industry. Many musicians have cited horror games as an influence on their music, and some have even created music inspired by their favorite horror games. For example, the band Ghost created a song called “From the Pinnacle to the Pit” that was inspired by the “Silent Hill” series. Other bands, such as Nine Inch Nails and Marilyn Manson, have also been influenced by horror games and have incorporated elements of horror into their music.

Overall, horror games and music have a strong connection, and this connection has had a significant impact on popular culture. Soundtracks, music videos, collaborations, and influences have all contributed to the success of horror games and have helped to create a unique and terrifying atmosphere that has captivated audiences for decades.

FAQs

1. What is considered the first horror game ever created?

The first horror game ever created is considered to be “Haunted House” which was released in 1981 for the Atari 2600 console. The game was developed by Atari and designed by Warren Robinett. It was one of the first games to use a text-based interface and featured a creepy mansion that players had to navigate through while avoiding ghosts and other terrifying creatures.

2. Who created the first horror game?

The first horror game, “Haunted House,” was developed by Atari and designed by Warren Robinett. Warren Robinett was a game designer and programmer who worked for Atari during the early 1980s. He is also known for creating the game “Adventure,” which was another early text-based game.

3. What was the inspiration behind the first horror game?

The inspiration behind the first horror game, “Haunted House,” was likely influenced by classic horror movies and literature. The game features a haunted mansion that players must navigate through, which is reminiscent of classic horror settings such as the Overlook Hotel from Stephen King’s “The Shining” or the haunted house from the 1958 horror film “House on Haunted Hill.”

4. How did the first horror game differ from other games at the time?

The first horror game, “Haunted House,” differed from other games at the time in several ways. Firstly, it was one of the first games to use a text-based interface, which added to the game’s atmosphere of suspense and mystery. Additionally, the game featured a unique gameplay mechanic where players had to navigate through a maze-like mansion while avoiding ghosts and other terrifying creatures. Finally, the game’s graphics were also groundbreaking for their time, featuring detailed illustrations that added to the game’s overall sense of dread.

5. How did players control the character in the first horror game?

In the first horror game, “Haunted House,” players controlled the character using the joystick on the Atari 2600 console. The joystick was used to move the character left, right, up, or down through the various rooms and corridors of the haunted mansion. Players had to navigate through the mansion while avoiding ghosts and other terrifying creatures that would appear out of nowhere.

Playing THE FIRST HORROR GAME

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