Horror games have always been a popular genre among gamers, but have you ever wondered why they have the power to frighten us? Is it the eerie sound effects, the creepy atmosphere or the terrifying jump scares? In this article, we will delve into the world of mystery horror games and explore the psychological reasons behind why they have the ability to scare us. From the fear of the unknown to the power of imagination, we will uncover the secrets behind these spine-chilling games and why they continue to captivate and terrify players worldwide. So, buckle up and get ready to enter the dark and mysterious world of horror games!
Mystery horror games have the power to frighten us because they tap into our primal fears and uncertainties. They often involve unknown or supernatural elements, which can create a sense of unease and disorientation. The suspense and tension that builds as players try to uncover the truth and evade danger can be incredibly intense. Additionally, the interactive nature of these games allows players to experience fear in a more immersive and personal way, as they are actively making choices that impact the outcome. The combination of psychological manipulation, atmospheric sound and visuals, and interactivity creates a unique and effective way to scare and entertain us.
The Psychology of Fear in Mystery Horror Games
Understanding the Human Fear Response
- The human fear response is a complex and intricate system that is triggered by various stimuli.
- The fear response is mediated by the amygdala, a structure in the brain that is responsible for processing emotions.
- The amygdala receives information from various senses, including sight, sound, and touch, and uses this information to assess potential threats.
- When the amygdala perceives a potential threat, it sends signals to the hypothalamus, which in turn activates the sympathetic nervous system.
- The sympathetic nervous system prepares the body for the “fight or flight” response, increasing heart rate, respiration, and blood pressure.
- The fear response is also influenced by individual differences in personality, prior experiences, and cultural factors.
- In mystery horror games, the fear response is triggered by the combination of ambiguous and unpredictable events, which create a sense of uncertainty and anxiety.
- The player’s imagination and cognitive processes play a significant role in creating fear, as they fill in the gaps and make assumptions about what is happening in the game world.
- The anticipation of fear, rather than the actual occurrence of a frightening event, can be more potent in creating a terrifying experience.
- The fear response is not only limited to the game but can also spill over into real life, affecting the player’s emotional state and behavior.
The Role of Ambiguity and Uncertainty in Fear
Ambiguity and uncertainty play a significant role in creating fear in mystery horror games. These elements are designed to create a sense of unease and disorientation in the player, which in turn heightens their emotional state and increases their vulnerability to fear.
The Power of Ambiguity
Ambiguity is a key element in mystery horror games. It creates an atmosphere of uncertainty and confusion, which is a potent source of fear. When players are faced with ambiguous situations, they are forced to rely on their imagination to fill in the gaps, which can lead to a sense of dread and unease. This is because the brain is wired to fill in missing information, and when it is unable to do so, it can create a sense of anxiety and fear.
The Role of Uncertainty
Uncertainty is another crucial element in mystery horror games. It creates a sense of unease and tension, which is a hallmark of fear. When players are uncertain about what is happening, they are more likely to experience fear, as they are unable to predict what will happen next. This sense of uncertainty can be heightened by the use of puzzles, clues, and other gameplay mechanics that force players to make decisions without having all the information.
The Interplay of Ambiguity and Uncertainty
The interplay of ambiguity and uncertainty is a powerful tool in mystery horror games. When these elements are combined, they create a sense of disorientation and confusion that can be overwhelming. This is because the brain is forced to grapple with two conflicting sources of information, which can lead to a sense of anxiety and fear.
In mystery horror games, the interplay of ambiguity and uncertainty is often used to create a sense of unease and disorientation. This is achieved through the use of atmospheric sound effects, cryptic messages, and other gameplay mechanics that are designed to create a sense of confusion and uncertainty. By combining these elements, game designers are able to create a sense of fear that is both immersive and intense.
In conclusion, ambiguity and uncertainty play a crucial role in creating fear in mystery horror games. These elements are designed to create a sense of unease and disorientation, which in turn heightens the player’s emotional state and increases their vulnerability to fear. By combining these elements, game designers are able to create a sense of fear that is both immersive and intense, making mystery horror games a powerful and terrifying experience for players.
Perception and Suspense in Mystery Horror Games
One of the key elements that contribute to the fear-inducing power of mystery horror games is the interplay between perception and suspense. The way these games are designed to create a sense of uncertainty and unpredictability, which triggers the human brain’s natural fear response.
Ambiguity and Misdirection
Mystery horror games often use ambiguity and misdirection to create a sense of unease and uncertainty. This can manifest in a number of ways, such as intentionally vague or misleading clues, ambiguous or open-ended storytelling, and unexpected plot twists. These elements create a sense of disorientation and make it difficult for the player to fully grasp the situation, which can be a significant source of fear.
Another way that mystery horror games create suspense is through their unpredictability. By keeping players guessing about what will happen next, these games create a sense of uncertainty that can be terrifying. This can be achieved through a variety of means, such as unexpected jump scares, non-linear storytelling, and hidden elements that are only revealed after multiple playthroughs.
Anticipation and Anxiety
Finally, mystery horror games often rely on anticipation and anxiety to create a sense of fear. By building up tension and anticipation over time, these games create a sense of dread that can be incredibly unsettling. This can be achieved through a variety of means, such as foreboding music, ominous sound effects, and foreshadowing.
Overall, the interplay between perception and suspense is a key element in the fear-inducing power of mystery horror games. By using ambiguity, unpredictability, and anticipation and anxiety, these games are able to create a sense of unease and uncertainty that can be incredibly terrifying.
The Impact of Atmosphere and Immersion
One of the key factors that contribute to the power of mystery horror games to frighten us is the impact of atmosphere and immersion.
Atmosphere refers to the overall mood and feeling of a game, which is created through a combination of visuals, sound effects, music, and storytelling. In mystery horror games, the atmosphere is often designed to be eerie, unsettling, and tense, with dark and foreboding environments, unsettling sound effects, and ominous music. This creates a sense of unease and discomfort that can heighten our feelings of fear and anxiety.
Immersion refers to the feeling of being fully engrossed in a game, losing oneself in the game world and its story. In mystery horror games, immersion is often achieved through a combination of storytelling, character development, and game mechanics. By creating a rich and detailed game world, with believable characters and a compelling story, mystery horror games can draw players into the game and make them feel like they are part of the action.
Additionally, mystery horror games often use game mechanics to enhance immersion, such as limited save points, restricted inventory, and limited control over the character’s actions. These mechanics can create a sense of vulnerability and helplessness, making players feel like they are at the mercy of the game world and its dangers.
Overall, the impact of atmosphere and immersion in mystery horror games can create a powerful and frightening experience for players, drawing them into a world of darkness and fear, and making them feel like they are truly part of the story.
Common Techniques Used in Mystery Horror Games
Jump Scares and Startle Response
Jump scares and startle responses are common techniques used in mystery horror games to elicit a visceral reaction from players. These tactics are designed to trigger the body’s natural fight or flight response, which can lead to feelings of fear and anxiety.
Jump scares are sudden, unexpected events that occur at specific points in the game. They are typically used to create a shocking or frightening experience for the player. For example, a character may suddenly appear out of nowhere, or a loud noise may occur without warning. These events are carefully timed to catch the player off guard and create a startle response.
The startle response is a physiological reaction that occurs when the body is surprised or startled. It involves a rapid release of adrenaline, which can cause the heart to race, muscles to tense, and breathing to become rapid and shallow. This response is designed to prepare the body for a fight or flight response, which can help the player feel more immersed in the game.
However, it’s important to note that jump scares and startle responses can be overused in mystery horror games. If they are too frequent or predictable, they can become tedious and lose their effectiveness. To avoid this, game designers must carefully balance the use of these techniques with other elements of the game, such as storytelling and atmosphere.
Additionally, some players may find jump scares and startle responses to be frustrating or even triggering. For these players, it’s important for game designers to provide options for adjusting the game’s difficulty or turning off certain features that may be too intense. Ultimately, the effectiveness of jump scares and startle responses depends on the individual player’s preferences and tolerance for scary content.
Tension and Anticipation
Tension and anticipation are two common techniques used in mystery horror games to create a sense of fear and unease in players. These techniques work by building up the player’s expectations and creating a sense of uncertainty and danger.
One way that mystery horror games create tension is by building suspense. This is often achieved through the use of atmospheric sound effects, such as creaking doors, eerie music, and strange noises, which create an unsettling atmosphere and build up the player’s anticipation. Additionally, the use of jump scares and sudden loud noises can also create a sense of shock and fear in players.
Ambiguity and Uncertainty
Another way that mystery horror games create tension is by using ambiguity and uncertainty to create a sense of unease in players. This can be achieved through the use of obscure clues, unexplained events, and unanswered questions, which create a sense of mystery and encourage players to continue exploring the game world in order to uncover the truth.
Limited Resources and Information
Mystery horror games often limit the resources and information available to players, which can create a sense of fear and vulnerability. This can be achieved through the use of limited ammunition, limited health, and limited access to certain areas of the game world. This creates a sense of urgency and encourages players to make difficult decisions in order to survive.
Fear of the Unknown
Finally, mystery horror games often tap into the human fear of the unknown. By creating an environment that is unfamiliar and unpredictable, players are forced to confront their own fears and anxieties. This can be achieved through the use of dark and claustrophobic environments, unsettling creatures, and supernatural events that defy explanation.
Overall, tension and anticipation are powerful tools in the creation of mystery horror games. By building up the player’s expectations and creating a sense of uncertainty and danger, these games are able to tap into the human fear of the unknown and create a sense of fear and unease in players.
Unreliable Narrators and Red Herrings
Mystery horror games often employ the use of unreliable narrators and red herrings to create a sense of unease and tension in the player. An unreliable narrator is a character whose perspective is untrustworthy, either because they are mentally unstable, dishonest, or simply misinformed. This technique is used to create a sense of uncertainty and doubt in the player, as they are never quite sure what is happening or who to trust.
Red herrings, on the other hand, are false clues or leads that are designed to mislead the player. They are often used to create a sense of false security or to distract the player from the true source of danger. Red herrings can be used to build tension and suspense, as the player is constantly questioning what is real and what is not.
Both of these techniques can be highly effective in creating a sense of fear and unease in the player. By making the player question their own perceptions and beliefs, mystery horror games can create a deeply unsettling experience that stays with the player long after they have finished the game.
Psychological Manipulation and Social Anxieties
Mystery horror games have the power to frighten us due to their use of psychological manipulation and social anxieties. These games create an atmosphere of tension and fear by exploiting our innate fears and anxieties, making us question our own perceptions and beliefs.
One of the primary ways that mystery horror games manipulate our psychology is through the use of isolation and vulnerability. By placing the player in a solitary environment, these games create a sense of helplessness and vulnerability, making us feel exposed and defenseless. This sense of isolation can also lead to feelings of loneliness and despair, which can be deeply unsettling and unnerving.
Another way that mystery horror games manipulate our psychology is through the use of ambiguity and uncertainty. These games often leave us with unanswered questions and ambiguous clues, creating a sense of unease and uncertainty. This uncertainty can make us feel unsettled and uneasy, as we struggle to make sense of the world around us.
Finally, mystery horror games also tap into our social anxieties by challenging our sense of belonging and connection. These games often depict isolated and desolate environments, which can make us feel alone and disconnected from the world around us. This sense of isolation can be deeply unsettling, as it challenges our fundamental need for connection and belonging.
Overall, mystery horror games have the power to frighten us due to their use of psychological manipulation and social anxieties. By exploiting our innate fears and anxieties, these games create an atmosphere of tension and fear that can be deeply unsettling and unnerving.
The Power of Isolation and Vulnerability
Isolation and vulnerability are two common techniques used in mystery horror games to create a sense of fear and unease in players. These techniques tap into basic human emotions and instincts, making the experience all the more immersive and terrifying.
Isolation is a powerful tool in mystery horror games because it removes players from the safety of their everyday surroundings and places them in a vulnerable situation. When players are isolated, they are removed from the familiar and the comforting, and placed in a world that is unknown and potentially dangerous. This creates a sense of disorientation and uncertainty, which can be terrifying for players.
Furthermore, isolation can also make players feel powerless and helpless. When players are alone and cut off from the outside world, they are more vulnerable to the dangers that surround them. This sense of vulnerability can be heightened by the fact that players are often alone in the dark, with only the dim light of their screen to guide them.
Vulnerability is another technique used in mystery horror games to create a sense of fear and unease. When players are vulnerable, they are more open to the dangers that surround them. This vulnerability can be created in a number of ways, such as by making players physically weak, emotionally fragile, or mentally unstable.
For example, in some mystery horror games, players may be weakened by injury or illness, making them more vulnerable to the dangers that surround them. In other games, players may be emotionally fragile, with a history of trauma or loss that makes them more susceptible to fear and anxiety. Finally, some mystery horror games may make players mentally unstable, with a history of hallucinations or delusions that blur the line between reality and fantasy.
Overall, the power of isolation and vulnerability in mystery horror games is a powerful tool for creating fear and unease in players. By removing players from the safety of their everyday surroundings and placing them in a vulnerable situation, and by making players vulnerable through physical, emotional, or mental means, mystery horror games can create a terrifying experience that stays with players long after they have finished the game.
The Impact of Mystery Horror Games on the Gaming Industry
Evolution of the Genre
Mystery horror games have been a staple of the gaming industry for decades, evolving from simple text-based adventures to immersive, interactive experiences. The evolution of the genre can be traced back to the early days of video games, where simple games like “Haunted House” and “The Legend of Zelda” paved the way for more complex and terrifying experiences.
One of the earliest examples of a mystery horror game was “Myst”, a puzzle-adventure game released in 1993. The game was groundbreaking in its use of atmospheric soundscapes and hauntingly beautiful graphics, which helped to create a sense of unease and tension in players. This game was a significant step forward in the evolution of the genre, as it demonstrated the potential for horror games to be more than just jump-scare-fests.
As technology advanced, so too did the capabilities of mystery horror games. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, games like “Resident Evil” and “Silent Hill” revolutionized the genre by incorporating more sophisticated storytelling and character development. These games relied less on cheap scares and more on creating a sense of dread and unease through their immersive worlds and compelling narratives.
Today, mystery horror games continue to evolve and push the boundaries of what is possible in the gaming world. With the rise of virtual reality and advanced game engines, developers are able to create more realistic and terrifying experiences than ever before. From the “Amnesia” series to “Outlast”, mystery horror games continue to captivate and terrify players around the world.
In conclusion, the evolution of the mystery horror game genre has been a gradual process, with each new generation of games building on the successes of the previous ones. From simple text-based adventures to immersive virtual reality experiences, mystery horror games have come a long way, and they show no signs of slowing down anytime soon.
Popularity and Cultural Significance
Mystery horror games have gained immense popularity in recent years, with gamers all over the world being drawn to their unique blend of thrills and challenges. These games have become a cultural phenomenon, with many people eagerly anticipating the release of new titles and discussing them online.
One reason for the popularity of mystery horror games is their ability to tap into deep-seated fears and anxieties. Many people enjoy the adrenaline rush that comes from being scared, and these games provide a safe and controlled environment in which to experience that fear. Additionally, the sense of mystery and uncertainty that these games provide can be incredibly engaging, as players are drawn into the story and characters.
Another factor contributing to the popularity of mystery horror games is their versatility. These games can be enjoyed by a wide range of players, from casual gamers to hardcore enthusiasts. They can be played on a variety of platforms, from consoles to mobile devices, and can be customized to suit different levels of difficulty.
The cultural significance of mystery horror games cannot be overstated. They have inspired countless imitators and have helped to shape the wider gaming industry. They have also spawned a whole subculture of fans who are passionate about the genre and its unique qualities. In many ways, mystery horror games have become a defining feature of modern gaming, and their impact is likely to be felt for years to come.
The Debate Surrounding the Ethics of Scaring Players
Arguments for and Against the Use of Fear in Games
Arguments for the Use of Fear in Games
- Immersion: Fear can create a more immersive experience for players, making them feel more engaged and involved in the game world.
- Thrill-seeking: Some players enjoy the adrenaline rush that comes with being scared, and may even seek out games that intentionally frighten them.
- Storytelling: Fear can be a powerful tool for storytelling, allowing game designers to create a sense of tension and suspense that can enhance the narrative.
- Memorable experiences: Games that use fear effectively can create memorable experiences that players may remember and talk about for years to come.
Arguments Against the Use of Fear in Games
- Trauma: Some players may be sensitive to fear and may experience trauma as a result of playing games that intentionally frighten them.
- Ethical concerns: There are ethical concerns surrounding the use of fear in games, particularly when it comes to games that may be played by children or vulnerable adults.
- Desensitization: Some argue that the use of fear in games can desensitize players to real-world horrors, making them less able to cope with the challenges of everyday life.
- Overuse: There is a risk of overuse when it comes to the use of fear in games, with some designers relying on jump scares and other cheap thrills to keep players engaged.
The Line Between Entertainment and Trauma
One of the most controversial aspects of mystery horror games is the line between entertainment and trauma. On one hand, these games are designed to scare players and create a sense of fear and tension. On the other hand, some argue that these games can cross the line into causing actual trauma for some players.
The debate surrounding the ethics of scaring players is complex and multifaceted. Some argue that mystery horror games are simply a form of entertainment, and that players should be able to make an informed decision about whether or not they want to participate. Others argue that the power dynamic between the player and the game designer is inherently problematic, and that some players may be more vulnerable to the emotional impact of the game than others.
Ultimately, the line between entertainment and trauma is a difficult one to draw. It is important for game designers to be mindful of the potential impact of their games on players, and to take steps to ensure that players are able to make informed decisions about whether or not they want to participate. It is also important for players to be aware of their own limits and to take breaks or step away from the game if they feel overwhelmed.
Despite the controversy surrounding the ethics of mystery horror games, there is no denying their power to engage and captivate players. Whether or not you find them entertaining or disturbing, these games continue to be a popular and influential genre in the world of gaming.
The Future of Mystery Horror Games
Technological Advancements and New Possibilities
Enhanced Realism through Virtual Reality
As technology continues to advance, virtual reality (VR) is becoming an increasingly popular medium for mystery horror games. With VR, players are immersed in a fully-realized world, with the ability to look around and interact with their surroundings in a way that was previously impossible in traditional gaming. This enhanced level of realism can create a more intense and immersive experience for players, as they feel like they are truly in the game world.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is also being used to create more dynamic and unpredictable storytelling in mystery horror games. With AI, game designers can create characters that are capable of making decisions and reacting to player actions in real-time, creating a more unpredictable and terrifying experience for players. This technology can also be used to create more complex and intricate puzzles, which can add an extra layer of challenge and excitement to the game.
Another area where technology is driving innovation in mystery horror games is through multiplayer experiences. With the rise of online gaming, players are now able to share their experiences with others in real-time, creating a sense of community and shared terror. Multiplayer games can also create a more dynamic and unpredictable experience, as players must work together to solve puzzles and survive against the horrors that lie within the game world.
The Power of Uncertainty
Finally, technology is also allowing game designers to create more ambiguous and uncertain experiences in mystery horror games. By using techniques such as randomized level designs and hidden paths, players are never quite sure what they will encounter next. This sense of uncertainty and unpredictability can be incredibly unnerving, as players are constantly on edge, never knowing when or where the next scare will come from.
Overall, technological advancements are providing game designers with new and exciting possibilities for mystery horror games. With VR, AI, multiplayer experiences, and the power of uncertainty, the future of this genre looks bright and terrifying.
The Evolving Tastes of Gamers and the Horror Genre
As technology continues to advance, so too does the world of gaming. The rise of virtual reality and increased processing power means that games can now offer a level of immersion that was previously unimaginable. This has led to a surge in popularity for mystery horror games, which are able to create a truly terrifying experience for players.
One reason for this is the evolving tastes of gamers. In the past, horror games were often criticized for being too gory or graphic, and many developers shied away from this genre as a result. However, as gamers have become more accustomed to graphic violence and mature themes, they have also begun to appreciate the psychological terror that can be found in mystery horror games.
Another factor is the changing nature of the horror genre itself. In recent years, there has been a shift away from traditional slasher movies and towards more cerebral, psychological horror. This has led to a surge in popularity for mystery horror games, which often involve complex puzzles and plot twists that keep players guessing until the very end.
As the horror genre continues to evolve, it is likely that mystery horror games will become even more popular. With the ability to create truly immersive experiences, these games have the power to frighten us in ways that traditional media cannot. Whether you are a fan of classic horror or prefer a more cerebral approach, there is sure to be a mystery horror game out there that will keep you up at night.
The Influence of Real-World Events and Social Issues
The impact of real-world events and social issues on mystery horror games cannot be overstated. As the world around us continues to evolve and change, so too do the themes and settings of these games. With each new tragedy or social upheaval, developers are finding new ways to incorporate these events into their games, creating a sense of urgency and relevance that can be both terrifying and cathartic for players.
One way in which real-world events have influenced mystery horror games is through the incorporation of real-world locations. For example, games like “Silent Hill” and “Resident Evil” have been set in fictionalized versions of real cities, adding a layer of familiarity and unease to the gameplay. This approach not only allows players to explore places they may already know, but also provides a way for them to confront their fears and anxieties in a safe, controlled environment.
Another way in which real-world events have influenced mystery horror games is through the exploration of social issues. Many games in this genre now tackle issues such as racism, sexism, and class inequality, using the supernatural and the unknown to reflect the fears and anxieties of players in the real world. By incorporating these issues into the gameplay, developers are able to create a sense of horror that is both psychological and social, challenging players to confront their own biases and prejudices as well as the darker aspects of society.
Furthermore, mystery horror games are also increasingly being used as a platform for political commentary. With the rise of games like “Among Us” and “Don’t Starve,” which incorporate elements of survival and social deception, players are now being forced to confront issues such as betrayal, mistrust, and power dynamics in a way that is both visceral and thought-provoking. By using the horror genre to explore these themes, developers are able to create a sense of urgency and immediacy that can be both terrifying and enlightening for players.
In conclusion, the influence of real-world events and social issues on mystery horror games is a complex and multifaceted one. Whether through the incorporation of real-world locations, the exploration of social issues, or the use of the genre as a platform for political commentary, these games have the power to both reflect and shape the world around us. As such, they remain an essential and exciting part of the gaming landscape, offering players a unique and terrifying look into the darkness that lies just beyond the edges of our understanding.
The Continuing Appeal of the Mystery Horror Game
The mystery horror game genre has been captivating players for decades, and it continues to thrive in the present day. The reasons for its enduring appeal are multifaceted and complex, but some of the key factors include:
- The thrill of the unknown: Mystery horror games tap into our innate desire to uncover hidden secrets and solve puzzles. By placing players in the role of a detective or investigator, these games allow us to use our analytical skills to piece together clues and unravel the plot.
- The power of storytelling: Effective storytelling is a crucial element of any successful mystery horror game. By creating immersive worlds and crafting compelling narratives, developers can draw players into the game’s universe and make them feel like they are part of the story.
- The challenge of fear: The thrill of facing our fears is a major part of the appeal of mystery horror games. By challenging players to confront their darkest fears and overcome obstacles, these games can be both exhilarating and terrifying.
- The social aspect: Many mystery horror games are designed to be played with friends or strangers, adding a social element to the experience. Whether playing cooperatively or competitively, players can share their experiences and work together to solve puzzles and uncover the truth.
- The impact of technology: The advancement of technology has had a significant impact on the mystery horror game genre. With improved graphics, sound, and interactive elements, modern games are able to create a more immersive and realistic experience for players.
Overall, the appeal of mystery horror games is a result of a combination of these factors, as well as many others. As technology continues to evolve and new stories are told, the genre is likely to continue to captivate players for years to come.
1. Why do horror games scare us?
Answer: Horror games scare us because they tap into our deepest fears and primal instincts. These games often feature elements that are designed to create a sense of dread and uncertainty, such as dark environments, creepy sound effects, and unexpected jump scares. By exploiting our natural fears, horror games are able to create a powerful emotional response that can be both thrilling and terrifying.
2. What makes mystery horror games different from other types of horror games?
Answer: Mystery horror games are unique because they often involve a puzzle or mystery that the player must solve in order to progress through the game. This adds an extra layer of tension and suspense, as the player is not only trying to survive the horrors of the game world, but also trying to uncover the truth behind the mystery. This can make mystery horror games feel more immersive and mentally challenging than other types of horror games.
3. Can horror games have a positive impact on players?
Answer: While horror games can be frightening and stressful for some players, they can also have a positive impact. Many players find that playing horror games can help them develop resilience and coping skills, as they learn to confront and overcome their fears in a controlled environment. Additionally, some players enjoy the sense of accomplishment that comes with successfully completing a challenging horror game.
4. Are horror games bad for your mental health?
Answer: Like any form of media, horror games can have both positive and negative effects on mental health. For some players, horror games can be a fun and harmless way to experience fear and excitement. However, for others, the intense and graphic nature of some horror games can be triggering or traumatizing. It’s important for players to be mindful of their own emotional well-being and to take breaks or avoid horror games if they feel they are having a negative impact.