Today is Independence Day, and I found the holiday weekend to be a perfect time to start in on my July game challenge. For those of you who don’t know, July is survival horror month. If this sounds familiar, it turns out, it is. I was recently reminded that last July I also made it survival horror month.
I am nothing if not consistent.
I think the reason I’m drawn to horror games in July has a lot to do with my annual horror movie playlist for July. I know that when the Fourth rolls around each year, I have to watch I Know What You Did Last Summer and then immediately follow it with I Still Know What You Did Last Summer. Then, of course, comes Jaws and all the sequels.
All those films put me in the mood to catch up on my backlog of horror games.
This year’s list looks an awful lot like last years (I wasn’t terribly successful with that challenge, but I aim to be for this one), and the potential games to play are as follows:
Among the Sleep
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Chaos Bleeds
Condemned: Criminal Origins
Condemned 2: Bloodshot
The Evil Within
Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butterfly
Fatal Frame III: The Tormented
Layers of Fear
Murdered Soul Suspect
Obscure: The Aftermath
Resident Evil: Revelations
Shadows of the Damned
Silent Hill 2
Silent Hill 3
Silent Hill 4: The Room
Silent Hill: Downpour
Silent Hill: Homecoming
Silent Hill: Origins
Silent Hill: Shattered Memories
Siren: Blood Curse
State of Decay
The Vanishing of Ethan Carter
The Walking Dead: Season 2
I know that’s a lot of games, but I’d like to experience as many of them as I can. I’ve already started off the challenge on a positive note: I played through the Resident Evil 7: Biohazard demo twice, and I’m a decent chunk of the way through Oxenfree.
I’d seen the demo played through a couple times in its entirety so I knew what to expect. Even so, that demo is tense. The only thing truly different from both videos I watched was that I never once saw the ghost girl. Apparently she shows up seven times (no one is sure if that is a coincidence or not), but I couldn’t catch sight of her. I did, however, find all the “secret” items like the fuse for the fuse box, the lockpick for the drawer, and the axe and dummy finger. I found the ringing phone in the attic, but I didn’t answer it because I knew what would happen if I did: I’d be clonked over the head by an angry dude. Of course, finding the key and attempting to leave the house also resulted in this, so…not sure if I dodged the bullet or just prolonged the tension. Either way, I think I saw everything I was going to see with the playable trailer.
I just wish I could have caught sight of the ghost girl at least once in the demo.
I also made it about halfway through Oxenfree before I took a breather. I’m not sure what I was expecting, but I’m not into it so far. The dialogue feels like it’s trying incredibly hard, and the times when people talk over each other I find grating. It seems like everyone is at a constant intensity, and it makes my ears cringe.
Personal tastes aside, I’m a bit astonished at the long load times. I can’t imagine that this particular game technically stresses the processing of the PS4, but the load times are sometimes ridiculously long.
I will be glad to finish the game and move on to something else. I imagine Inside will be up next on my list. The more I read and hear about it, the more I want to play it for myself. I also want to experience it before any part of it is spoiled for me.
So with that, I wish you a happy Fourth, and hope you stay safe out there. What have you been playing over the long holiday weekend? What’s on your plate for the month of July?