July Game Challenge: Week One (Oh, The Scares!)

resident evil 7 biohazard

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:

Alan Wake
Among the Sleep
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Chaos Bleeds
Condemned: Criminal Origins
Condemned 2: Bloodshot
The Evil Within
Fatal Frame
Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butterfly
Fatal Frame III: The Tormented
Inside
Knock-Knock
Layers of Fear
Manhunt
Murdered Soul Suspect
Obscure: The Aftermath
Outlast
Oxenfree
Resident Evil: Revelations
Shadows of the Damned
Silent Hill
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
Siren: Blood Curse
Soma
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?

5 replies »

  1. After I played the demo for Resident Evil 7,I preordered the game. It’s cool that Tim Turi is working out. I’ve been Overwatching most of the weekend.

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    • As soon as I saw the trailer for RE7 at E3, I pre-ordered it! I’m excited about the direction the series is going.

      And isn’t that cool that he works for Capcom now? It must be like a dream come true for him.

      Like

  2. Alan Wake and the Walking Dead are my recommendations from the list. I just played Walking Dead and was surprisingly captivated by it. Play the first season first though. I was a huge Buffy fan back in the day, and played the games, but to my mind the games did not do the show justice.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I started Alan Wake last July and never finished it; for shame! And I actually played season one of The Walking Dead back when it came out. I loved it, but no matter how hard I tried to make the “right” choices, I always felt like I’d failed. I’ve been meaning to play season two for quite some time now.

      I’m sure the Buffy games are going to be rough (I have both for the original Xbox, but they are both listed to work with the 360), but I think that could also be fun for odd reasons. I, too loved Buffy.

      What are you playing right now?

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