This is debatable, but it can be argued that the roots of horror games started in the early 90s. Even though video games have been around commercially since the early 70s and in experimental form before that, the giant pixels, chunky characters and primitive musical boops didn’t allow for much spookiness.
Once the graphics could support the proper atmosphere, though, scary games can and did get made…but mostly in Japan. Titles like Sweet Home and the original Clock Tower were Japanese exclusives. Part of the problem was that in the US, games were still viewed as for children…console games, at least. The PC had an older market, and it was able to get away with something like Alone In The Dark without much controversy, all the way back in 1992. To many, AITD was their first introduction to the survival horror genre.
Now that we take scary games for granted, and there are hundreds of them, can Alone In The Dark maintain its effectiveness? Publisher THQ and developer Pieces Interactive are about to find out. They announced a reboot of the original Alone In The Dark today, for all modern systems.
Though the graphics will obviously be better, the storyline and characters will remain the same. You are private investigator Edward Carnby, on assignment to check out a mansion that was once a mental asylum. But this time, you’ll also have the ability to play from a second perspective: Emily Hartwood, the niece of the mansion owner who has gone missing inside. If Ed and Emily aren’t careful, they could join his fate in there.
But will it be SCARY? There’s reason to believe so. Mikael Hedberg, who wrote the plots for Amnesia: The Dark Descent and SOMA, has been hired to cook up some scenarios for this one. We’ll see how the finished product looks when Alone In The Dark launches in the future for Playstation 5, XBox Series X|S and PC.