(This is an article I did for a forum, since a lot of people liked it I'm sharing it with the world, the original article was in spanish so if I misunderstand something it's because english it's not my main language)
Ahhh the infamous Game Over, that screen that every gamer has seen at least once. Every game has a Game Over, from a platformer to a dating sim, and each for different circumstances. But how do we feel when we see that screen? our attitude changes depending the type of game we're playing and I'm gonna review the different Game Overs of videogame genres.
I've seen this... a couple of times
Losing in a plaformer game it's not strange, indeed, sometimes it is a risk you must run to know if you can get X object from Y part of the stage, there are games that take this to the extreme and the sub-genre of trial and error takes form, where losing is just a step further to winning. Games like Limbo, I Wanna Be The Guy, Another World and such... You know what they say, you learn from your mistakes.
The platformers from old were very strict with lives gathering so you don't lose completely and that made the games even harder, but in today's platformers games you can be in world 3 and have 99 lives already, or they directly erase the lives concept (like in Rayman Origins).
You probably ran out of tokens at this point.
If there are games where you lose money in a matter of seconds that would be Arcade games, and thanks to this the developers make the games extremely hard (one less than the other but that depends of the people) and playing games this hard in Arcades makes us lose tokens like water from our body, we all remember them: Metal Slug, Ghosts n' Goblins, Sunset Riders, Contra, and others.
It's so common to lose in these games that it sometimes seems like the grace, but the only thing that matters is that we enjoy it.
Our hero has done a good job.
Losing in a RPG it's a signal... a calling... telling us we are wimps, if we lose it's plain obvious what we must do: train, train and train to the point we can defeat that enemy that sweeped the floor with us and show them who's the boss. Sometimes you lose in a Boss Battle, sometimes in a plain old battle, if it is the latter then you must train hard because if that happens the game will just gonna get harder. Sometimes we just lose against a boss on purpose because, let's say, you found it's elemental weakness, but you don't have enough magic at that point of the battle, so you just lose and re-battle the boss.
It's very common in RPG games that when you lose there's a text saying something like "Our heroes have fallen" or something like that, if not we can see how the thing we were trying to stop is taking over the world (or whatever it was trying to do).
Yes, I know, the zombies eating my corpse made that quite clear.
Let's remember, what is our mission in a Survival Horror? it is what the name implies: SURVIVE the HORRORS, there's no game genre that places us in the characters skin (in the horror inflicting way) like the Survival Horror. We don't want to die, meaning, we don't want that Game Over. Thinking how a zombie or a demon from the netherworld kills us is somenthing that nobody wants to experience (and if you do, I'd recommend the psychologist) and the scenery just makes it worse.
There're too games were we escape from a monster that could be anywhere and anytime where we least expect it and then we just have to run and hide (in games like Haunting Ground and Clock Tower) and just seeing those monsters makes us think we already lost.
Well, there are a lot more of genres but I feel that if I keep going I would be repeating myself, different people experience Game Overs in different ways, so this article is not 100% accurate but it is what I think about it, at least.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article!