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LONG BLOG

Is There Horror in The Ugly...?

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What makes good TV, films or games? Is it just about fantasy fulfillment, or is there more to it? Do we just look for the perfect or do we also look for the complicated, the difficult, the realistic in our fiction?

In horror, it's often the ugly that draws our attention decay, disease, death; it's the things you see out of the corner of your eye or the nagging little voice at the back of your mind, whispering dark thoughts to you. As a whole the genre is the exploration of this, and the psychology behind it.

But how does that apply to the visual side of what we experience? Does it matter what our characters look like?

Lately I've been thinking a lot about the mechanics of horror; what actually makes a 'thing' scary is an enduring interest of mine, and consequentially I've been thinking a lot about what hasn't scared me about a lot of recent Horror films.



Characters don't necessarily have to be hideously ugly for it to work though, It's more that in reality people are neither super models nor deformed freaks, normal people have attractive and unattractive physical and psychological characteristics and horror works best when it has that realistic edge. If anything what we need more of is imperfections, either slight or hardly obvious one eye a fraction lower than the other, a touch of acme, a scar here or there, just enough for characters to seem normal but not enough to put us off them.

At the moment though it seems like developers are too obsessed with giving us the perfect but just like with good character creation in general, it's not just the good that matters but also the bad.
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About Panzadolphin56one of us since 9:54 AM on 05.06.2011



Oh hey!

I'm former male model and celebrity nutritionist Panzadolphin56. This is my blog. I write things here.

...in case the blog bit didn't give that away.

Anyway! To the left you'll find my latest blogs, and beneath this you'll find a fairly comprehensive list of most of what I've written over the years (unfortunately some stuff does eventually get bumped off the list.)

I like to write from a fairly critical standpoint about games, usually analysis or talking about issues that interest me, I also do retrospectives from time to time, talk about games I've been playing, write the funny things that come into my head, and very occasionally do some crappy art.

I hope you enjoy what you read!

I also do Lets Plays (mostly old horror games) so if that's your thing then click here:

https://www.youtube.com/user/godi3400

Everyone who clicks will not win a million dollars!

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A little about me:

I am mostly a story person, good mechanics are good mechanics but button pressing never does anything for me. I like Horror, I like Cyberpunk, I like Neo-Noir (especially crossed with Cyberpunk), I like good art and good writing, I like games that cut against the grain or choose to challenge social or industry norms in some way.

I don't have a single favourite game but I am a big fan of the MGS games, Snatcher, the Forbidden Siren series, Silent Hill 2, the old-school Resident Evils, Advance Wars and Power Dolls, among many, many others.

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Critical Pieces:

How ugly should Horror really be?
Of Inventories and Horror Games
Crafting A Good Game of 'The Thing'
Alien(s), Creative license and Borrowed Ideas
Crossing from TV/Movie to Games
Scope and Depth in the world of gaming
Boss Battles - When do they ever make sense?
Survival Horror Essentials
Colonial Marines: Well, that kind of sucked...
Disability, Disease in Games
Blood 2 and Post-Modernism
Topics, Tropes and Atmosphere in Horror games
Realism Vs. Fantasy - Who Wins?
The gradual drift away from the mainstream
Is There Horror in The Ugly...?
The Fourth Wall and taking games seriously
Are You Always Online?
Hype: Aliens Vs. Predator
To shoot stuff or not to shoot stuff?
Character Design and Choice in Games
Culture Vs. Creativity: Where do Stories come from?
Where you go Isometric-Strategy Games?
What's the Point of Games?
Do Horror games even still exist...?
Why are Characters Always so White...?
Choice in Games: Heavy Rain

A Magical Dolphin Plays:

Claire
Sepulchre
The King of the Wood

Retrospectives:

Resident Evil Remake
Aliens Vs Predator 2
Sweet Home
Forbidden Siren
System Shock 2

Pick up and Plays:

Call of Cthulhu and the Spectre of Good Horror
Story Books and Nightmares in Rule of Rose
B-Movie Bliss: Extermination
Along for the ride with Michigan: Report From Hell
Some thoughts on Wargame: European Escalation
Skyrim: Impressions

Funny/Less Critical Stuff:

Get Yo Summer Game On
Lazyblog: Box Art
Escaping into the Darkness of Hellnight
Diversity what what?!?: Black Mamba Edition
Why Do We Still Have Exploding Barrels...?

Art:

Dead Space 3, in a nut shell.
CROSSOVER: Mario X Siren
Boss: Learning the Tools of the Trade

Front Pages:
Tales from Skyrim: The skinhead shopkeep
Steam ID:Panzadolphin56
Mii code:This is a thing?


 

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