Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Video Game Horror: Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem

At a time when the Nintendo GameCube's reputation for being a "kiddie" system was accumulating title after title, Silicon Knights threw Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem on the fire and boiled it until blood came oozing out. I still remember turning off all the lights at night when I first started playing this game.

At the time, if you were looking for something that wasn't "kiddie," Eternal Darkness had your number. Not only did it had plenty of the red stuff, but the game's horror was quite the unique brand. Taking advantage of people not facing enemies, the insanity meter punished those who could not vanquish their foes. For any enemies that the player failed to take down, your insanity meter would rise, and weird, random shit would start happening to you. You'd suddenly hear moans coming from the distance, or you'll see walls dripping with blood. And if you pump that meter to the max, you might as well check yourself into a mental institute because that's when all the shit flies off the handle - your own body parts will fall off, rooms will be flipped upside down, or (one of the most sinister illusions) your GameCube won't recognize your controller as you helplessly watch your character get maliciously killed by monsters.

And with the gameplay traversing through multiple characters across different time periods,the story in Eternal Darkness is one for the books. It is the most common story of good versus evil, but chronicling its battles through the ages. Which means you (while you're still playing the game) don't know whether your character will live or die by the end of the level. This leaves you detached from the character and more focused on the story overall, which is often overlooked in most games these days. In fact, you don't get the entire story unless you complete the game 3 times - which I've done.

If you haven't played this game yet, Eternal Darkness will give you a decent scare and give you a good story to go along with your pissed pants.
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