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Resident Evil 3 Vs. Resident Evil 4: Separating Survival Horror from Survival Action

Illustration for article titled emResident Evil 3/em Vs. emResident Evil 4/em: Separating Survival Horror from Survival Action

Not all horror video games are created equally. Some focus on creating an atmosphere of isolation and vulnerability. Others rely on shock to frighten the player, while making sure there's enough firepower laying around to shoot horror right in the face. Confused? Perhaps this handy graphic will help.


It's the difference between Resident Evil 3 and Resident Evil 4, or Ridley Scott's Alien and its action-packed sequel, Aliens. For many it's an incredibly subtle distinction, while for other's it's the difference between wet and dry pants. If you're having trouble telling one from another you're a more stalwart person than I, and you could probably benefit from this handy chart that's making the Reddit rounds.

[via Reddit]

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Ive been trying explain this difference to younger gamers for years now. I think it all went downhill with RE4 and Bioshock. So many people I know considered Bioshock a great HORROR game. The thought of Bioshock as a horror game never crossed my mind while playing it.

I grew up in the heyday of horror gaming, I conquered every Silent Hill, Resident Evil and Clock Tower game from day one release and Amnesia was a god send.

Seems that the younger generation thinks that any game with a lot of darkness and monsters making noise qualifies as horrific.

Now thats not to say that the new Action Horror games are bad, I enjoy them just as much as the next gamer, but it most certainly is not Survival anymore. A tense atmosphere does not equal horror, if thats the case then Demon Souls was the scariest game Ive ever played, very tense, but not horror.

The only thing I would disagree with on that list is Condemned.. I found that game to be very scary and had a lot of old school Survival Horror techniques. But everything else is dead on.

Gamers need to toughen up a bit and developers need to stop holding our hands, take gaming back to a challenge. Take away our ammo and room by room checkpoints, stop with the regenerating health (and freaking Vita Chambers, worse idea ever) and make us fear whats in the next corridor (damn dogs through windows).

Sorry for the rant, but I been wanting to say this for a while now and this is the perfect topic :)

Enjoy what ever your game your playing, Im going to jump back on my PS2 and my copy of Haunting Ground.