“Horror Done Right: Horror as a Pejorative” by Karl Parakenings

On Lone Survivor:

…it’s easy to list elements of a game in a snarky way, particularly when it’s vivisected with an eye to its construction. If nothing else, Lone Survivor absolutely has its heart in the right place. If effort and passion alone made masterpieces, then Byrne would be rolling in fans and money. Even when the game’s influences shift from Akira Yamaoka to David Lynch, the whole exercise comes across more as rote repetition than genuinely unsettling gameplay and it’s hard to understand why since Byrne clearly knows so much about the genre.

I didn’t know what pejorative meant until two seconds ago, but I agree that Lone Survivor is kind of a letdown.

I found the first 10 minutes of gameplay to be frightening, but then after Lone Survivor’s newness wore off I stopped wondering if I should be scared of monsters and this new world and started wondering about other things, like if I was supposed to mix something together, and where am I supposed to get gas for my kitchen. I wondered if they took the lo-fi look to far because I couldn’t read this screen in full screen mode.

Now I’m stuck on a new floor with little health and little ammo with no idea what to do next. That’s not scary. That’s obnoxious. I’d rather move on than start over.