RedgoateeRob`s Top Ten Lost Horror Games: Part 2

We left off our discussion of the best lost horror games we never got to play with Metroid: Dread, the lost Metroid title. What more could there possibly be to say after discussing a lost Metroid game? Read on and find out, because we jump into #5 right now…

5. Dead Space Prototype (XBox)

Everyone has played Dead Space, EA`s 2008 ‘Event Horizon-meets-Alone In The Dark’ survival horror shooter. What few know, however, is that the game actually started as a much smaller survival horror game exclusive to Microsoft`s original XBox console. Not much is known about this version; what footage exists and has leaked online is very limited and looks to have been shot from a projector with a cell phone camera. Nevertheless, the footage gives a glimpse of a more low-key and moody game, slower paced, with much more lo-fi visuals than the final game released to retail. The lower end visuals perhaps might have made for a more frightening experience, something akin to the difference between watching an old horror film on VHS instead of an updated modern blu-ray.

4. Call Of Cthulhu: Destiny`s End (PC)

Call Of Cthulhu: Dark Corners Of The Earth can safely be called one of the most frightening games ever made. Set in H.P. Lovecraft`s supremely disturbing seaside town of Innsmouth, players were beset with indescribable monstrosities and hopeless situations befitting a playstyle more centered on running away in fear than attempting to stand one`s ground against the game`s nameless horrors. The game`s sequel apparently planned to lay on the horrors even thicker, but the closure of developer Headfirst Productions in 2006 meant that we will never know what dank ichorous terrors might have awaited us in the second part. Perhaps that may be for the best; the author of this post has heard it said that some gamers were unable to even finish Dark Corners, citing the original`s intensity. Somewhere, Lovecraft himself must be smiling.

3. Castlevania: The Bloodletting (32X) and Castlevania: Resurrection (Dreamcast)

The Castlevania series needs no introduction. From the NES and Genesis to the PS3 and XBox 360, Castlevania has stood the test of time. However, gamers have missed out on a few Castlevania titles over the years- both the Sega 32X and the Sega Dreamcast were scheduled to recieve Castlevania titles that never materialized. Almost nothing is known about the 32X version, which would have been titled Castlevania: The Bloodletting, save that one of the playable characters would have been Richter Belmont. More information is available regarding the Dreamcast iteration; the game would have starred Sonia Belmont as well as a new male Belmont vampire hunter, and the antagonist of the game would have been a female vampire attempting to resurrect Count Dracula. The presence of Sonia Belmont might lead one to speculate that the game could perhaps have clarified a plot point that fans of the series have been wondering at for years; namely her exact relationship to Adrien Farenheit Tepes, or as fans know him, Alucard.

2. Hellraiser (NES)

The NES is no stranger to horror games. Games based on the well-known properties Bram Stoker`s Dracula, A Nightmare On Elm Street, and Friday the 13`th all appeared on the platform. What is less known is that in 1990, developer Color Dreams was working on a game for the NES based on Clive Barker`s terrifying Hellraiser film. The game itself would have been completely unlicensed by Nintendo (and therefore not subject to Nintendo`s seal of approval), would have been played in first-person, and would have involved puzzle-oriented gameplay befitting the Hellraiser license- to be more precise, players would have been asked to solve the Lament Configuration itself. To facilitate this, the game would have shipped with an additional processor on the chip, making it a 16-bit title. Consider that a moment, allow it to settle into your consciousness. A 16-bit Hellraiser game. On the NES.

It was, of course, too awesome to have ever come to pass. The presence of the additional processor on the chip would have driven the price of the cartridge up astronomically; most estimates online state that the game would have cost more than $100 at retail. Color Dreams apparently didn`t like the thought of how that price point would go down with soccer moms across the country and instead went for a more lucrative option- making bible games through another label, Wisdom Tree. Nothing of Hellraiser NES seems to remain for gamers to uncover; mock-ups of the box art and a purported picture of the game`s title screen exist online, but no ROM, no image of the cart, and no gameplay screenshots have been found to date.

1. …What could be more horrific, more spine-tingling, than the above? What lost game have horror gamers spent more time digging for, researching, begging for more information about, than games as outright cool as the titles we have already examined? Check back because the answer is coming very soon.

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~ by Redgoateerob on December 12, 2011.

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