Mark B Hm. Well, Namco finally announced a sequel to Splatterhouse, Capcom announced Dead Rising 2 is not only coming but will have online multiplayer (THANK GOD), Resident Evil 5 is as guaranteed as the sun rising and setting, Parasite Eve 3 is on its way, and I’m beginning to wish they’d STOP making Silent Hill games, so I’m not really sure what to suggest here. Eternal Darkness? Possibly. Dino Crisis? Possibly. A sequel to Umbrella Chronicles? Certainly a possibility. Another Stubbs the Zombie? Worth a shot.
However, since Alex took out the category I wanted to discuss this game in, I’m going to nominate Pathways Into Darkness, partly because I loved the game and partly because it amuses me that everyone reading this is going “huh?”Â and scratching their heads in confusion.
Pathways Into Darkness is a game most of you have never heard of that was developed by a company all of you have heard of: Bungie. Back in the 90’s, long before Bungie became the developers of Halo, they were developing games exclusively for the Macintosh platform, the most notable of which is the Marathon trilogy, which is itself a fantastic series of games. Pathways Into Darkness came about a year before the Marathon franchise, and was a surprisingly bizarre FPS (yes, it was indeed an FPS) that essentially WAS a horror game, despite not seeming like one at first.
The gist was simple: there’s a pyramid out in the middle of the jungle, underneath of which a god lays sleeping (what god in specific is not really explained, but you can probably just pick a name from Lovecraftian mythos and run with it). He’s going to wake up in a few days, and when he does, you’re all dead. The only way to keep him from waking up is to plant a nuclear device by him that will go off and bury him under a ton of crap, thus keeping him asleep, presumably forever. So, you go off to the pyramid to do this thing, only to realize that you have no friends, not nearly enough supplies, and no idea where you’re going. Oh, yes, and the pyramid is infested with monsters, which are essentially dream sentinels created by the sleeping god, specifically meant to repel dipshits like you from messing with said god. Oh, and did I mention you die in about five hits?
Now, all of this sounds like Doom if the game hated you, but despite the “killing monsters in a hellhole”Â concept and FPS gameplay, the games couldn’t be more different. Pathways Into Darkness, among other things, featured an environment that was free-form, meaning you could go back and forth from floor to floor in the pyramid as you wished, meaning that the game wasn’t just about getting to where you needed to go, it was about figuring out how to get there. There were roleplaying elements to the game as well, as your character could become stronger, sleep to replenish health, and have conversations with the (dead) people who came before you, by way of using magical crystals. There are a lot of people, too, ranging from your own allies to Nazi’s who were trying to use the god as a weapon and beyond. The monsters in game were also quite… interesting, though one of the most bizarre, the Headless (an orange monster, consisting of legs, a torso, a tongue, and teeth) is one of the earliest monsters you face, and the game only gets more horrifying from there, relatively speaking.
Bottom line: if Bungie could make a modern update of this game (especially since playing it at this point is nigh impossible), I would stand in line outside to buy it, and I think they owe it to us after Oni. Just saying.
Misha: ETERNAL DARKNESS!!!!
We wants it, precioussssss…. They promised it… Tricksy, nasty little programmers!!
Seriously, the magic that Silicon Knights worked into that game needs to be reborn. And I’m not just talking about the insantiy effects – I’m talking about the multi-threaded narrative, the subtle references (Jefferson Coombs Asylum, anyone?), the extra layers of endings that you had to play through the game three times to see… There was so much potential there.
Even if they don’t make it a direct follow-on, there’s so much they could do… It would be a crying shame to see the immense potential here go to waste.
Michael O’Reilly: Dino Crisis 2 was a fantastic game, I would love to see a sequel to it. Action, pacing, kinda interesting story. Yes a sequel to that game would do nicely. No I mean a real sequel to it, not whatever that was that I never played on the Xbox.