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Horror genre: uncomfortably creepy?

Subject: Horror genre: uncomfortably creepy?
by ShelG on 2008/9/29 13:16:51

I like the concept of Whispering Bluff — exploiting personal flaws and fears, strong narrative style, dark depressing horror — and am looking forward to trying it out.

But, it also reminded me of My Worst Gaming Experience Ever (MWGEE).

The game was excellent. The GM immersed us in a vivid, well-planned world with Cthuhluian atmosphere. He started it off with a bang, mangling us in a car-crash and then escalating the tension by trapping us in a high-intrigue scenario worthy of Homeland Security. He also put a lot of research into the story and I actually learned a lot about Seattle history and the local art scene by playing the game. It was engaging and intense.

So, what made this MWGEE?

We didn't get to create characters. We had to play ourselves with our own weeny strengths and fat character flaws. The GM was taking a psychology class at the time and even made us all take a personality test prior to the game — the better to exploit our fears.

In one particularly memorable scene, as mood-setting, before the big bad attacked, my own zombified dog, an old Sheltie named Julie, appeared and stalked us, shuffling through the woods. Unfortunately, reality and fantasy intersected a little too closely when Julie really died during the course of the game. The GM never resurrected her as an NPC after that, but I lost my enjoyment of the game. It had crossed a line, and the fun went out of the fantasy. It had become too uncomfortably creepy.

So, Whispering Bluff, we get to make-up characters, right?
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