Cliffy B took to his blog to question if it is viable to horror games to still be released at a full $60 after he spent some time playing Dead Space 3. His post comes after many gamers and reviewers have been arguing if Dead Space should have stuck with its roots in horror or go down the action route that as it has with Dead Space 3.
Cliffy B feels that the disc based market for a campaign only is not a viable option anymore. He says:
In the 60$ disc based market horror doesn’t fly – it’s the ultimate “Campaign Rental” that’s played for 2 days and traded in and I’m sure EA knows this. When we’re fully digital we’ll see more true horror games coming back. (Look at Amnesia and Slenderman on PC.)
He makes a very valid point. Most gamers are looking for a game with a ton of “meat” to it and do not want to drop $60 to buy a game that could have been rented and beaten in a weekend. Digital releases are also proving to be a stronger market for horror games with releases such as Siren Blood Curse skipping retail and being released on the PlayStation Store.
Another difficulty that horror games face, according to Cliffy B, is their ability to keep players on the edge of their seat. Once a player has played through a moment full of surprises then there is no replay value as the suspense is gone on subsequent playthroughs.
Horror games are at a point where they need to find their market and begin considering to change things in ways to keep the genre successful and true to itself at the same time. What do you think should horror games abandon disc retail in preference for digital?