Archive for the ‘Horror’ Category

DiGRA 2009

June 3, 2009

DiGRA 2009 – full papers due this month. More information is here

May was Zombie Awareness Month. Apologies for the late notice to those caught unawares. More information on Zombie related preparedness can be found here at the Zombie Research Society

Then again…

November 26, 2008

Zombie LARP – where, perhaps, you can negotiate the degree of mobility enjoyed by the undead…

The controversy continues

November 25, 2008

Here is zombie purist Earnest Cavalli lamenting the ‘Hyperactive Undead’: Quote: 

“Left 4 Dead […] disappointed my inner zombiephile: Despite the positive reviews, it feels like a Half-Life mod, not the virtual undead rebellion I was hoping for. Key to the game’s offenses are the zombies themselves. I applaud Valve’s effort to offer players a chance to play as The Other, but dammit, zombies do not run.” 

More zombies

November 19, 2008

Left 4 Dead – a zombie game with “a cinematic vibe”, it says here.

Zombie lore

November 4, 2008

Link to article in which Simon Pegg defends the classic zombie shuffle. The “fast zombie is bereft of poetic subtlety. As monsters from the id, zombies win out over vampires and werewolves when it comes to the title of Most Potent Metaphorical Monster. Where their pointy-toothed cousins are all about sex and bestial savagery, the zombie trumps all by personifying our deepest fear: death. Zombies are our destiny writ large. Slow and steady in their approach, weak, clumsy, often absurd, the zombie relentlessly closes in, unstoppable, intractable.”

Horror games conference

October 29, 2008

The research group Ludiciné from the University of Montreal, in collaboration with the Research Group on the Creation and Formation of Cinematographic and Theatrical Institutions (GRAFICS) from the University of Montreal and the NT2 Laboratory on Hypermedia Art and Literature from the University of Quebec in Montreal, solicits your proposals for the bilingual (French/English) international conference titled «Thinking after Dark: Welcome to the World of Horror Video Games». This conference will be held in Montréal from April 23 to 25, 2009.

Call for papers

As fear is the oldest and strongest emotion of mankind (Lovecraft), human beings have always taken a malicious pleasure in frightening themselves. If literature and cinema were and still represent good means
for the expression of horror, nowadays, the experience of fear is as intense in video games.

While academia has been studying horrific literature and films for a few decades, such an interest for the videoludic side of horror has not, until now, showed up. Yet, since the cinematic staging of fear in Alone
in the Dark in 1992, the Survival Horror has become a prolific genre offering a wide selection of significant games such as the Resident Evil, Silent Hill and Fatal Frame series. Because it is at the crossroads of diverse cultural heritages and the latest technological developments, and because it exhibits the ins and outs of the matrix that governs all but a few games (spatial navigation and survival), horror video games require a deeper study.

This international conference wishes to study horror video games (not necessarily labeled survival horror) from an eclectic range of critical and theoretical perspectives. It aims to fill a gap in game studies
between general theory and analysis of particular genres and games.

Possible Topics
Here are some examples of relevant themes we wish to explore in this conference:

Historical approach
– Origins and history of horror video games
– Impact of the technological evolution on horror video games

Theoretical approach
– Simulation of horror, fear, terror
– Narratives and themes of horror video games

Transmedial approach
– Transmedial study of horror video games (Games/Films/Literature)
– Remediation in films, literature and video games

Socio-cultural approach
– Transnational analysis of horror video games (United States/Japan)
– Social and cultural meanings of horror video games
– Horror video games and censorship

Analytical approach
– Aesthetics of horror video games (lighting, sound, editing, 1st/3rd person perspective)
– Study of specific games or series (Alone in the Dark, Resident Evil, Fatal Frame, etc.)

The organizing committee remains open to proposals that respect the general spirit of this call for papers.

Please submit your proposals no later than January 15, 2009 at the following e-mail address: <>. Acceptance and rejection notifications will be sent by the beginning of February.

Your proposal must include:

1. The title of your paper and an abstract (no more that 500 words).
2. Your academic status, your institutional affiliation, your department and your contact information (mailing address, telephone number, fax number and e-mail address)
3. A short biography underlining your work related to the themes of the
conference (no more than 250 words).

A selection of papers will be published in a special issue of Loading…,the journal of the Canadian Game Study Association.

For further information, please visit our website:

Gaming After Dark

June 26, 2007

(edited collection)

Submissions are invited for a book-length collection of essays relating
to horror video games.

The horror genre was and is still popular nowadays. As fear is the
oldest and strongest emotion of mankind (Lovecraft), human beings have
always experienced a malicious pleasure in frightening themselves. As
literature and cinema are good means of expression for horror, the
«bounded experience of fear» has never been as intense as it currently
is in the video game.

While there are many books (and recent ones) devoted to the horror film,
none has so far analysed the videoludic side of horror. Yet, since the
cinematic staging of fear in Alone in the Dark in 1992, the Survival
Horror has become a prolific genre. Because it is marked by classics
(Resident Evil and Silent Hill), has always been in constant evolution
due to technological progress that allows to create better immersive
horror world and to refine its gameplay, and exhibits the ins and outs
of the matrix of a whole bunch of video games (to survive an adventure
maze), the genre is a suited to study.

This collection wishes to study horror video games (not necessary
labelled survival horror) from a wide range of critical and theoretical
perspectives. It wishes to fill a gap in game studies between general
theory and analysis of particular genres and games. Topics may include,
but are not limited to the following:
• Simulation of Horror, Fear, Terror
• Aesthetics of Horror Video Games (lighting, editing, 1st/3r person
• Design Perspectives on the Genre
• Social and Cultural Meanings of Horror Games
• Origins and History of Horror Video Games
• Narratives and Themes of Horror Video Game
• Transmediatic Analysis of Horror (games/film, Japanese games/American
• Study of Specific Games or Series (Alone in the Dark, Resident Evil,
Fatal Frame, etc.)
• The Future of Horror Video Games (possible censorship caused by the
new the future photo-realism and near-human AI of the new generation of

Please submit title and 500-word abstract of proposed paper along with a
brief scholarly bio by September 1, 2007 to Professor Bernard Perron,
University of Montreal ( Maximum length for
final essays (including notes) will be between 8 000 and 10 000 words.

Bernard Perron
Professeur agrégé
Université de Montréal
Département d’histoire de l’art et d’études cinématographiques
C.P. 6128 Succ. Centre-ville
Montréal (Québec)
Téléphone : (514) 343-7384
Télécopieur : (514) 343-2393
Courriel : ou
Site web :