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6 Horror Sequels That Got it Right

Unlike movies, where there’s a good chance a sequel won’t live up to its predecessor, video game sequels have a greater chance of not disappointing fans. Better technology, bigger budgets and less work — because the engine, game world and mechanics are already there — can be enough for a studio to churn out a solid sequel, and that’s enough for some people.

There are so many decent and just okay sequels out there that it makes that moment when you realize you’re playing a great one even more special because it built on the foundation of its predecessor in ways you never expected it to.

That’s exactly what these games did, so without further adieu, let’s take a look at 5 Horror Game Sequels That Got it Right!

Dead Space 2

BestSequels_DeadSpace2

The first Dead Space was brimming with innovative ideas, like its unique take on combat, or strategic dismemberment, and its HUD, which developer Visceral Games made considerably less intrusive and “video gamey” by realistically weaving the interface into the game world. It was a clever idea, and one that’s been used as inspiration by a myriad other developers since.

Dead Space 2 took everything that was special about the original and tweaked it. The controls were less tank-like, the scope was more ambitious, the Necromorphs more horrific, and the Sprawl managed the impressive feat of being more memorable than the USG Ishimura.

Or at least it was until you’re forced to return to the Ishimura.

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64 Comments
  • Nathan Bradley

    I still prefer Resident Evil 3: Nemesis and Resident Evil: Code Veronica as my favourite horror sequel

  • elsewhere

    Gotta go with Resident Evil 2. One of the first games I ever played on the Playstation. It blew my mind. And I know I’m probably in the minority, but I thought the first Dead Rising was great.

    • Chance LeBoeuf

      I think a lot of people had fun with the first Dead Rising dude.

  • Porty Guil

    i thought to myself “i never saw any of those,” before realizing they’re video game lol

  • Chance LeBoeuf

    The quirky and cartoony nature of Dead Rising was part of the appeal for that series. Sucking all the color out of it and making it look like nearly every other zombie game was the problem. How is that getting a sequel right?

    • TH3J4CK4L

      Pretty much.I think that’s why the the 3rd game was a mild success. I personally think Keiji Inafune nailed it and then Capcom wanting a franchise like CoD basically flushed the series like they’ve done consistently since they blasted Clock Tower,Dino Crisis and RE out the airlock.

  • Taboo

    I’m currently playing RE2 for the gazillianth time and I agree, a very good sequel. I love the extra scenarios you unlock after beating the game. In Dead Space 2 The perfect blend of action and horror has been successfully achieved. I had tons of fun with Dead Rising 2 and I’m still looking forward to trying part 3 soon.

  • David Angle

    No to Dead Rising 3. How about change that crappy entry to SILENT HILL 2?!?!?!? You know one of the greatest sequels of ALL time? Heck even Silent Hill 3 is better than DR3.

    • Chance LeBoeuf

      What’s wrong with Silent Hill 3? I thought that was the last good Silent Hill. It was all downhill from there. Silent Hills sounds and looks promising though.

      • TH3J4CK4L

        I didn’t really like SH 3 it’s a bit weaker because it retreads similar ideas to 1. making it the only sequel in the series that confirms an ending in story . It did have one good aspect about it. It showed what Toluca lake Amusement Park looked like. If anything 4 brought up even more information than 3 did. It established the Wish House orphanage and delved into the serial killer briefly mentioned in 2. Walter Sullivan and the 21 sacrements. Silent Hills might be ok,but I haven’t seen anything about it that even makes it Silent Hill.Fingers crossed anyway because it can’t be worse than Downpour and Homecoming πŸ™‚

    • Because Silent Hill 2 is already on the list.

    • Silent Hill 2 is on the list.

      Reading must be hard.

  • Brodequin

    Hard to choose only one, there are many great sequels. My personal all time favorite sequel is Forbidden Siren 2, if i have to choose one from list above, it will be Fatal Frame 2:Crimson Butterfly (Xbox Director’s Cut)

  • EmPleH

    I feel that Bioshock Infinite should be an honorable mention. While it is better than the first Bioshock or not, I feel its at least a worthy sequel.

    • Brodequin

      It’s about horror sequels…

    • While BioShock is a good series with some suspenseful undertones, it’s not a horror game as such.

      Why would it belong on a list with horror right in the subject?

    • SpaceManSpliffz .

      would you kindly ask the author if they would kindly add this beautiful franchise to the article?

  • Cheshire TrollCat

    Dead Space 2 is my favorite game of all time. The atmosphere, gore, setting, characters, and a cool shout-out-to-the-first-game level just mix so well.

  • Harley Mitchel Dirk

    I only played RE 2 briefly when I was really young but I never got very far. The other games on the list I haven’t played(yet), so I can’t really vote for any of them. Doom 3 and AvP 2 are games I’ve had plenty of fun with but they are both action games with horror elements.

  • Phendranah

    Resident Evil 2 is the first horror game I ever encountered so it has serious nostalgic value to me.. But Silent Hill 2 is just incredible! So SH2 gets my vote! Awesome list though! I’m sad I can only pick one haha

  • ThunderDragoon

    I feel like I’m the only person to prefer both RE2 and Fatal Frame II over Silent Hill 2.

    • Brodequin

      I don’t like whole RE series (my wife loves it hehe), but i absolutely preffer FF2 over SH2

    • TH3J4CK4L

      It’s because in terms of storytelling and music SH2 is superior than its predecessor. If you take the leap from 1 to 2 you’ll see why. You want a good watch . Track down a copy of the film “Sweet Home(1989)” since it inspired the first RE game and similarities between the film can be drawn to Fatal Frame.It has some top notch effects by Dick Smith πŸ™‚

  • Frank

    I prefer, “the suffering:ties that bind”, badass game, scary too.

    • Brodequin

      Great game, man!

  • James Johnson

    While Dead Space 2 was really good, I still think the first one was better.

    • Brodequin

      Same here…

    • The first was more tense and scarier than the second. The second game was pussyfied.

      So while DS2 had better graphics and locales, the atmosphere of the first game wasn’t there. For me, that made the second one a lesser game.

  • richp_91

    I voted for RE2, but Dino Crisis 2 should have been on here too!

    • Tyler Hassett

      Dino Crisis 2 was awful man. I mean it wasn’t even survival horror. It’s main focus was just like Mercenaries on the RE series. Though it was pretty fun at times, it got so repetitive that I had to quit and come back quite a lot. I did like the new dinosaurs and such but the time traveling story arch and the setting were just horrible and pretty far out there compared to the first one’s story.

  • Chandler Of-Adelaide

    I assume Dead Rising 3 being on the list is a joke just like the game itself was…that’s the only explanation.

    • Brodequin

      Whole series is a joke πŸ™‚

  • LordAlaster

    Condemned should have been mentioned!

  • Hell-Scorpion

    Resident Evil 3. Nuff said.

    • Jasmine Martinez

      The worst sequel after RE6. Gives nothing to the story and Nemesis just gets annoying after a while.

      • Hell-Scorpion

        No that would be either 4 or 5. Resident Evil 3 resolves how Raccoon City wasn’t the beginning of a global outbreak & added more depth into Umbrella’s power & immorality.

        • Tyler Hassett

          Exactly bro, and Nemesis struck fear into the hearts of grown ass men! lLus the return of Jill, the parallel storyline to RE2 was a great concept, and it had (arguably) the best variety of enemies in the series.

      • Tyler Hassett

        You’re crazy dude! Nemesis was the ultimate Tyrant, like a roided up (and rotting) Mr.X. He was scary as hell bro! The story does great things. It shows what happened to Brad (since I was left wondering after seeing his zombie form in RE2) and Barry as well. It explains (and not just shows, like RE2 did) how Raccoon City was destroyed, and gave us more of an idea of how far Umbrella can and will go to take advantage of their mistakes and turn them into the ultimate opportunity for weapons testing all while covering up their tracks via mercenaries, special agents, and other weapons!

    • Tyler Hassett

      I agree brotha! I’d actually put RE2 and 3 on the same level though. I look at them as two sides of the same coin since (together) they have 3 storylines all taking place at the same time in the same locations, though the RE2 characters never encounter the RE3 characters which probably would’ve been a little more realistic; like maybe have Carlos and his crew keeping tabs on Clair, Leon, and Sherry.

  • Flu-Like Symptoms

    While I dig the FF series more, I gotta give it up for RE2. I actually borrowed a friend’s Playstation after it came out so I could play through it (I was a diehard Nintendo fanboy at the time). Loved the game back then. It was intriguing, fun to play, and legitimately scary.

    • Daniel Anderson

      I got to play it on the N64 (gamecube?) and really enjoyed it. Especially that first level where I kept trying to fight off allt he zombies, burning through my ammo at the beginning, I died of course. Buddy’s turn; runs through them and onto the next spot…DOH!

      • Flu-Like Symptoms

        I believe it was the N64. It took a while, but the console finally got a port of the game a couple years after it came out. I remember being real surprised to learn they managed to pack everything into a cartridge. Great story, btw. I lol’d.

  • texas evil

    Manhunt 2. the uncut edition

    • SpaceManSpliffz .

      Manhunt 2 has foreskin?!!??!??!

  • xdarkxperceptionx

    Diablo 2 is my favourite sequel tbh lol

  • Brodequin

    Btw: System Shock 2 has unofficial sequel! Called System Shock Infinite (so sweet), based on the same location but with complette new story and starts right after the end of the System Shock 2. It’s available on Mod DB:
    http://www.moddb.com/mods/system-shock-infinite

    • TH3J4CK4L

      I checked that out earlier but it didn’t look too great.i know someone was trying to overhaul 1 with the Crytek engine which looked stellar

      • Brodequin

        Still good game for me. Made by fans…

  • Jasmine Martinez

    I’m so sick of people saying that Silent Hill 2 is the best sequel. It’s a good game and yes it has the best character known to man (Pyramid Head), but it’s not the best game in the series. and Yes everyone has different opinions, but I dunno. I just prefer 1 and 3 to 2. Is there anyone else who feels the same way?

    • steve

      Fuck no, you are crazy, Silent Hill 2 IS the series. The story and char concepts, as well as the reason for them are all a Konami masterpiece that has not seen s proper tribute since.

      • TH3J4CK4L

        You’re practically right.the endings in 2 were by far the most haunting and depressing without having to fall back on shock.James Sunderlands character also turned in a chilling performance in his delivery of lines and his sort of disconnected approach to the human elements.all of that building towards the revelation at the end. You couple that with a haunting score by Akira Yamaoka and its a winner(theme of Laura and promise reprise pulling some grim weight of the abysmal black of ones soul. Anyone ever places 3 or 1 before 2 is bound to come off as pretentious as the magazines that tried to boost the credibility of 3 being the height of the SH series.

        • Brodequin

          As i sad: it’s a matter of private opinion and preferences. And that’s why i don’t read game reviews, i follow my own choices πŸ™‚

          • TH3J4CK4L

            Siren was actually a stellar title.only thing hindered them was the audiences not taking to them. I think they fixed a lot of that going into Bloodcurse and no bothered to download it. Siren:Bloodcurse was imo stronger than most of the horror titles released that year.sucks that we might never see a follow up .i like how it handled the multi narratives similar to how Shimizu did Ju-on or Kurosawa did Rashomon

          • Brodequin

            I never played Blood Curse (absence of PS3 hehe), but first two Siren games are my personal best horror games ever!!!
            This challenging series raised the bar for the entire survival horror genre. There is nothing else like it, and if you can learn the rules the game demands you obey, Siren will make you rethink how horror games can take the player to an uncomfortable, terrifying, and ultimately fascinating world where things are never quite what they seem.
            Also Siren are one of the hardest and most nerve-wracking games ever created.
            I LOVE SIREN AND I WANT IT BACK, PLEASE!!!!

          • TH3J4CK4L

            They used a form of mapping for the faces similar to the way L.A Noire tried to use it.You have to imagine that team siren was using way before which makes the team innovative as well as original.that and some of sirens team is made up of a few of the people worked on Silent Hill 1. Sadly Bloodcurse is just a remake of 1 but vastly sought to rectify a lot of the issues with the controls that were in 1 and 2.the game remains faithful to the series.we only had one way to get it and was either buy it off of the psn in a twelve part episodic release or buy a japanese copy overseas called Siren:new translation. It’s no wonder it never found market because of the way it was handled.hell,even the first 2 slid into the market unnoticed but thankfully the open internet has allowed word of mouth keep it alive πŸ™‚

          • Brodequin

            Indeed. Absolutely innovative!
            Actor was surrounded by cameras from eight directions. The photographic data obtained this way was pasted onto a blank 3D model based on the actor’s proportions,creating the character.
            The facial expressions were captured separately from the full-body textures, allowing devs to sample their movements and create a multitude of expressions, such as being twisted with fear, smiling, surprise and laughter….

          • TH3J4CK4L

            The team still has a chance to make another.i remember shortly ago Sony talked to fans who thought that a future title release date was not in fact a siren title.that kind of response from fans sometimes gives companies an idea later on to finance a project even if it’s an exclusive. I think the siren team is loyal to Sony so who knows maybe later we’ll see another but I’m not sure it will connect to Bloodcurse given the storyline can’t really connect.

          • Brodequin

            I dream of it, man…

    • Brodequin

      Me. I prefer 3 over 2… I’m crazy too hehehe…

  • Nikolai Macready

    Left 4 Dead 2. I’m probably gonna get shit, but it nailed everything wrong with the first one, while retaining everything right.

    • TH3J4CK4L

      L4D 2 wasn’t bad but it’s still pretty aimless story wise. I do agree with you in regards to it vastly improving on its predecessors gameplay.fingers crossed that it rectifies that and releases 3 which even further betters it as a whole.also can’t beat the mod community for valve games πŸ™‚

      • Nikolai Macready

        I never felt that it needed that in depth of a story from square one. It was fantastic in its simplicity, that I feel it gets over looked as a good horror game.

        • TH3J4CK4L

          It gets overlooked mostly because most gamers move on frequently from multiplayer titles. I always liken it to word of mouth for valve games or referral by friend titles because it rarely gets seen otherwise in the wasteland off Fps titles.i just hope they expand the locations even more for even greater non linear approach or install some crossroad choices that make you have to split. Sort of like how Portal 2 handled some of the puzzles. I keep hoping for a L4D3.I bought 2 at launch.

          • Nikolai Macready

            Sold Halo 3 for that bitch.

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