For the longest time, multiplayer and horror games were two things that should never, under any circumstances, be brought together. That’s no longer true, as it seems like every other horror game has some sort of multiplayer component. Seeing otherwise great games (Condemned 2, Dead Space 2) get multiplayer modes forced upon them so a publisher could check another box on its list of features had some horror fans understandably upset.
The tides began to turn when games like Dead Space 3, Dead Island and Left 4 Dead were able to use the maligned feature in ways that benefited the experience. Now, the idea seems to be pretty widely accepted.
Asymmetrical multiplayer is a term I’ve started to use more often here as a growing number of developers turn to it as a nifty way to add a multiplayer element to their game without sacrificing how terrifying it can be. It basically means each team has different objectives.
When it comes to horror games, the term usually means one player is being pit against a team of players. Evolve, Depth, Damned, The Flock, Last Year and the upcoming Friday the 13th game are all examples of this.
Multiplayer horror is here to stay, but that doesn’t mean you have to be excited about it. I’d understand if you weren’t. That’s why I’d like to ask you this simple question:
How do you feel about multiplayer in horror games?