The home stretch...
The first Fortress of Horror series is winding down to the end. I've watched more horror movies in the last 2 months than I can count. I lucked out this year as most of it was really, really good. I've got one more article in me after this one, and sadly I won't be able to get to any of the requests that I got (though I did watch all of them). There's always next year! I probably averaged five horror movies a week this year, there was no way I could have covered everything I was watching. And as much as I would have loved to get a Alien or the James Whale Frankenstein movies in, what is there left to say at this point?
Halloween is more than horror movies though, so I thought we'd take a look at some of the other cool stuff I celebrated the season with.
Though it may not have come through in my article, I do like the Friday the 13th series for reasons I can't explain, despite them being so, so bad. It just is what it is. Camp Grizzly by Ameritrash Games seems to understand with perfect clarity what makes those movies tick. The cliches are easy enough to depict on cardboard, but this game goes above that and understands the chaotic, visceral nature of the slasher genre and turns that into the mechanics of the game. Your goal is simple. Survive and escape before Otis, a killer in a bear mask, murders all the counselors . Attempting to escape triggers one of 8 possible "finales," which I've found are likely kill off the majority of the remaining campers if not all of them. Some of the finales are really inventive, my favorite involving having to swim away from the killer after you find the boat won't start. I really love how you can see where Otis is but it's never guaranteed that that's where he'll stay. He is a presence on the board, one that strikes terror when he's near, but he's also everywhere. This is definitely an "enjoy the ride" experience though. Much like DungeonQuest, you just go into it not expecting to make it out alive, take what the game gives you and hope for the best. We're hosting a Halloween party this year, non-gamers will be there, and you can bet that this is that game I'll be bringing out.
Year Walk is a little adventure video game that's been out on iOS and PC for awhile now, but developer Simogo has just brought what they call the definitive version of the game to the Wii U. It's an exploration of the old Swedish tradition in which men would fast and then wander into the wilderness in hopes of seeing the future. Atmosphere is the heart of Year Walk, complimented perfectly by its art style and soundtrack. It's a very surreal experience yet the puzzles still manage to have a logic to them. The Wii U gamepad is put to good use here and I can't imagine playing it any other way. You have a small collection of research notes that explains about the year walk tradition as well as elements of Swedish folk lore. It adds an air of authenticity to the game and is put to use in utterly BRILLIANT ways later on in the game. It is short, but I think the game cost me $7 or so and I'll likely come back to it next year. If you own a Wii U and want to immerse yourself in a horror (not terror) experience, shut off the lights and set aside a few hours for Year Walk.
Cap'n Crunch's Halloween Crunch
Alright, before we all harp on me for eating this crap, know that I do work for the country's leading all-natural and organic grocer. At the end of day, I'm a little tired of hearing about fucking quinoa and kale. I do eat pretty good, but I reserve the right to exclusively eat kids stuff when it comes to cereal. And when it comes to Halloween kids cereals, all bets are off.
I'm a huge fan of the General Mills Monster Cereals. Ask anyone who's set foot in the game room here at Look Manor, I've got empty boxes of the stuff lining the walls. Count Chocula, Franken Berry and Boo Berry are guaranteed to show up on the shelves every fall. A couple years ago we got totally spoiled by the return of Fruity Yummy Mummy and Frute Brute, the later of which had never been in production during my lifetime. I'm glad they don't put all five out every year, it wouldn't seem so special when they do, but the fact is that the last couple years have felt lacking.
I picked some this Halloween Crunch up on a whim, and boy am I glad I did. This stuff is about 80% crunch berries. Only the crunch berries are ghost shaped. Ghost shapes that turn milk green. I dig the color palette used on the box, classic Halloween colors. There's a Cap'n Crunch pumpkin pattern on the back of the box that I'm sure won't be used by any kid any where, but who cares, what's in the box is great. It paired perfectly with a few Real Ghostbusters episodes.
Yup, I just wrote three paragraphs about kids cereals.
One more Fortress of Horror to go. What's it going to be? Possibly the ultimate Halloween movie, certainly one of them. I'll give you a hint: It's not the turd that is Trick 'r Treat.