Operation Backlog Completion 2024
Oct 192022
 

Instead of talking about a single game today, I want to take a look at five short ones.

And by short, I mean short.

Each game on this list can be finished in 15 minutes or less.

So let’s take a look at five bite-sized spooky games you can play in between longer titles!

Grime House

The sole traditional survival horror game on this list is Grime House, a horror game that appears to have been designed in Paint.

You have a top-down view and walk over items to use or interact with them, and you find a gun that lets you engage enemies in simple combat. Although the house you’re trapped in is small, it makes the most of its few environments to set up a classic survival horror gameplay loop of exploring and backtracking to gradually unlock more rooms.

The movement controls occasionally gave me trouble, but overall I had a lot of fun with this one.

10mg: Sealed Estate

Apparently there’s a whole collection of games out there called 10mg, or 10 minute games. One of these titles is a horror game called Sealed Estate. You become trapped inside a mysterious estate, being hunted by an unknown monster, and must find a way out.

The controls are very simple. You can walk and sometimes click things, and you eventually get a flashlight.

It feels more like a puzzle game than anything else, as you need to use your flashlight to get past obstacles (mainly creepy eyes), while scattered notes tell the story. Near the end, the mouse controls stopped working properly for me, which made it frustrating, but overall it was a decent atmospheric experience.

Prison of the Magi: Chapter 0

The next game I played was Prison of the Magi: Chapter 0. This one is a first-person adventure game with cosmic horror themes.

It makes good use of lighting, with a very pretty (although grayscale) visual style. There isn’t much to do in this chapter, though. You collect items, but I couldn’t find any way to do anything with them. Maybe they’re intended to be used in the full game.

Unfortunately, a good portion takes place in a maze. It was annoying, particularly since I managed to reset my progress a couple of times. I’m not sure how the save system works, since it seemed to me hitting the save button never showed any effect, but sometimes it saved and sometimes it didn’t.

According to the demo page for the full game, Prison of the Magi will be an open world horror game, so I don’t think this is one I’ll play.

Vampire Night Shift

On the lighter side of spookiness is Vampire Night Shift, a short game about a vampire working at a convenience store.

It’s designed to look like a Game Boy game, and you can even download a copy to play on a Game Boy emulator.

You walk around, talk to people, and complete simple tasks during your shift, like stocking shelves or helping customers. It’s a cute game. That’s the main appeal here. It’s just cute.

There Are Ghosts In These Stalls

Finally, I checked out a horror game shorter than any other on this list: There Are Ghosts In These Stalls, written for a two-minute horror game jam.

It took me slightly longer, closer to five minutes, but this is a tiny one nevertheless. You are in a haunted bathroom, and your goal is to focus on symbols in order to mark them on the inside of the stall.

Despite its extremely short length and simple premise, it has an unsettling atmosphere that made its ending so much more effective. It’s only a few minutes long, but it got me good in the end.

Conclusion

So if you’re looking for something shorter to play this Halloween season, these are a few you might want to keep in mind. I especially recommend Grime House and There Are Ghosts In These Stalls.

Meanwhile, we do not have Ace Attorney news to take an emergency break for (much to my disappointment), but we should end today with actual legitimate Silent Hill news thanks to a Silent Hill broadcast tonight. I am filled with fear.

And don’t forget that you can win a prize at the end of October just by leaving comments all month long, as explained in the Celebrating All Things Spooky contest rules here!

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  10 Responses to “Celebrating All Things Spooky: 5 Spooky Games You Can Beat in 15 Minutes or Less”

  1. The older I get, the more appreciation I have for short games. Give me a fun experience to percolate in for a little bit, and then move on to the next. I need less 100+ hours games and more shorter ones I can finish in an afternoon or a weekend, especially if they make good use of your time.

  2. It is the perfect month to be filled with fear, The SH news leaves me afraid also.

    • The SH news has me cautiously optimistic now.

      • I just watched the trailers.

        Silent Hill F – Looks by far the best, but I think it would be more enjoyable to go into if you forget the Silent Hill label and see it as its own beast. It looks more like Fatal Frame since it’s based in Japan.

        SH2 – Not feeling it. The lack of emotion James has in the original makes it easier to put yourself in his shoes, but this new James seems a lot more animated. It was funny how James used to act and sound. It added a kind of goofiness to the game that made it more fun, but the more serious parts were so well directed that it’s still very emotional and disturbing just as quickly. Just from the short trailer you can see it has lost so much.

        Silent Hill: Ascension – Meh.

        Silent Hill: Townfall – You don’t get a whole lot from that trailer, but it kept me interested. I’m cautiously optimistic for this one for no real reason. Looking forwards to seeing more from it so there’s more to form an opinion with.

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