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IMG's Top 10 Scariest Mac Games
October 31, 2003 | Zack Lipowski

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Welcome to Inside Mac Games' special Halloween feature where we present the top 10 scariest games on the Mac! We racked our brains to come up with this list, and even polled the public for their top 10 list, which is included with choice quotes from forum posters. Rest assured, pop any of these games into your computer, kick your sister out, turn off the lights, and prepare to have the fear of god put in you. Enjoy!

10. Medal of Honor: Allied Assault
No, I was not under the influence of controlled substances when I put MoH in here. Most people associate “horror” with twisted beings and creatures not occurring naturally. This is simply not true. MoH elicits aspects of horror and disbelief from its audience not through gore or concealed aliens, but through using our knowledge of history as a backdrop for the player to experience first hand. We’ve all heard and read the horror that is D-Day, the invasion of Normandy, etc. Thus by using what we know and putting us in that environment, we witness first-hand the horror expertly painted by designers who heavily researched the topic. If you want to experience one of the most truly frightening and eye-opening sequences in any game, I challenge you to play the Normandy level. In one of the most memorable levels in a game to date, you open your eyes and see yourself surrounded by petrified soldiers vomiting and crying out in an enclosed transport vehicle on the water. Axis planes scream overhead unleashing thousands of rounds of high velocity bullets into the flesh of men around you. A voice screams out to move, and you’re thrust onto the beach of Normandy in a hail of gunfire and explosions. All of this is expertly crafted with a solid graphic’s engine and complex physics model. Explosions will rock your screen and shoot dirt up in the air, and the many scripted events throughout the game add level after level of immersion. MoH might not terrify you in the sense you think, but trust me, when you first come face to face with a Panzer tank and have nothing but your useless M1, you will be a believer. A fantastic game that will send shivers down your spine, this is as close as you will get to reliving D-Day.

Public Choice: The Sims (seriously)

Public Quote: "The Sims is scary because it sometimes emulates the worst parts of real life. Otherwise known as reality. Because let's face it, sometimes reality can suck... hard."

9. Quake
The first game in the series released in 1996 may not hold up to it’s bigger brothers of today, but it still offers a worthwhile glimpse into id Software’s early days and the mainstream birth of 3D first person shooters. At the time, this bad boy featured impressive 3D worlds and wicked enemies handled with obscenely smooth animation. Aiming was beefed up, as not only were there more enemies to deal with, but you had to be accurate with your shots and not simply spray and pray. The obscene amounts of pixel blood and gore present all the more justify its inclusion in the list. Walking through dark and muddied corridors, holding onto your shotgun only to suddenly be ambushed by mutated humans decked out in armor and floating skulls is priceless. Back in the day Quake might have set you shivering in your booties, but nowadays the best reason to experience this timeless masterpiece is for the adrenaline rush. Blasting through enemies with an assortment of rockets and shotguns as you scream through levels as fast as possible will more than satisfy the recommended daily heart rate exercise. If not for the shear thrill of mass carnage, do it for your health.

Public Choice: Return to Castle Wolfenstein

Public Quote: "Because, yeah, Nazi zombie's are twice as freaky as vanilla ones."

8. Return to Castle Wolfenstein
In one of the greatest modern-day revivals of a past franchise, RtCW continues the tradition of giving Nazi’s their due. Shamefully, most people skipped the single player in favor of the robust multiplayer. Using a heavily souped-up Quake 3 engine, RtCW delivers the goods visually and never falters in the audio department. The story is heavily influenced by occult items the Nazi’s sought in WWII, which they thought had supernatural powers that would enable them to take over the world. The game is all about stylish action and gore, as one of the game’s first scenes is of a fellow allied soldier being electrocuted by a blood-soaked mad scientist. From here, you’ll battle the status quo Nazi’s, but once you start to dig up the Nazi’s occultist plans, you start to encounter the fruits of their labors. Screaming banshees, floating skulls and mummies all make their appearance, but perhaps the best monsters are reserved for the spectacular boss battles. One such instance has you battling a giant ogre-ish creature wrapped in spikes and overhanging flesh, which summons zombies from the earth all the while trying to crush you into a pulp. Ordinary level design is spruced up with excellent fog effects and moody lighting, and the game’s weapons will satisfy even the most battle-hardened Mac gamer. Torching a group of zombie’s and Nazi’s with your flamethrower is perhaps a pivotal moment in the evolution of the first person shooter. Come for the excellent single player campaign, stay for the well-developed multiplayer.

Public Choice: DOOM II

Public Quote: "Doom II, back when i was younger (hey, just turned 20). Not really scary make-ya-have-nightmares scary, but freak-you-out scary."

7. Unreal
Five years aged, and Unreal still stands the test of time, and many still cite it as being superior to the recently released sequel. Perhaps what Unreal had going for it the most were its graphics engine, which featured stunningly beautiful, vast landscapes populated with living animals. As soon as you escape your crashed prison ship after one of the best beginnings in a game yet, flocks of birds fly over you and small mammilla creatures scurry away from you in fear. It is that very point where the game hooks you, and slowly draws you in with suspense by offering up mutilated bodies and cryptic logs to increase tension and fear. One of the most remembered creature introductions happens as you walk through a lighted corridor, only to suddenly see each set of lights go out one by one until you’re in pitch black, wondering what’s going on, only to hear a high-pitched roar and flashes of red as a monster leaps to tear you apart. Smart, for the time, enemy A.I. and an engaging story leads you on a worthwhile rollercoaster of a ride that will not only give you some roots, but don’t be surprised if your mouse looks like a chew toy once you’re done playing,

Public Choice: Unreal

Public Quote: "Good game, awesome graphics for it's time, but let's be honest, the first time you crawled around you were crapping your pants that something was going to jump out at you any moment!"


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