10 Best Horror Icon Appearances in Gaming History
Fans of phantasms and monster fanatics rejoice, we’re presenting this list of 10 Best Horror Icon Appearances in Gaming History just for you! Ever since Chris Sarandon (the lead vampire in Fright Night and the detective from the first Child’s Play movie), went on to voice Jack Skellington in The Nightmare Before Christmas and the Kingdom Hearts series, many famous faces from the horror genre have went on to appear in some of our favorite games. These icons of the supernatural prove that they are not only talented when it comes to terrifying us on the silver screen, they are able to reproduce the same effect on the pixelated screen as well. So check under the bed, keep the closet closed and sleep with the nightlight on, because we’re on the lookout for the 10 Best Horror Icon Appearances in Gaming History!
Starting off our list of the 10 Best Horror Icon Appearances in Gaming History is a voice actor who first started terrorizing the masses back in the '80s. Brad Dourif is best known for his work in Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers and for playing everyone's favorite homicidal doll in the Child's Play series. While the voice of Chucky has provided his fair share of voice overs for gaming, his most prominent roll was that of Piero Joplin in Dishonored. Piero looks and acts just as disturbing as we would expect a Brad Dourif character to be: Piero is a crazy inventor with an aptitude for spying on women as they bathe and helps design new ways for the main character to kill people.
"How about a hug for your old pal Merle?" Before Michael Rooker ever played Merle Dixon on The Walking Dead, he has portrayed many characters throughout the horror and science fiction genres of film, such as the title roles in the cult classics Slither and Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer. In gaming, Rooker is best known for providing his voice to The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct, Lollipop Chainsaw and Scarface: The World is Yours. But most players would recognize Rooker as the voice of Mike Harper in Call of Duty: Black Ops 2. Rooker has a history with the Black Ops series which might creep back around later.
Bruce Campbell's name has become synonymous with badassery. Known for playing Ash in the Evil Dead series, Campbell has left his mark across some of gaming's greatest titles. Aside from voicing Ash in the various Evil Dead titles, Campbell has also provided his voice for the movie-based Spider-Man games. In most of these, Campbell acts as the wisecracking narrator, which would make sense since Campbell himself had three different and great cameos throughout the movie series. Whether its narrating the stellar Spider-Man 2 or fighting hordes of Deadites, Bruce Campbell reminds us that it's great to be king.
Much like Bruce Campbell, Ron Perlman has had an illustrious career throughout the science fiction and horror genres. Perlman is famous for playing Hellboy and Clay Morrow, but he was also some of our favorite voices in games. We might remember him as Clayface in Batman: The Animated Series, Fleet Admiral Hood in Halo 2 and 3 and for the introductory sequences of the Fallout series. Last year, Perlman went through six hours of makeup in order to visit a sick child as a film-ready Hellboy for the Make-A-Wish foundation. Perlman's famous opening lines might remind us that war never changes, and here's hoping that Ron Perlman never changes either.
In the sixth Nightmare on Elm Street film, Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare, Freddy Kruger killed one of his victims through the use of a video game and Power Glove accessory. Nearly two decades later, we would find Freddy Kruger slashing up pixelated victims yet again in the 2011 Mortal Kombat reboot. We were surprised to find that NetherRealm Studios were able to include Freddy Kruger among the likes of Liu Kang and Johnny Cage. This version of Freddy was based off of Jackie Earle Haley's incarnation of the character in the 2010 Nightmare on Elm St. remake. Never forget, sleep kills!
Halfway through our list of 10 Horror Icon Appearances in Gaming History, we have one of the greatest directors in horror history. John Carpenter is known for providing us with horror and sci-fi classics such as Halloween, The Thing (a huge influence for Dead Space), They Live, Big Trouble in Little China, Escape from New York (which inspired Hideo Kojima to make Metal Gear), and The Fog. John Carpenter helmed F.E.A.R. 3, mainly by directing and scripting its cinematic sequences. F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin left us with one of the scariest and Weirdest Game Endings of all time, so it would only make sense that a legend of horror would be needed past that point.
The Monster Squad
One of our favorite 16-bit titles of all time, Zombies Ate My Neighbors was an excellent top-down run-and-gun. Zombies Ate My Neighbors took many tropes of the horror genre and turned it on its side in order to provide satire and fun. From shopping malls, graveyards, pyramids, black lagoons to alien spaceships, you had to save your typical horror movie victims (e.g.: cheerleaders) from the hordes of the undead. But it was the villains of this title which made it a great caricature of horror. There were zombies, huge guys in hockey masks wielding chainsaws, body-snatching plants, 50 ft tall babies (a spoof of Attack of the 50 Foot Woman), mummies, knife-carrying killer dolls, etc. You would think with so many dangerous creatures of the night, you would start off with something better than a water gun.
Without a doubt, Keith David is one of the greatest voice actors in gaming history. He has voiced some of our favorite characters, such as David Anderson in the Mass Effect series, the Arbiter in the Halo series, Sgt. Foley in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and even played himself in Saints Row 4. You may also recognize his voice from various Discovery Channel programs and on the United States Navy commercials. But what many fans may not realize is that Keith David became famous for his work in The Thing, They Live, Platoon, Armageddon, the Riddick series and Requiem for a Dream.
Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Ernie Hudson and Harold Ramis
When there's something strange in your neighborhood and you can't call on Ghostbusters 3, Atari and Sony decided that Ghostbusters: The Video Game would suffice. While most movie-based tie-ins tend to be atrocious monstrosities simply trying to make money off of the franchise's name, Ghostbusters: TVG was a fun depiction of what the third movie could have been. Despite the title being extremely short and offering very little replayability, Ghostbusters reunited the cast of the original films in order to provide the voices for their iconic characters. Bill Murray may have sounded rather uninspired, but it was still great to see the boys in grey back in the saddle and pulling ghosts into their toaster-like traps. With the 30th anniversary of the original film coming soon, we're still hoping for that third movie.
George Romero, Danny Trejo, Robert Englund, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Michael Rooker
Topping off our list of the 10 Best Horror Icon Appearances in Gaming History, we have a collection of some of horror's biggest names. Call of Duty: Black Ops featured a zombie mode, with the awesome name of Call of the Dead. Call of the Dead allowed you to play as one of four iconic horror actors. Sarah Michelle Gellar is best known for playing as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and for her work in The Grudge. Robert Englund is (and should always be) Freddy Kruger. Danny Trejo is better known as Machete, and also known for his work in From Dusk till Dawn, Halloween, Grindhouse, Predators and The Devil's Rejects. And Michael Rooker needs no reintroduction. To top off this list of horror's current greats, Call of the Dead features a zombified George Romero. Call of the Dead is an excellent tribute to Romero, whom we can all thank for making zombies a legitimate part of the horror genre with his Living Dead series.
Bonus: Christopher Lee
Most of you may remember Christopher Lee as Saruman or Count Dooku, but he will always be considered one of the foundations of cinematic horror. Bela Lugosi may have been the first to don the cape of Dracula, but Christopher Lee has been the actor to have played him the most. Gamers will recognize Christopher Lee as the voice of Ansem the Wise and DiZ in Kingdom Hearts 2 and Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days. We couldn't have a list of horror icons without Dracula, could we?