You might have heard of Well Played before. It’s CMU’s series of books on game design, authored by a wide range of critics, journalists, and armchair game anthropologists like myself. The third book in the series, Well Played 3.0, is now out, and I’m happy to report that it contains an article I wrote about Siren. Here’s a snippet:
Described this way, as just the sum of its various parts, Siren sounds like a pretty good horror game.
But it’s not a pretty good horror game; it’s not even a great horror game. It’s the Scariest Video Game Ever Made. And to understand why it is the Scariest Game Ever Made, we need to look at how Siren works at a much more fundamental level.
You can read the whole article online if you want. I reread it for the first time in almost a year this evening and I was sort of surprised to find that I open the piece with a little history of this site. And yes, one year later,
Siren is still the scariest game I’ve played.