The Top 7... Failed Franchises We Know How to Fix

They've been broken for years. Here's how to set them right

First, let's take a look at the opening of Jaws, one of the most haunting, terrifying moments in movie history.

Did you see the shark once in that entire scene? No. And that's why it scared millions of people so deeply they avoided beaches altogether and actually began hunting sharksen masse. What's the lesson? We're scared to death of things we can't see or control. That's why the survival horror genre has been so successful - flipping the odds so you're in constant danger of being viciously murdered makes any game play entirely different.

A real Jaws game should treat the fish as the ultimate predator it is, and unfold in such a way that you freak out every time you see it. Perfect example: Silent Hill 2's Pyramid Head. Most of Silent Hill 2 is spent wandering run-down buildings and shadowy corridors (occasionally made of skin, of course), always afraid that something awful is going to leap out and get you. Most of the time nothing does, but when a masked man carrying a five-foot sword lurches around the corner, possibly while carrying the body of something he recently killed, you can feel how terrible he is. And all you think is "getawaygetawaygetaway."

Imagine a survival horror game that takes place entirely on water. You start off on a small boat with a few people, one of which is brutally mauled by Jaws. The boat barely chugs along, having suffered irreparable damage, and will undoubtedly sink in a few hours. Other ships come and go, perhaps also attacked or a small island is found with no way to dock... there are plenty of ideas to stretch the game along. Jaws should elicit a nervous, panicked sensation every time he appears, be it swimming through a pool of gory people chunks or in between the battered hulls of downed boats. The point is, don't put us in control of him, a move that goes against the film's frightful nature. It turns a feared monster into a joke, and that's not the way to go. Like Godzilla he needs to be the subject of fear, desperation and hopelessness. Notthisnonsense.

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