7) Resident Evil: Outbreak – Leech Man
The Resident Evil series has a number of different stalker creatures though for the most part they all seem to be Tyrant clones.
Leech Man makes the list not because he’s different but because of his nasty habit of picking on the wounded. His only appearance was in the largely forgotten Outbreak series, an attempt at online play where you and two others had to tackle various scenarios, in this case The Hive chapter.
Calling him a man might be going a little too far as it was really a mass of leeches but he/it sure knew how to make your life hell.
While he would drop in through the vents whenever he pleased, anyone with a bleeding wound would draw his attention faster than an X Factor winner disappearing into obscurity.
Not only that, if any of your team members died in the mission then they would transform into a leech zombie which then attacks you for the entire chapter and you can’t do anything to stop it. Try solving a puzzle with a slimy monster trying to drain you of all your blood. It often doesn’t end well.
6) Dead Space – the Regenerator
A question which always makes me wonder is who would win in a fight between xenomorphs or necromorphs. The former have acid blood and sharp teeth whilst the latter have sharp everything else and the Regenerator.
Gruesome and deformed the Regenerator is Dead Space’s creature to make you run like hell. Set upon you by a crazed zealot, he takes you by surprise by smashing out of an ordinary tube which you hoped was home to a dormant science experiment.
Take off his limbs and he grows them back. One false move and he takes your limbs; they don’t grow back. Much like other entries here he jumps out of vents and other dark areas and pretty much makes the entire medical wing living hell. He’d be higher up if you didn’t have to kill him in such a lame way.
5) System Shock – SHODAN
‘Look at you hacker,’ the stuttering cybernetic voice declares. SHODAN never follows you but is constantly watching. You see she hates humans and will gladly send her minions to dispatch you in a heartbeat.
It is a case of man versus machine, only your enemy is omnipotent, sadistic and has one hell of a creepy voice coupled with a face not even a mother could love. With no sense of ethics there really was nothing to stop SHODAN from slaughtering an entire base and at the same time making people distrustful of any form of AI to date. GLaDOS is tame in comparison.
Much like other stalkers she does everything she can to destroy you physically and mentally. It’s her house and you have to endure her taunts and death threats and there will be absolutely no talking with any other insects.
4) Amnesia: The Dark Descent – Brutes/ Gatherers
The entire cast are one big bunch of stalkers in Amnesia. Randomly appearing and always stepping out of the shadows to greet you, the gatherers/servants/evil monstrosities of Brennenburg were there and not there. Half the time you were jumping at your own shadow, the other hiding from a weird noise you heard next door that turned out to be nothing.
Then when you’re wandering through a dark corridor a groan from behind signals your end. You can’t fight them as you have no weapons and even looking at their mutilated bodies for too long drives you mad. It’s fly or die and in a game as immersive as Amnesia it feels shameful to be killed. Even their backstories are dark and brutal, there is no sympathy to be had from them or for them.
3) Silent Hill 4 – The Victims
A horror list wouldn’t be a horror list without Konami’s foggy adventures in the dark. An obvious inclusion would be Pyramid Head but he’s always stealing the foglight from the other offerings in the franchise. Take the victims from Silent Hill 4.
For the first half of the game you learn about disturbing deaths and rituals all a part of Walter Sullivan’s mother issues. You also come across living people who sadly are on Walter’s death list. What makes the victims fun is that you witnessed and couldn’t prevent their deaths and they are now literally haunting you.
How they died mirrors how they appear as ghosts which furthers this idea that you are guilty for their demise. In death each has a distinct personality that influences how they attack be it the electrocuted victim who shudders and smokes as if fresh from the grave or the drowned victim who’s bloated appearance is aptly repulsive.
Each is tough as well and can only be halted if you are willing to use an exceedingly rare item just to get them out of your way but hey you did let them die.
Clock Tower helped popularise stalkers as a gaming mechanic. Scissorman appears in all the Clock Tower games in various forms but all had one common factor: a giant pair of scissors perfect for giving you a messy haircut.
The idea of scissorman plays on the urban myth style serial killer and he accordingly has the invulnerability and knack of being able to teleport akin to Myers or Kruger.
Similarly a large number of the cast could be killed at random if you didn’t collect certain items or were just too slow. The setting likewise works in its favour having you visit a number of gothic locales that look uninviting.
You couldn’t fight him, nor would it be wise to even try, so you could guess most of your time was spent hiding.
Hiding places weren’t always safe though. Sometimes he could be hiding in them waiting patiently like a spider for his prey. When he did find you, and when your character was suitable weakened, he would taunt you with a jig before delivering the killing blow. Things just aren’t right if you’re mocked for your lack of virtual instincts.
1) Resident Evil 3 – The Nemesis
Okay so in my attempt to pick stalkers who aren’t obvious choices why then does the Nemesis get the first place. Unlike the majority of stalkers in this list he’s there from the start of the game and takes everything you throw at him and more. Even after being hit with a rail cannon he doesn’t give up on his quest to kill S.T.A.R.S members.
True when you first start hearing about a creature that scares Brad Vickers you don’t feel that frightened considering it took Brad five minutes to pluck up the courage to throw down a rocket launcher in the first game. Then he gets a tentacle smashed through his face and things take a turn for the worse.
Like any good story a character begins as a blank slate and develops throughout until the end when we see a different side to the character. The Nemesis might not be the most eloquent of creatures, and his narrow-mindedness never changes but he does at least develop physically becoming less and less humanoid as you progress.
He sets the standard for any stalker because he will pursue you no matter what. Whenever you play Resident Evil 3 you always feel threatened knowing that on top of the zombies you face there is a chance a leather bound maniac could come bursting through a door or window at any time. Only safe rooms provided safety but even then you’ll have to leave the room at some point.
He was strong, unkillable, forces you to go out your way to avoid him and always there to ruin your day and for that he is the perfect stalker and a lot like my ex.
Recent posts in Editorials