One of the best parts of the Halloween season is deciding which horror game icon is top dog – who would beat who in a fight, who’s the scariest, and who you’d least like to meet down a dark alley without you’re running shoes. But we thought we’d try something a little different this year and put to bed the burning question that’s been on everyone’s mind since around 2008: which horror game monster would do the most damage to your smartphone!
For the purposes of this very academic and important thought-experiment, let’s assume that you have a top-of-the-range smartphone – say an iPhone XS or Samsung Galaxy S9 – and, in a desperate attempt to ward off an incoming attack from our rogues’ gallery, you throw your phone up like a 4G-enabled shield. Without that image in mind, let’s begin:
Pyramid Head (Silent Hill 2)
The literal embodiment of James Sunderland’s warped masculinity, Pyramid Head – who has since become a go-to villain for the franchise – is a serious contender for one of the scariest monsters in horror game history. His ripped bod, tattered skirt and aforementioned pyramid head are enough to spook anyone, let alone the psychological implications of seeing your own ego in carnate!
But how much damage is he going to do to your smartphone if you bump into him down one of Silent Hills many, many alleys? Well, considering that his weapon of choice is a (very) large sword that could easily cleave a man in two – probably quite a lot. Luckily, Pyramid Head’s main goal is to shatter your fragile little mind, so maybe your phone will be okay after all.
Damage Score: If your phone gets in the way, it doesn’t stand a chance – 8/10.
Slenderman (Slenderman: The Arrival)
A relatively new addition to the pantheon of horror game icons, Slenderman is the amorphous entity that stalks the woods of Slenderman: The Arrival. While not physically imposing – he’s wanders around in cheap suit and tie combo – Slenderman will silent haunt you as you go about your business, appearing just in the corners of your vision before flitting away. And if you get too close to the truth, he’ll shut off all our electrics and do god-knows-what to you.
Damage Score: Your device will definitely remain intact, but the internal systems will be fried – 6/10
Count Dracula (Castlevania)
Prince of Darkness. Trouble of Transylvania. If you run into a Dracula in a dark alley, you’re not going to have a good time. But on the bright side, your smartphone is unlikely to suffer much damage. The main weaponry in Dracula’s arsenal are his fangs, army of demonic minions, and near-limitless sex appeal, and seeing as your phone cannot fall for supernatural charms, it won’t be harmed.
Damage Score: You’ve become a refreshment, but your phone hasn’t got a scratch – 2/10.
Xenomorph (Alien: Isolation)
If there’s one thing scarier than being stalked by a blood-thirsty monster, it’s being stalked by a blood-thirsty monster…. in space! Alien: Isolation builds on the success of the Alien films by putting the player in the driving seat, trying to escape the eponymous alien while it runs amok through a spaceship, making you feel like you are truly outmatched against the perfect killing machine.
While you, a fleshy human, stand little to no chance against a Xenomorph, it’s highly unlikely that it poses much of a threat to your smartphone – it can’t eat it and it can’t impregnate it, so it probably won’t bother trying. However, if, in your mad scramble to defend yourself, you manage to cut the Xenomorph, it’s a whole different story. The acidic blood will easily melt your precious device, so our advice is to not put up a fight.
Damage Score: No matter how expensive your waterproof case is, it isn’t going to save your phone – 7/10
Dr. Salvador (Resident Evil 4)
No amount of supernatural, chair-levitating shenanigans will ever top the sheer visceral horror of being chased around by a big bloke with a chainsaw. So it’s really no surprise that Dr. Salvador, a low-level antagonist in Resident Evil 4, is so frightening. A big part of this character’s fear-factor is his placement in the game: namely, right at the beginning. Barely 10 minutes into the campaign and you’re up against the guy who got a PHD in dismemberment.
This horror villain has one weapon and one weapon only – his trusty rusty chainsaw, and he knows how to use it! Your smartphone stands no chance in this one, no matter how good you think your case is. If a chainsaw is primarily designed to cut down trees, and moonlights as a limb-detaching tool, then it’s safe to say that it’ll all but obliterate a mobile and no amount of mobile phone insurance is going to help you.
Damage Score: Let’s be honest, the you and your phone are DOOMED! – 10/10
While this horror game villain only got to spook us in a playable demo, she certainly made an impact. As the player makes their way around the singular corridor that is the setting for P.T., they are constantly harassed by the ghostly image of their (presumably) recently-deceased wife and every now and then she’ll sneak up on you for a little surprise!
While Lisa’s horrifying face poses a serious threat to your mental wellbeing, there’s a strong case to be made that everything that’s happening exists in a dream or some form of messed-up afterlife – it’s all a metaphor. So, if you accept that the reality of P.T. isn’t real, your physical smartphone is safe and sound. You’ll just be haunted for the rest of eternity in a hell you can’t escape.
Damage Score: It’s all a dream. Nothing’s real. She can’t hurt you or your phone! – 0/10
So there you have it. Now you know, definitely, which horror game icons are going to completely destroy your phone when you run into them, and which ones are going to leave it mostly intact, so your grieving relatives will have something to remember you by!