Horror comics offer a unique opportunity to make excellent narrative-driven games. Here are a few that Telltale needs to make into the next great episodic experience.

Five Horror Comics That Should be Telltale’s Next Adventure Game

Horror comics offer a unique opportunity to make excellent narrative-driven games. Here are a few that Telltale needs to make into the next great episodic experience.
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Telltale games are very unique for several reasons. Unlike most games, which are released as a whole and singular unit, Telltale uses an episodic structure that breaks the game into several parts, with each part further developing the world, plot, and themes of the game. 

The company has published many successful spin-off titles stemming from popular IPs like Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Minecraft, and Batman, with more in the works . And most (if not all) of their game have plots that play out differently based on the player's choices, either through dialogue or actions. Those choices affect how the story will resolve itself at its conclusion.

But even though Telltale has tackled a number of different franchises with a number of different styles, there's one genre they haven't touched yet -- the horror genre. 

Now, there's already a lot of crossover between gaming and horror films, with lots of scary movies being based on existing survival/horror video games. And while books might seem like the next obvious choice for new Telltale fodder, there's another corner of the horror genre that we'd love to see the developer explore -- the world of horror comics. 

There are lots of great horror comics out there that are packed with excellent storylines. And their serial format makes them a perfect fit for the Telltale episodic formula. Horror comics don't just keep their readers in suspense and build terrifying worlds -- they also have stellar narratives that appeal to Telltale's style. From a boy who manages to murder lots of people to an STD that makes you more good-looking, horror comics explore all kinds of situations that could easily be ported into engaging video game experiences. 

But which ones would make the absolute best games? Let's find out. The following five horror comics are the best of the best -- purely because their plots are too damn good for Telltale to pass up. Allowing players to make critical choices in these stories would make for some seriously awesome narrative gameplay. 

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5. Johnny the Homicidal Maniac

  • Writer/Artist: Jhonen Vasquez
  • Publisher: Slave Labor Graphics

This comic is about a person named Johnny who commits a string of gruesome murders and manages to get away with it -- a plot that's simple, straightforward, and to the point.

Now, if this was made into a Telltale title, it would definitely have a lot of wiggle room in terms of choices and consequences. Kill this person, or let them live? If killed, will any other potential victims be effected in one way or another? If so, how? Those questions would beg to be answered if this comic were brought onto modern consoles as a game.

4. Gyo

  • Writer/Artist: Junji Ito
  • Publisher: VIZ Media

Though this is more of a manga, it can still be considered a comic for our purposes. The plot in Gyo is very dense. But to summarize, a bunch of bipdeal fish have invaded Japan, and the people must save their country from the scaly threat. At first, the narrative might sound childish or unusual -- however, the plot functions on multiple levels, giving it a layer of death. We won't spoil everything, but we will mention that it reveals a "death stench", which ultimately connects it to the narrative of World War II.

If this were ported into a Telltale game, the player could make critical choices that would combat the fish threat or try to escape it. Perhaps the character could choose between facing the problem on their own, or risking the lives of others to ask for help. Either way, the plot of this series is extraordinary, and could create quote a game -- especially for a western audience, since the comic is of Japanese origin and offers a different perspective on one of the most iconic moments in world history.  

3. Fatale

  • Writer: Ed Brubaker
  • Artist: Sean Phillips
  • Publisher: Image Comics

This comic series is about a woman named Jo who can hypnotize men into becoming infatuated with her, and get them entangled in her life. Every man she seduces eventually pays dearly for getting involved with her, and she's also being pursued by a cult. So there's a lot happening on a narrative level here. 

If Telltale made this into an adventure game, there would clearly be a lot to play with. You could choose which men to hypnotize and which ones to ignore. You could even play as someone who's been hypnotized and become involved with Jo, and then must find a way to extricate yourself fromt hat dangerous situation. No matter which perspective you took, the presence of a cult means that things can get out of control on either side -- perfect for another riveting Telltale title.  

2. Aliens: Salvation

  • Writer: Dave Gibbons
  • Artist: Mike Mignola
  • Publisher: Dark Horse

A crewman and his captain are forced to abandon ship, and soon crash-land onto a foreign planet. Needless to say, they are not the only occupants of the ship. If you know anything about Alien, you know they're sharing the ship with Xenomorphs!

This could definitely prove to be an interesting Telltale game in terms of actions that players have to take. It might require a little manipulation of the story to really make this work as a game, but it wouldn't be the first time Telltale has done that. 

You could choose not to abandon the ship and instead face the Xenomorphs head on. You could also create unique scenarios to deal with the problem, both on the ship and outside of it on the planet itself. Perhaps you'd even need to choose whether to interact with the other character or work alone. 

Regardless of how it's approached, the iconic world of Alien and the opportunity to explore a truly strange world that departs from the relatively normal aesthetic of other Telltale games would make for a truly interesting adventure. 

Because in space, no one can hear you scream...

1. The Beauty 

  • Writers: Jeremy Haun & Jason A. Hurley
  • Artist: Jeremy Haun
  • Publisher: Image Comics

This horror comic has an incredibly unique plot. In an alternate world, people are obsessed with being gorgeous, handsome, and generally good looking. But what if there was a way to become more beautiful with every passing day...and the only way to accomplish that is through contracting an STD? That's basically what this comic series is about!

It's an interesting storyline, since the "gift" comes with a price -- death. And as a result, two detectives are on the case to find out what is going on and why it's happening.

We think it's kind of obvious why this would make an excellent Telltale game. Given the intriguing plot and how the narrative unfolds, there's the potential for several episodes that culminate in an infectious grand finale. And it would also make a great detective game, much like Wolf Among Us. The choices you make will determine what happens to you, and everyone around you...and the wrong decision could be fatal. The stakes don't get much higher than that. 

Of course, there are hundreds -- if not thousands -- of other horror comics out there. And we're pretty sure that a lot of them would also make excellent narrative-driven gaming experiences. What horror comics would you like to see made into a fully realized Telltale game? Feel free to share down in the comments!

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Long time gamer (15 years+). Most favorite title is either Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time or Majora's Mask. Prefer single player games to multiplayer games, but occasionally play them as well. Proud owner of N64 and Nintendo SNES.