September 24, 2021

Xbox One X

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Layers of Fear taught me how to be scared again

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I was a huge wimp when I was younger. The strangest things would unsettle me. Red Skull in the very dodgy early 1990s version of Captain America terrified me for some unfathomable reason. I didn’t sleep for days. Walking past Aliens action figures in Woolworths scared the life out of me, simply because I’d played five minutes of Aliens on the Commodore 64 and it was far too atmospheric for my overly imaginative mind. That’s how absurd it was.

As a teenager, I avoided many films and games. Things I would have clearly loved because of a great storyline, like The Shining or the Silent Hill games. It wasn’t the end of the world, but it did make me feel a bit daft that I hadn’t grown out of such fears.

And then the world actually ended. Or at least, the world I once knew did. My dearly loved father died suddenly, and it was beyond awful. In the space of about 30 minutes, I went from a fairly regular 23-year-old to a temporarily broken husk of a person. Turns out it’s even worse than you can imagine. It’s incredibly emotionally gruelling and horrific. It throws your world off-kilter, leaving you unable to trust in anything. Because, really, if someone can go from healthy to convulsing to dead in a short space of time in the middle of the night, why would you feel safe about anything ever again?

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