Core of Fear is a 2019 LitRPG Dungeon Core horror novel by Jonathan Brooks. Prolific serial killer Clive Logan is finally caught, executed by lethal injection, and sent to Hell. As it turns out, Clive enjoys the experience a bit too much, and as an alternative, he's put into a "spirit core" to haunt a house and torment its residents, securing their torment, and eventually their souls, for Hell.
This novel exhibits the following tropes:
- A Dungeon Is You: Unlike many examples of the genre, there is no actual building, just level progression with Clive trapped to the house.
- Driven to Suicide: Andrea commits suicide after a final haunting, fueled by guilt over her sister's death, the cumulative effect of Clive's Depressive Miasma ability, and having shot Mark (although she doesn't realize who he is at the time).
- Electromagnetic Ghosts: One of Clive's abilities is to disrupt electronics.
- Fright Deathtrap: The stated goal of Clive's existence is to literally scare the residents to death. He only manages it with Jessica.
- Ghostly Chill: One of Clive's early abilities is to create a small localized "cold spot" with a later upgrade allowing him to create a much larger one.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: One of Clive's later abilities allows him to wipe the ghostly experience from a person's mind so as to avoid suspicion.
- Too Kinky to Torture: Clive suffers from some unnamed condition that has kept him from feeling most emotions or pain throughout his life. He finds the torment of Hell enjoyable just for the sheer sensation.
- Whispering Ghosts: Another of Clive's abilities involves making a target hear indistinct whispers of which the only word they can make out is their name.