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It appears that many Nightmare Fuel pages have problems, including:

1. Listing non-scary things that made the viewer feel slightly uncomfortable at worst.

2. Having spoiler tags on them (which is against the page's guidelines).

3. Listing Fridge Horror and fan theories.

And much more!

On a few occasions, people from outside the site's community have pointed out our overly lax usage of Nightmare Fuel to make fun of us, meaning that it can legitimately harm our reputation to let this go unchecked.

The TRS thread meant for redefining Nightmare Fuel started to become a place for cleaning up Nightmare Fuel pages in general, so we may as well move these discussions to Long Term Projects where they belong.

Here are the guidelines to determine whether something is Nightmare Fuel or not.

    Nightmare Fuel rules 
  • This is a page whose name is intended to be taken more literally than most. It's not enough for material to be scary; to truly qualify, it has to be frightening enough to legitimately unnerve/disturb the viewer, with actually being nightmare-inducing as the ultimate endpoint.
    • Good signs that something IS Nightmare Fuel include if:
      • It left you feeling shaken even after the credits had rolled, you turned the last page, or are otherwise done with the work.
      • You have a hard time falling asleep if you think about it at night, or have a literal nightmare about it.
      • You dread that episode, scene, level, chapter, or song during re-watches, and consider skipping it.
    • With that said, don't add something just because it happens to be your personal phobia. For example, spiders can be scary and many people have arachnophobia, but just because a spider happens to be in the work, it does not make a Nightmare Fuel entry. It needs to reasonably be scary to someone without the phobia.
    • Don't confuse tension with fear. If the hero is in trouble, but you know he'll make it out okay at the end, it's probably not Nightmare Fuel unless the threat is especially disturbing.
  • Explain WHY the entry scared you. Try to convey your sense of fear to your readers. Avoid putting up Zero-Context Examples.
    • Remember that Weblinks Are Not Examples, and neither are quotes on their own. You should explain the horror in your own words, rather than rely on others to do so.
  • Don't add things that might have scared someone. If it didn't scare you, and you don't personally know anyone else who was scared, you shouldn't be adding it to Nightmare Fuel.
  • Nightmare Fuel should stick to you even after you're done with the work.
    • If something is initially presented as scary but turns out to be harmless, it's most likely not Nightmare Fuel since The Reveal makes the scariness vanish.
    • Jump Scares are a good source of Nightmare Fuel, but not all of them automatically qualify: being startled is not the same as being scared.
  • Hypotheticals are not Nightmare Fuel:
    • Remember that Trailers Always Lie: a scene that is presented as scary in the trailer could very well turn out to be inoffensive in the finished work. Only add examples from unreleased works if they were especially terrifying in the previews.
    • Fan theories do not belong on the Nightmare Fuel page under any circumstance. No matter how much evidence they have to support them, don't add them until they've been officially confirmed. In the meanwhile, take them to Wild Mass Guessing.
    • Fridge Horror goes on the Fridge page, not Nightmare Fuel. Don't add it unless it's Ascended Fridge Horror.
  • Keep in mind the work's intended audience when considering whether or not something is Nightmare Fuel.
    • If something is normal or expected in the genre, it does not automatically qualify. Violence in a Fighting Series or gore in a horror movie must be especially disturbing or gruesome by the work's standards to be Nightmare Fuel.
    • Remember that Kids Shouldn't Watch Horror Films. If a work is rated PG-13 or higher but would only be scary to young children, it's not Nightmare Fuel.
    • The standards on what qualifies as Nightmare Fuel are especially stringent on works aimed at children and pre-teens: kids have hyperactive imaginations, so even something benign can give them nightmares.
  • Spoiler tags do not belong on Nightmare Fuel pages. Much of what scares us comes from inherently spoilery stuff such as death and the unknown, so finding spoilers on these pages should be expected.
  • Nightmare Fuel is an Audience Reaction, so it needs to be scary for the audience. Describing how the characters react to something scary isn't needed. Just because something scares them, that doesn't mean it scares us as well.
  • Nightmare Fuel is a No Real Life Examples, Please! page. Meta-examples involving the actors, production, or behind-the-scenes incidents are not allowed.

Guidelines when proposing cleanup of a page:

  • Some rules are pretty objective. If you see a Zero-Context Example, Fridge Horror, Real Life example, speculation, In-Universe reaction that isn't scary to the viewers, examples that explicitly describe themselves as not being very scary (including "mildly creepy", "somewhat unnerving", and other synonymous phrases), or examples that are just scene summaries without going into detail about why it's so scary, you can (and should) remove them immediately without coming here to ask.
  • You should also strip all spoiler tags from the page. Itty Bitty Wiki Tools has a tool for that, but it can cause problems, so if you use it be sure to preview the page and thoroughly look it over.
  • Once you've fixed the objective issues with the page, bring it here so we can look at the more subjective problems, such as examples that may not be scary enough to qualify. If a consensus is reached that a certain entry does not qualify, it can be removed.

Edited by Zuxtron on Aug 1st 2020 at 9:40:30 AM

Redmess Redmess from Netherlands
Redmess
Mar 26th 2020 at 3:17:25 PM

Me neither, most of it seems to be confusing mild violence with things that are scary.

Optimism is a duty.
GastonRabbit A real nowhere man from Robinson, Illinois, USA Relationship Status: I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me
Mar 28th 2020 at 10:39:49 PM

Someone added this example to YMMV.Animal Crossing New Horizons:

  • Accidental Nightmare Fuel: Harvey's Island can be a surprisingly creepy place to visit. While it's just a photo studio in context, from a gameplay perspective, you're essentially kidnapping/duplicating your villagers and force them to take pictures with you. It goes further, as the villagers are utterly lifeless, only repeating the interaction you gave them and when you go into another room, they follow you, without even moving! It feels like something straight out of The Stepford Wives or Us

I have a few problems with this:

I recall that this thread decided to hold off on cleaning up NF entries for Pokémon Sword and Shield until more time passed after its release (which has since happened in those games' case) to avoid provoking edit wars, so maybe the same applies here.

Edit: I just looked at NightmareFuel.Animal Crossing and there are a lot of examples that were previously discussed in this thread. Did this thread not get around to removing those examples, or has someone added them back?

I'll give my $0.02 and say that I disagree with the entry for the 2 AM theme in the original game, because I've always thought it's Awesome Music and not Nightmare Fuel; if it matters, I was a teenager when the original game was released in North America, so maybe age is a factor.

Edited by GastonRabbit on Mar 28th 2020 at 1:17:14 PM

"An ear for an ear makes it hard to hear." —Gaston (Animal Crossing: New Horizons)
Mar 29th 2020 at 11:08:36 AM

[up] I see one example which is that one of the items in AC:NH is a gravestone. I can't imagine anyone actually having nightmares about that, the only scary thing about it is from pre-release speculation that someone specific might be buried under it.

WarJay77 Some like it hot from The Void Relationship Status: Armed with the Power of Love
Some like it hot
Mar 29th 2020 at 12:26:51 PM

I genuinely think the only things that might apply for any Animal Crossing game in general is that one person's creepy horror-themed town (and that's fanmade) and maybe Resetti when he actually mattered. It's just too sweet and fluffy of a series to have anything nightmarish about it, so you really have to stretch to find anything.

Maybe the bees too. Maybe.

Edited by WarJay77 on Mar 29th 2020 at 3:27:04 PM

Wick Check Project Official Sandbox (TM)
Mar 29th 2020 at 12:52:23 PM

I haven't played any Animal Crossing game but I've seen people saying the K.K. Dirge and Hypno music is scary, and I've seen the "gyroid face replacing the villager's face" and 3:33 AM alien things on multiple "scariest easter eggs in video games" lists.

The real life tragedy of war can be considered a drink coaster
WarJay77 Some like it hot from The Void Relationship Status: Armed with the Power of Love
Some like it hot
Mar 29th 2020 at 12:54:09 PM

[up] Alright, those'll count too then.

(To be completely fair, the last Animal Crossing game I've been able to play is City Folk, so shame on me, IK).

Wick Check Project Official Sandbox (TM)
Brainulator9 Short-Term Projects herald from US Relationship Status: I get a feeling so complicated...
Short-Term Projects herald
Mar 29th 2020 at 6:01:53 PM

NightmareFuel.A Bugs Life has your typical bad examples (low context, Fridge, etc.) but I definitely feel that the villains count.

Contains 20% less fat than the leading value brand!
Mar 30th 2020 at 5:55:33 PM

I actually have had two nightmares about Animal Crossing (one about getting a computer-bricking error and the other involving getting separated from my family) to the point that they're putting me off from playing the game. But yes, please clean up the AC and A Bug's Life pages.

[down] Nope, nothing scary in the games.

Edited by Grotadmorv on Mar 30th 2020 at 10:23:00 AM

WarJay77 Some like it hot from The Void Relationship Status: Armed with the Power of Love
Some like it hot
Mar 30th 2020 at 6:02:07 PM

[up] But those aren't the games being scary, right? Nothing in the games triggered those nightmares?

Wick Check Project Official Sandbox (TM)
Apr 4th 2020 at 9:34:50 PM

M*A*S*H is full of Fridge Horror, non-examples, dramatic or tense scenes and ZCE.

    MASH Nightmare Fuel 
  • The scene in "Radar's Report" where Trapper confronts and contemplates murdering the Chinese prisoner whom he holds responsible for the death of one of his patients. The scariest thing about it is the strong implication Trapper would really have gone through with it were it not for Hawkeye showing up.Fridge Horror
  • The manner in which Colonel Wortman fanatically describes how General Kelly's death should really be seen by the public eye in "Iron Guts Kelly" can appear really unnerving to some."Can be unnerving"
  • Lieutenant Smith holds the entire medical unit at gunpoint throughout "A Full Rich Day" and never lets up on his threats and intimidation until the sergeant he brought in for treatment is looked after by the doctors.Tension is not nightmare fuel
  • In "Mad Dogs and Servicemen", a traumatised Corporal Travis comes out of his shell to Trapper, going on to describe how he and his unit were helplessly mown down by enemy tanks.Dramatic moment
    Travis: Those tanks... they just kept coming and coming. They were so big. They were so big, you know. And... they killed everyone. They killed them even after they were dead. I... I tried. I really tried. But I couldn't move. I... I... I didn't fire my rifle. I didn't throw my grenade. I... I didn't do anything. I just laid there like some coward!
  • If you think conditions for the 4077 are tough, especially when the unit endures barrage after barrage of shellfire, then chances are you haven't seen the episode "Aid Station" yet.ZCE
  • In "It Happened One Night", a patient resting in the post-op ward, Abbott, is morbidly tense, warning the doctors away from him, a clear sign he's on the edge of a breakdown. As shelling starts to hit the camp, the inevitable occurs and Abbott flies into a blind panic. By the time Margaret and Hawkeye get him to calm down, the man is in tears and whimpering, pleading for the explosions to be stopped. He continues to break down for the rest of the episode, snapping at Margaret and yelling at Klinger. Then, as another bout of shelling hits the camp, he panics again, begging miserably for the doctors to let him die before the artillery can kill him. Hawkeye and Margaret's last altercation with him leads to the chief surgeon and head nurse having to physically struggle with him and sedate him. And that's the last we see of him in the episode.Tension
  • The episode "Dreams" has a very Twilight Zone-y feel to it. As it includes dream scenes like Margaret in a bloody wedding dress with her wedding bed covered in wounded soldiers, and Hawkeye losing his arms and screaming to the sound of helicopters, or Father Mulcahey's dream where he's Pope and starts to deliver a sermon...only for dripping blood to splatter on his Bible from the bloody dead body hanging next to him.Dramatic scene
  • The ghosts in "Follies of the Living - Concerns of the Dead".ZCE
  • The scenes in "Point of View" where Private Rich is choking and struggling to breathe due to his throat injury. Since the episode is shot from his point of view, we don't actually see what the injury looks like, but the sounds alone are terrifying.Fridge Horror
  • After Charles has been taking amphetamines for too long in "Dr. Winchester and Mr. Hyde," his health takes a downward tumble and he can only answer, "I don't know! I don't know!" when Hawkeye and B.J. ask him what's wrong and not because he's lying about taking the amphetamines, but because he seriously doesn't know what they're doing to him! It's terrifying for those who have experienced or witnessed someone suddenly thrown into the same situation regardless of the cause.Dramatic scene, not nightmare fuel
  • The situation that Charles and Klinger wind up in in "They Call the Wind Korea," lost, stranded with a handful of injured soldiers, woefully under-equipped for their circumstances, and the strong possibility of any one or all of them dying from exposure during the night. Add the fact that Charles has to perform a few surgical procedures sans anesthesia.Tension. Also they find out they were just over a hill from the camp
  • What happens to Dr. Steve Newsom (Edward Herrmann) in "Heal Thyself". He's showing subtle signs of his true mental state from the beginning and the disclosure that he served at the Pusan perimeter is another clue. The real nightmare fuel is what Pierce and Hunnicutt say at the end: Newsom's fate could be theirs, at any time.Dramatic, not nightmare fuel
  • The first portion of "Life Time" is this and a combination of Nausea Fuel as Hawkeye spends the first several minutes with his unwashed, unprotected hand inside a man's chest to stop some bleeding until Margaret can find the clamp they need.Not nightmare fuel
  • On a couple of occasions, a patient has started to wake up during surgery.ZCE
  • In the series finale, the reveal of Hawkeye's Sanity Slippage: during a bus trip where everyone had to be completely silent while the North Koreans were looking for them, a woman couldn't keep a chicken quiet and ended up killing it. Hawkeye's weeping over this seems a bit over the top...but then the camera pans down and reveals the woman was actually forced to kill her baby while tearfully looking him right in the eye, such a horrific sight that Hawkeye suffered a mental break and insisted on remembering it as a chicken.Maybe. Tearjerker for sure, but I'm not sure if it's nightmare fuel

GastonRabbit A real nowhere man from Robinson, Illinois, USA Relationship Status: I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me
Apr 4th 2020 at 9:47:20 PM

Remember that ridiculous New Horizons example I mentioned? This was tacked onto it as a badly indented second bullet point:

The way Zipper uses Offscreen Teleportation is also eerily similar to a horror movie villain.

Er, what? In terms of mobility, I've never seen him do anything but stay in roughly the same part of the island, and while it is true that his odd appearance (i.e., either looking like or actually being someone in an Easter Bunny costume) is played up in-game, he doesn't resemble a horror movie villain at all. It seems like he's generally considered annoying, not scary.

Edit: Off-topic since it's not listed as Nightmare Fuel, but this is directly under the above:

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: One fan theory that gained popularity during the unpopular Bunny Day event is that Zipper T Bunny is actually a terrorist madman, set on destroying your island's ecology by replacing all its natural resources with Easter eggs. Alternatively, he's replacing the resources for personal gain because they're more valuable on his own island's Nook Shop than eggs.

What am I looking at? No, seriously, these parts of the page are doin' me head in. This character has been around since City Folk (released in 2008), so the reactions he's getting from his New Horizons appearance are baffling.

Edit: As I noted in my next post, the baffling part about this page isn't that it covers jokes about Zipper being evil and/or scary, but rather that the page glosses over the fact that they're jokes instead of things fans actually believe. It was late at night and I was tired when I wrote the previous parts of this post, so I was probably less articulate at the time.

Edited by GastonRabbit on Apr 5th 2020 at 1:31:58 PM

"An ear for an ear makes it hard to hear." —Gaston (Animal Crossing: New Horizons)
AlleyOop Relationship Status: GAR for Archer
Apr 5th 2020 at 8:46:11 AM

I can attest to the Evil Zipper interpretation as definitely being a thing due to the uptick in audience although it's humorous. I think the entry should be retained but probably edited to point out that it's mostly a newer joke.

GastonRabbit A real nowhere man from Robinson, Illinois, USA Relationship Status: I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me
Apr 5th 2020 at 11:14:44 AM

[up]I don't have a problem with it being tongue-in-cheek as opposed to serious speculation, especially since I do think it's funny if it's framed as the joke that it is instead of being presented as something fans actually believe. In addition, TV Tropes has had lots of wacky joke theories on Wild Mass Guessing subpages. The issue is that the page gives the impression that people actually think that Zipper is some sort of villain instead of merely joking about it, particularly due to the Accidental Nightmare Fuel entry directly above the Alternative Character Interpretation entry.

I feel like that joke theory would work better if listed under Epileptic Trees instead of Alternative Character Interpretation.

I get that YMMV can't be played with (in-universe examples notwithstanding), but if it could be, I feel that these would be listed as parodied examples of Nightmare Fuel and Alternative Character Interpretation instead of serious examples (in the former case, Nightmare Retardant isn't the right Audience Reaction since Zipper's Uncanny Valley-ness is played up in-universe... do we have an Audience Reaction equivalent to Faux Horrific?).

Edited by GastonRabbit on Apr 5th 2020 at 1:27:15 PM

"An ear for an ear makes it hard to hear." —Gaston (Animal Crossing: New Horizons)
Apr 5th 2020 at 11:42:04 AM

I just found an awful page.......

As someone who watched the movie, I didn't find anything to be nightmarish, although I'm older than the target audience

Edited by KingofNightmares on Apr 5th 2020 at 12:04:21 PM

The real life tragedy of war can be considered a drink coaster
WarJay77 Some like it hot from The Void Relationship Status: Armed with the Power of Love
Some like it hot
Apr 5th 2020 at 12:55:47 PM

The issue is, if it's just a joke, it's not Nightmare Fuel however you slice it. Editing it to say that it is a joke doesn't change the fact that it's not actually scary and doesn't belong on a page dedicated to scary things.

Wick Check Project Official Sandbox (TM)
AlleyOop Relationship Status: GAR for Archer
Apr 5th 2020 at 1:37:19 PM

Yeah the NF entry for ACNH should definitely be purged. But the ACI can be left mostly alone, since humorous entries are allowed on there, as long as they're of widespread enough currency (which in this case it is, considering even I know of it through fandom osmosis).

Edited by AlleyOop on Apr 5th 2020 at 4:40:42 AM

jandn2014 Hangs around Image Pickin’ a lot from somewhere in Connecticut Relationship Status: Hiding
Hangs around Image Pickin’ a lot
Apr 5th 2020 at 5:25:59 PM

[up][up][up] I'm assuming Accidental Nightmare Fuel images should not be on actual Nightmare Fuel pages? Because if so, then I'll at least create a thread in Image Pickin' for the page image.

Also, could somebody familiar with Littlest Pet Shop (2012) look through NightmareFuel.Littlest Pet Shop 2012 for me? Considering the show is aimed at younger kids, the page seems highly prone to abuse.

Edited by jandn2014 on Apr 5th 2020 at 8:26:09 AM

there's nobody here
GastonRabbit A real nowhere man from Robinson, Illinois, USA Relationship Status: I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me
Apr 6th 2020 at 12:30:38 AM

[up]I don't know if this is relevant, but Main.Accidental Nightmare Fuel is a Definition Only Page that defines a subset of Nightmare Fuel. Actual examples are still supposed to be listed under Nightmare Fuel and not Accidental Nightmare Fuel.

Edit: I hadn't been awake for very long when I originally wrote this, so my wording was unclear. See my next post.

Edited by GastonRabbit on Apr 6th 2020 at 8:18:11 AM

"An ear for an ear makes it hard to hear." —Gaston (Animal Crossing: New Horizons)
jandn2014 Hangs around Image Pickin’ a lot from somewhere in Connecticut Relationship Status: Hiding
Hangs around Image Pickin’ a lot
Apr 6th 2020 at 5:41:17 AM

[up] Since Sonic’s old design isn’t intentionally scary, I’m assuming it can go?

there's nobody here
GastonRabbit A real nowhere man from Robinson, Illinois, USA Relationship Status: I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me
Apr 6th 2020 at 6:12:46 AM

[up]I don't know about that specific example (I'm leaning toward just listing it under Uncanny Valley), but unintentional examples are fine, at least when it comes to listing examples (not sure about images). I just botched my wording in my previous post. When I said "actual examples are supposed to go under Nightmare Fuel", I didn't mean that Nightmare Fuel was reserved for intentional horror when I said "actual"; I meant that examples of Accidental Nightmare Fuel are supposed to be listed under Nightmare Fuel and not Accidental Nightmare Fuel.

Edited by GastonRabbit on Apr 6th 2020 at 8:13:32 AM

"An ear for an ear makes it hard to hear." —Gaston (Animal Crossing: New Horizons)
Apr 6th 2020 at 7:06:18 PM

Watch out! You're gonna crash! Aah!

    Sonic Adventure 
  • There are very few places in this game where you can drown without doing so on purpose. Accessible water that goes over the characters' heads is relatively scarce, and the water you do find that meets this criterion can usually be escaped with a single jump. However, if you do find yourself in a tight underwater situation (usually with Big the Cat), all your childhood nightmares will come to life as the infamous drowning music from the Genesis games plays, this time embellished with an entire orchestra. I've heard of this scaring people. Keep.
  • Red Mountain, a Norfair-like U-rated hell, with the addition of gravestones, and walls with cells containing ghosts dressed in prison uniforms and scary spiders. A mission card in Director's Cut hits the Surprise Creepy home: As a kid, I was unnerved by this, but nothing more.
  • The Orca that attempts to devour Sonic as he speeds across rickety ramps and bridges to get to the other parts of the Emerald Coast. What's scary is that this Orca is gigantic compared to Sonic and it comes out of nowhere. If the Orca catches up, he'll smash through the ramp you're on and you'll drown. Not scary.
  • Perfect Chaos, pictured above. A gigantic snake-like beast made of water materializing out of a building. Keep with expansion.
  • The Lost World has creepy music, a spooky underground city, and dark areas. Kinda unsettling. And at the end, a mural of Perfect Chaos destroying Knuckles' entire tribe; Sonic, not knowing what it is, is flummoxed. Again, as a kid, this just unnerved me.
    • Falling off the snake can be traumatizing; as Sonic raises the water level, it eventually becomes impossible to make his way back up, leaving him to either drown or jump off into the endless abyss. And the snake is glitchy; it's all too possible to simply fall right through it as it's moving. Complaining.
  • A portion of the Lost World stage has Sonic being chased by a giant boulder a la Indiana Jones. Yeah, so? Remove.
  • The flashbacks to the past that Tikal takes all of the playable characters on reveal the dark backstory to the reason Chaos exists, and why Knuckles is the last of his tribe. In his tribe, a girl named Tikal befriends the Chao. Her militaristic father, Pachacamac, wants to take the Chaos Emeralds for himself and has no problems with slaughtering all of the Chao along the way; he doesn't even hesitate to throw back his own daughter. This naturally triggers Chaos' Berserk Button and he destroys the entire tribe, and to stop him from destroying the entire world, Tikal has to seal Chaos and her own soul inside the Master Emerald. Not sure about this one.
  • During Sonic's boss battle with the Egg Viper, if you succeed Dr. Eggman will try to kill you one last time — by crashing his collapsing Egg Viper onto the remaining platforms you're standing on. Worst if they're the only platform left standing. Then you'll plummet below with the mad doctor. The fact that Dr. Eggman would go as far as to try to commit murder-suicide in a kids game makes things even more unnerving. Overexaggerating. Remove.
    Tikal: (to Sonic during battle) Watch out! He's on to something!
  • This game's Eggman is portrayed in a considerably darker light than he was in earlier games. His plan is to team up with an ancient, civilization-destroying Eldritch Abomination to destroy a city so that he can build his own on its ruins. Remove.
  • What's Eggman's Plan "B" after Chaos is apparently defeated? Blow up Station Square with a missile! Oh, and it's suggested it might be a nuclear missile. The threat of annihilation by a weapon of mass destruction that actually exists only makes this game's version of Eggman scarier. Remove, nothing actually happens.
    • The frantic music that plays during the first half of this scene coupled with the red light from the sunset makes the whole thing even scarier.
  • Eggman's "You fool. Away, before I make mincemeat out of you..." line. It's supported by the exhausted way in which he realizes that Tails beat him to the missile, and then he threatens to make them all pay for this before he summons the Egg Walker — this is one of those few times the Eggman makes a genuinely threatening line. His low voice and the lack of music doesn't help either. Remove, nothing actually happens to Station Square or Tails.
    Dr. Eggman: (to Tails) So you beat me to the missile, you little pest! I will make you all pay for this (transforms into the Egg Walker) You fool! Away! Before I make mincemeat out of you!
  • Amy's entire story, involving her being endlessly chased by a persistent robot called ZERO. It never stops following her. The worst part is that certain times, ZERO seems to disappear, only to crash through a wall and continue chasing you. As Tikal puts it in her calm, emotionless voice, "The robot that was following you is closing in on you. It'll be over if that robot catches you." Nothing especially scary happens if you get caught, and this is mostly just Paranoia Fuel.
    • Amy's Twinkle Park. It starts out just fine, outside in Pleasure Castle's amusement park with the cheerful ride music playing. Then, unlike any other character who visits the level, Amy unlocks the castle's main doors and gets to go inside. It quickly becomes clear that something is very wrong with the rooms inside. And the best part? ZERO. Still following you. This did creep me out as a kid, but not nightmare-inducing.
    • In Hot Shelter, one part involves Amy collecting colored cubes to fit in slots that will supposedly do something. The area has video monitors all around it that all display static. Once the last cube is placed, the screens go silent, then cut to shots of ZERO threatening you... cue the real ZERO smashing through the screens and blasting you. You escape the room through the hole it made. I actually really like this scene. I never found it scary.
  • The Limestone cave level has yet another example of spooky music. The area itself inspires some acrophobia, especially as slipping just a little off the precarious ledges can send Sonic plummeting all the way to the bottom. Not scary.
  • One NPC in the Mystic Ruins implies that his friend never found a way out of the maze-like jungle. Fridge.
  • The Continue music, aptly called "Will You Continue?". It's like you're in a between-life-and-death limbo. Expand, but yeah, this does make me uneasy and I've heard of it scaring people.
  • The depiction of Station Square after Perfect Chaos goes on a rampage in the Final Story is legitimately horrifying in a real sense, and it may even remind you of recent tsunamis and floods in various places, like New Orleans, New Jersey, and Tokyo. Useless Harsher in Hindsight.
  • Chaos, in general. Especially when Knuckles is alone on the soon-to-crash Egg Carrier with Chaos 6. ZCE.
  • If you exploit a glitch that allows Knuckles to reach Sky Deck through the Egg Carrier's swimming pool, you'll enter his flackback with Tikal as normal, but there will be no dialog whatsoever. Even when you reach the area where the emerald shrine is on fire and Tikal and the Chao are laying on the ground, no cutscene plays, making it seem as though they're all dead. The kicker? You're stuck here forever. If you quit the game and return to Knuckles' adventure, he'll still be there with nothing to do but watch the shrine burn endlessly. The only way to fix it is to start a completely new file. Fridge, glitch-based.
  • E-102 Gamma accidentally walking into the room with his "brother" E-101 Beta being rebuilt into his Mk II form. The scene is implied to be very traumatic and scarring for Gamma to see, especially since what is happening to Beta is implied to be the robot's equivalent of being horrifically mutilated and dissected as a science experiment. No wonder it plays a role in Gamma's eventual Heel–Face Turn against his master. Not especially scary since he's just a robot.
    Sonic Adventure 2 
  • Gerald Robotnik's speech in the Last Story. With the voices set to Japanese, he talks in a Creepy Monotone. In English, he sounds like he's going even more insane. Expand and keep, this game is dark.
    • This is culminated with a military official asking if he has anything else to say. He replies he has nothing more, at which point the soldier orders his men to prepare themselves. The video cuts off just prior to what is blatantly Gerald's execution.
      Gerald Robotnik: ...I plan to give you a taste of my revenge, once all the seven Chaos Emeralds are collected. Once I initiate this program, it cannot be disabled. All of you ungrateful humans who took everything away from me, will feel my loss, and despair!
      GUN Officer: Is there anything else you want to say?
      Gerald Robotnik: No...
      GUN Officer: Ready! (Tape rewinds to the beginning)
    • The image of Gerald Robotnik tied in chains, facing the camera and about to face an execution squad in the video that's sent out to the entire world creeped a lot of kids out back in the day. It was just something you never thought you would see in a Sonic game.
    • Gerald's diary isn't a basket of roses either, describing his descent into madness from his grief over losing Maria. First he seems confused and sad, then scared, a vicious, hateful growl, and finally when outlining his intentions for Shadow, he seems eerily calm, almost cheerful in his annunciations, as if giddy in his belief that his actions will lead to the end of the world-
      Prof. Gerald: Based on my original projections, I completed my project, Shadow... I designed its mind to be perfect, pure. I will leave everything to him! If you wish, release and awaken it... TO THE WORLD!
      Rouge: (finishes reading the entry) ...if you wish to fill the world with destruction.
  • The trailer for the Last Story. It's gonna be the end of the page if you don't fix the ZCE.
    Rouge: The end of the world...
  • The scene with Eggman's demonstration of the Eclipse Cannon was full of this. Arguably, the scariest part wasn't watching the laser pass close by the skyscrapers and blowing a large chunk out of the moon, but the timer seen at the end as Eggman laughs. Yikes, sinkholes!
  • The boos from Pumpkin Hill and other haunted stages have frightened some players of the game. They have creepy yellow eyes, sharp-toothed Slasher Smiles, and they will pop up unexpectedly at the character, in which the character screams while falling on the ground for a second before getting back up. (Unintentionally, it would seem as if the ghosts are looking directly at the player whenever they pop up.) The boos will pop up from walls, on the ground, various objects, and even in their smaller forms. Players have admitted they were so scared of the ghosts that they would either quit playing the game or have one of their friends or siblings play the haunted levels for them. I have heard of people being scared by this.
    • In the Aquatic Mine stage, there is a section called "The Ghost Room" which can be seen by looking at the "CAUTION" sign to your right at the starting point of the stage. The room is infested with boos jump scaring you every few seconds. There's a reason why the mine was abandoned for so long and why caution signs were placed. It also doesn't help that a Master Emerald piece is sometimes either seen or hidden in this area, which can give those who are quite very fearful of either ghosts or jump scares a very hard time to progress through the game itself.
    • From the Death Chamber stage (and the Hard Mode versions of other haunted levels) are The Boom Boos, the big ghosts with black eyes that blinks a few seconds and stitched-up mouths. While it only takes 3 hits to kill them in which they shorten in size, hitting them once will turn them into larger-scale versions of the yellow-eyed, sharp-teethed boos as mentioned above, making them just as creepy as the jump scare boos.
    • There's King Boom Boo, the ghosts' leader, who even scares Knuckles. Also, when it chases you during the boss battle, it tries to eat you and it's even more unsettling when it gets closer to the screen. The battle's music is also chilling with its "Psycho" Strings... and if you listen closely, right at the beginning, you can hear a voice whisper "Who's there?" *Very* unsettling.
  • The Pumpkin Hill stage. Along with the ghosts, the area is surrounded by mountains with creepy pumpkin faces, skulls that blow out fire from their mouths, and there are ghosts trains that go around in circles and you can't destroy them, but you will take damage if you touch them. Not scary.
  • Eggman's threats if you take too long on Crazy Gadget are surprisingly harsh, and he holds a gun to Amy's head in the cutscene following the level. But nothing ever happens to Amy.
    Eggman: You're too slow! Sonic, if you don't come here, she will die!
  • Sonic comes the closest to death he's ever been when Eggman traps him in a self-destructing capsule. If you play the Dark Story first, there is no indication that he survived. Yeah, but in the actual story, he does survive.
    • Eggman's recap on the following boss fight is even worse. During the scene proper, his final words for the hedgehog convey solemn, begrudging respect. However, his recap shows that internally, he's reveling every second of it all:
    Eggman: Hahahahahaha! I finally did it! I've defeated Sonic! That annoying hedgehog is now gone forever! He's nothing but floating chunks in space now!
  • Egg Quarters. Not because of the ghosts, but because of those floating Scarab Beetle robots. You never know where they are unless one of them is in the same room as you, and turning a corner to suddenly see one in your face can be quite scary- particularly since you can't destroy them, they produce a creepy beeping noise when they spot you, and if you don't get away from them ASAP, they'll summon four holograms of themselves that shoot unavoidable laser beams at you. Keep, I've heard of this being scary.
  • Rouge, who's implicitly too tired to fly after her battle with Knuckles, slips on a support beam above a pit of molten metal and nearly falls to her death. Thankfully, Knuckles swoops down and saves her life in the nick of time. Yeah, so she's fine. Also, Rouge can fly anyways.
  • The Last Story's scenario where Sonic and Knuckles (and eventually Shadow) make their way over to the Eclipse Cannon's core to stop the ARK from colliding with Earth.....the core itself has some sort of multi-tiered filter above a make-shift-Master-Emerald Shrine.....and YOU SEE THE THING LITERALLY BEAT LIKE A HEART. ALL CAPS ARE BAD.
    • The scene where the Biolizard emerges and suddenly roars at the camera can be a Jump Scare moment too. Not really.
    • Also on that end, the Biolizard (the Ultimate Life Form Prototype) appears out of nowhere to try and stop them, and there were entries in Gerald's records hinting that it was sealed within the core for being far too difficult to handle and/or dangerous for quite a long 50 years ever since Project Shadow's conception....it doesn't help that during the fight with it vs. Shadow, one of the water streams on the arena can wash the latter away into a bottomless pit if not jumped out of quickly enough. Eh, remove.
    • The Biolizard itself is also the Eldritch Abomination of the game. It's a gross feral lizard whose own strength forces it to be in constant pain, so much that it has to have life support fused to its body. Despite being only an animal, it still feels hate as an instinct, will kill anything that invades the ARK core and is hellbent on crashing Space Colony ARK into the Earth at the cost of its own body. Its theme music is also full of screams and eerie tones akin to a haunted house. Oh yeah, and did we mention it's also on life support? Which also happens to be its weak spot in the first battle? Geez, this natter is insane.
    • The second and true final battle with its next form, the Finalhazard (when it fuses itself with the ARK's Eclipse Cannon to literally drag it towards the earth). If you happen to delay on that battle for long enough - specificially, three minutes or more, - the timed mission nature of it will show the screen turning slowly red and Finalhazard starting to get bathed in the re-entry flames....meaning the ARK at that time is getting very dangerously close to Earth....
    • After the fourth minute of fight passes, Sonic and Shadow start to get engulfged in re-entry flames too...
  • There's something creepy about the gigantic GUN Military Truck chasing you in City Escape. Up until then, Sonic was dealing with bog-standard combat 'bots; then out of nowhere comes this massive truck that plows through dozens upon dozens of civilian cars with ease. It makes new players wonder: if this is what they're willing to deploy to capture a single fugitive, what kind of threat are you really up against, and what else will GUN do? Fridge Horror.
  • One of the first things you see when turning on the game, on a pitch-black background with no music or stylized text, is a seizure warning, which is off-putting considering the game itself's generally lighthearted nature. Eh, it's just a normal warning. The greatness of Live and Learn playing after this will definitely make you feel better anyways.

Apr 6th 2020 at 10:34:03 PM

[up] I have a few disagreements with you analysis. Let me start by saying threats alone can qualify for NF.

Complete Monster quotes cleanup
WarJay77 Some like it hot from The Void Relationship Status: Armed with the Power of Love
Some like it hot
Apr 6th 2020 at 11:10:53 PM

It depends, obviously. Technically anything can be NF, it depends on how the work presents it.

Wick Check Project Official Sandbox (TM)
Apr 7th 2020 at 12:07:46 PM

The point here is that it's highlighting certain "dark" moments as if something bad actually happens from them. If it's just an intense moment and everything is fine afterwards, is it really NF?

Edited by Grotadmorv on Apr 7th 2020 at 12:10:51 PM


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