Along with this video, I've thought a fair amount about how most horror games are just "difficult" games. They almost always boil down to the player being vulnerable in the world. In Gears for example they make the player feel strong, but in Outlast they make the player feel weak. Almost all of the horror imo boils down to player death which is dumb.
My two favorite horror games are P.T. and MGSV. Both treat horror in a completely different way. In P.T., you don't die and the game doesn't reset but it nails the horror. Every time you turn that corner, you fear the unknown. In MGSV, there are two main horror moments. The first is when you are investigating a mad science lab. It isn't a fear of Snake dying, but a fear of discovering what the experiments are for. The second and really powerful moment involves your own squadmates going insane. Avoiding spoilers, the fear is like emerging from a bunker after the apocalypse. The damage has already been done and there is nothing you can do about it.
What are your thoughts?