Indie game maker Scott Cawthon started quite the phenomenon with a little game called Five Nights At Freddy's, which took the world by storm with unique gameplay mechanics, an amazing (if well-hidden) lore, terrifying characters and scares, and of course, the colorful-yet-creepy characters that want to stuff you inside an animatronic suit.
After five main entries in the series — plus one goofy spin-off — that have been nothing but great additions to the horror genre, I feel like it is time to take a look at the series and rank them from worst (cuddliest) to best (creepiest), not that any of them are actually cuddly at all!
5. 'Five Nights At Freddy's 3'
Don't get me wrong, it's not a bad game. Actually there isn't a single "FNAF" game that I think is bad — but the one that I felt was the weakest of series definitely was the third entry, which still had the scares but they weren't as terrifying as in the other games. I found myself more scared of when the animatronics like Phantom Freddy, Phantom Foxy and Springtrap would just watch me from behind a glass.
However, what it lacks in the scare factor, it makes up for with great revelations in the story (which I will not spoil for those who have not played the games) and great additions to the gameplay, such as the second monitor, which allows you to check on air ventilation, camera systems and audio devices. This second monitor can lead to some intense moments, especially when multiple systems can go out. Overall it's still a great entry in the series, but not as great as the rest.
Game Rating: 7/10
4. 'Five Nights At Freddy's'
It's the one that started it all: Five Nights At Freddy's, the story about Mike Schmidt, a man who starts work at a pizzeria as a night guard and ends up being stalked by killer animatronics for five nights. Why he always comes back is anyone's guess.
It was a truly genius idea to have a whole horror game take place from the point of view of a security guard watching a haunted place from the security cameras, which gave it a terrifying angle when you can see the thing that wants to kill you standing at the end of a hallway or staring at the lens; that, combined with the excellent sound design, gave us one of the most original games ever made. Way to go Scott!
Game Rating: 7/10
3. 'Five Nights At Freddy's 2'
When it comes to horror, sequels are a gamble: you either end up with an Alien/Aliens (good and better) situation or you end up with a Sinister/Sinister 2 (good and terrible) situation. At firs, when I saw how quick Scott Cawthon put out the second game, I suspected it to be the latter — but then I was pleasantly surprised that what we got was the former. I truly think that Five Nights At Freddy's 2 is a superior game with even more animatronics to fear, no doors to keep you safe, more pieces of the story, and it is even scarier than the first one.
Game Rating: 8/10
2. 'Five Nights At Freddy's 4'
Scott decided to switch things up this time around by having the setting be in a regular home instead of some rundown children's entertainment place or horror attraction — and instead of a security guard, you are just a small child experiencing the worst nights of his life with Five Nights At Freddy's 4. Arguably this one was the most terrifying of the games due to the fact that there are no monitors for you to see where the animatronics are coming from, so all you have to rely on are your ears to detect if an animatronic is close or not. Wow, Scott, you actually managed to surpass Five Nights At Freddy's 4 and it seemed like the perfect way to end the series too...or was it?
Game Rating: 8.5/10
1. 'Five Nights At Freddy's: Sister Location'
I was completely fine with Five Nights At Freddy's 4 being the final game in the series and I thought that Scott was going to move onto another title, but instead on October 7 he surprised up with yet another sequel titled Five Nights At Freddy's: Sister Location, which was a bit disconcerting from the trailer. All these new animatronics did not seem right but by this point, I had complete faith is Scott so I gave the game a chance and it proved to be the best game yet!
I'll immediately say that this game is certainly scary. Not as scary as Five Nights At Freddy's 4, but that is made up for with the fact that this game has the most amount of gameplay in the series. You're not just stuck in a single room for five nights; you have to move across an entire facility completing different tasks for the artificial intelligence guide while avoiding the scary-as-hell animatronics.
There is a very Portal-esque charm and humor added to this game and I like it; it doesn't feel out of place. In fact, in some places, it adds to the horror.
Will this be the last of the Five Nights At Freddy's games? I doubt it, but if Scott actually manages to make a superior game than this, then he deserves every bit of money and attention he gets even more!
Game Rating: 9/10
So that's my review of the entire franchise. I love 'em all, I cannot wait for more, and I am even more excited for the Five Nights At Freddy's movie. What are your thoughts on this franchise? Let me know in the comments below!