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Which is scarier: Horror with monsters and gore or psychological thrillers?

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With Halloween approaching, I'm in the mood for some creepy books. I was just wondering if those of you who like the scary stuff prefer those with monsters with vivid descriptions or those that make you afraid of the unknown. For me I'm more scared of something that is just lurking around without knowing what it looks like... or what it even is. And that's why I get more thrill from those types of books even though I still do enjoy those with creepy monsters. What about you?

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Well it really depends on the story. Some monster movies and books are pretty scary even without the gore. I think it depends on the atmosphere and overall mood setting the writer does.

Some psychological thrillers are pretty weak because of poor setting and just overall ridiculousness. But I think it would be a mixture of both. Grotesque imagery and a mind shattering psychological attack, in that case I would recommend you reading "The Exorcist". It's a really great horror novel.

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I think it depends on how he story is told really. I think the goofiest monster could be terrifying if it's done right. But for me I think psychological thrillers are far more terrifying than that off monsters. Because monsters you can fight, there's a chance that you can win but when it comes to the psyche and sick mind there's not much more you can do about it, it's just pure dread.

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Psychological thrillers make for the best horror experience for me. I never really found gory films all that scary. It is scary to see a killer chase the victim, but I think it's way scarier if you don't even know who or what is chasing you. I find the unseen a lot more unsettling than the visible, but I suppose slasher movies have their merits as well.

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I'm definitely not afraid of monster movies, maybe as a child but not anymore. What scares me is horror movies in which the victims are pounced upon and have to endure agony. I'm also not a fan of ghost movies, too spooky.

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I think it depends on how he story is told really. I think the goofiest monster could be terrifying if it's done right. But for me I think psychological thrillers are far more terrifying than that off monsters. Because monsters you can fight, there's a chance that you can win but when it comes to the psyche and sick mind there's not much more you can do about it, it's just pure dread.

That is so true. There's just something about what we can't fight that is so terrifying. I enjoy feeling like it could happen to me when I'm reading a psychological thriller. As opposed to reading scary monster books where I can brush off a monster as being unrealistic. ;)

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I don't know if I can categorize it with "monsters and gore" but I always get scared the most by horror with supernatural beings -- like ghosts or apparitions.  Maybe because I feel that this can happen in real life whereas with monsters, it's just pure fantasy.  Psychlogical thrillers are cool, but I find them more mind-bending rather than scary.

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for me, it depends on the medium. if it's movies, i'm more scared with horror flicks. i normally will have difficult time sleeping after watching movies with monsters and the gore alongside it. interestingly if i'm just reading about it, i could also just easily shrug the monsters off as fiction and imaginary. while psychological thrillers scare me, the level of fright is different when just watching it. if i'm watching it, i'm not as scared as when i'm reading it. curiously, even if i'm super scared while reading the thriller, i can't seem to put the book down and i won't have problems sleeping after reading it.

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Psychological thrillers can definitely keep you on the edge if done well, but I don't find them scary at all. I find really scary horror with monsters or ghosts, of course, if the writer manages to do a good job. If he or she does it, then I'll surely get really scared! It's all about the atmosphere and the unexpected things.

The idea of having a ghost after an entire family is scary to me, but for some reason murders don't have the same effect on me, at least not in books ;)

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I guess I stopped being afraid of monsters when I grew up. I also like the unknown and the unexpected that make my hair stand on end. I enjoy the thrill of fear so I will also pick psychological thrillers over monsters. I wish that the innocence that kids have remained into adulthood. I used to be so afraid of monsters. My grandfather used to tell me stories about them.

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Why put an "or" in there? Some of my favorite shows and books involving monsters are also a very psychological romp through the thriller portion of the show. A good example of this if you like anime is "Parayste - The Maxim" about parasites who come down from the sky and burrow into humans, taking them over. They coexist with us and feed on us like livestock. It makes you think, and you experience the gamut of the feeling spectrum.

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Why put an "or" in there? Some of my favorite shows and books involving monsters are also a very psychological romp through the thriller portion of the show. A good example of this if you like anime is "Parayste - The Maxim" about parasites who come down from the sky and burrow into humans, taking them over. They coexist with us and feed on us like livestock. It makes you think, and you experience the gamut of the feeling spectrum.

You have a point! A mix of both is perfect! That anime sounds interesting! I think I'll have to look for it. Does it have a manga version by any chance? I usually prefer reading than watching horror because reading horror stories is much scarier for me.

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I don't really get scared of horror films anymore ever since I became an adult, but I noticed that I do get scared if the story was realistic and can happen in real life as compared to fictional based stories. So I think I would be more inclined to be scared of the unknown because it makes you think what exactly is that scary creature, since it is not really described.

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I have always had a thing for psychological thrillers with unpredictable twists and turns. I really think those kinds of storylines are pretty interesting, and not to mention, mind-boggling. I love being surprised at the end of a book experience that would somehow leave me speechless.

You may want to read Whispers and Lies by Joy Fielding. It's a masterpiece.

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Generally I think horror movies with monsters and gore are far more terrifying than psychological thrillers. The reason is because those horror movie monsters and gore are designed with one intention: to scare you. And these movies tend to rely quite heavily on jump scares, and as cheap as that is, you've got to admit that it's still pretty terrifying.

Generally speaking, psychological thrillers are aimed more towards the characters in the movies, and not you. They can be quite terrifying when you watch it, but it doesn't exactly scare you. Though, generally these kind of movies have a longer lasting impact on your mind - so there's that.

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Psychological thrillers, for sure! While monsters and gore get me scared in the cinema, I can get over the trauma within a few days. Psychological thrillers are the type that stay with you though, especially when the killers are just ordinary people driven to insanity. It really makes you scared, knowing that any other guy on the street could be a psycho murderer. I'm getting chills just thinking about it.

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I find psychological horror way more scary! I think it is because it is not some unbelievable monster that you know you will never see. It's something that you can relate to more, because it seems so real. Books about serial killers, or people going insane are the scariest kind of books to me. It is the same for movies. Zombie movies or monster movies don't scare me because they seem so fake. 

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I like watching movies that have psychological thrillers. I think it is harder for me to get scared by monsters and gore because I know that it is all makeup and effects. Psychological thrillers on the other hand, are things that I get worked up myself and it is all in my mind.

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Hands down, psychological thrillers are far scarier than horror movies with silly, disfigured monsters. What's scary about psychological thrillers is that psycho killers are twisted and they usually torture their victims first before going for the kill. Monster-filled horror stories, on one hand, are so easy to read. You already know what to expect from them. In most cases, they're open-ended and don't have a solid plot. Psycho thrillers offer more background story and even provide details about the psycho killer's past and why he turned out that way. The cat-and-mouse chase adds to the thrill.

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I think they elicit different but closely related responses from me. Like a different vein of "scared-ness" if there was such a word. Thrillers are exciting to watch because they keep you on your toes. It's the anticipation of not knowing what happens that make them great. Horror with monsters/gore on the other hand, you know what is there physically and usually they are just meant to surprise you. Or overwhelm you with the imagery. I personally prefer thrillers as they make me think more.

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Psychological thrillers would be my first choice, but the combination of both will definitely pack more punch.

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