"When a knife is thrown at Rick, what does he do? FUCKING PUNCHES IT, that's what! When's the last time you punched a knife -- fist-to-blade -- and the knife lost? Yeah, that's never happened, 'cause you ain't as badass as Rick! Rick will fuck you up!"
Splatterhouse is a series of Beat'Em Up games from Namco Bandai; players control protagonist Rick Taylor as he fights against diabolical supernatural forces in a struggle to save the woman he loves (and, in Splatterhouse 3, his son). His constant companion throughout this freak show of demented demons is the Terror Mask, an ancient artifact which confers great and terrible powers upon its bearer, but seems to have a mind of its own...
The first Splatterhouse was originally an arcade game; in the United States, its graphic violence sparked a media frenzy from Moral Guardians, which got it swiftly pulled from arcades. It was later released on the TurboGrafx-16, although its American release was Bowdlerised. (Later games did not get such treatment, since they were console-only games.) The relative obscurity of Splatterhouse at the time of its arcade release spared the port and its sequels from many a Moral Guardian's crosshairs during the Mortal Kombat/Night Trap moral panic of the early 1990s.
The first two Splatterhouse games were 2D side-scrolling Kung-Fu Master-style games where Rick could splatter most enemies in one hit, but only survive a few hits himself. Splatterhouse 3 was a noticeable departure: it was a Streets of Rage-style Beat'Em Up with a non-linear exploration element (almost every stage had players navigate a maze of rooms to reach a boss battle).
Besides the main series, there was also a bizarre and wacky prequel on the Famicom -- Splatterhouse: Wanpaku (or "Naughty") Graffiti -- where all of the game's characters were Super-Deformed and numerous horror films (and their associated tropes) were parodied.
The series sat dormant after Splatterhouse 3, leaving fans clamoring for a new game until 2010 -- when Namco Bandai delivered with Splatterhouse (released for the PlayStation 3 and the XBox 360). This remake/reimagining of the first game is essentially a modern-day version of its 16-bit predecessors, with all that description entails (one example: if Rick takes a lot of damage, he'll lose massive amounts of skin and body parts until he can heal). Namco Bandai also included the entire original trilogy (including the uncut arcade version of the first game), essentially giving fans a Splatterhouse collection on a single disc.
UNTAGGED PLOT SPOILERS FOLLOW. Be warned.
- Splatterhouse ~ During a nasty storm, "parapsychology" students Rick Taylor and Jennifer Wills take refuge in West Mansion, known to locals as "the Splatterhouse" due to rumors of insane experiments carried out by the mansion's owner, renowned -- and missing -- researcher Dr. West. Once inside, Jennifer is kidnapped by a group of demons, while Rick is attacked and left for dead. When Rick awakens in the mansion dungeon, he is wearing the "Terror Mask", a Mayan artifact discovered by West which is capable of sentient thought. The Mask has fused itself to Rick, giving him superhuman strength while encouraging him to explore the mansion to find Jennifer. Rick kills pretty much anything (emphasis on thing) in his path as he climbs to the mansion's upper floors. When he finds Jennifer, Rick is horrified to see her transforms into a monster -- and since it's a "kill or be killed" situation, Rick is forced to kill the monster to stay alive. An enraged Rick soon discovers that the mansion itself is alive, and after he destroys its "womb", it "dies" and is set ablaze. After escaping the mansion, Rick kills the final creature blocking his way (in the graveyard outside of the mansion), the Terror Mask explodes, and Rick returns to normal.
- Splatterhouse 2 ~ Three months later, nightmares of the Splatterhouse -- and Jennifer -- still haunt Rick. It's during one of these nightmares that Rick hears the Terror Mask's voice again; it tells him Jennifer's soul lives on, and if Rick can save her soul, he can bring her back to life. Rick reluctantly returns to West Mansion and puts the (reformed) Terror Mask on again, then travels through the ruins of West Mansion to discover a way to a secluded mansion belonging to West's research partner, Dr. Mueller. Mueller's mansion contains a portal into Hell itself, which is where Jennifer's soul is being held by a demonic force known as The Evil One. Rick enters this portal, fights back Hell itself to save Jennifer's soul, then leaves Hell with Jennifer in his arms and The Evil One chasing him. Rick manages to outrun The Evil One, fight off other pursuing abominations, and lay the Terror Mask to rest once more.
- Splatterhouse 3 ~ Five years later, Rick is a successful Wall Street tycoon and lives in a mansion in Connecticut with Jennifer and their son David. David has latent psychic abilities, however, and The Evil One plans to use them to unlock the power of the Dark Stone, an artifact which will open a portal between Hell and Earth large enough for an army of demons to come through and overrun Earth. The Terror Mask senses The Evil One's power as it overtakes Rick's mansion, and with both David and Jennifer in peril, it convinces Rick to fight The Evil One's hordes once more. Jennifer and David's fates are determined by how fast a player finishes levels, although the game ends the same way regardless of their fates: Rick encounters (and destroys) The Evil One, only to discover that this was all a ruse by the Terror Mask, which usurps The Evil One's position and attempts to use the Dark Stone. Rick eventually defeats the Terror Mask once and for all in the game's final battle.
- Splatterhouse (2010) ~ Rick and Jennifer are students of infamous "parabiologist" Dr. Henry West; after arriving to his mansion to interview him, West sends creatures (who serve The Corrupted) to kidnap Jennifer and kill Rick. Rick is fatally wounded, but in the ensuing chaos, the Terror Mask falls out of an ancient sarcophagus, where it comes into contact with Rick's blood. Awakened by his blood, the mask tells Rick that it can heal him and help him get Jennifer back. A dying Rick reluctantly puts the artifact on -- and is transformed into a hulking beast of a man. The Mask has a surprise for Rick, however: until Jennifer is saved, it's not coming off. Rick's path of destruction leads him through West's mansion and beyond as he fights The Corrupted's servants in all their twisted, disgusting forms before West can bring The Corrupted to Earth. Portals take Rick through time and space, revealing things that might happen should West succeed and things that have already been (thanks to a Stable Time Loop), before finally bringing him to where the "good" doctor's ready to bring The Corrupted out to play...
The Happy Video Game Nerd, who is a huge fan of the series, reviewed the original trilogy (a review which was done before the announcement of the 2010 game) and the 2010 game; in preparation for the latter, he also did a comparison of the first game's arcade release and home port. Splatterhouse fansite "The West Mansion" has a load of information about the entire series and a collection of fan creations; after the 2010 game flopped both critically and financially, however, the site transitioned into being an archive "until further notice".
- Advancing Wall of Doom: As the original game began life in the arcades, all levels in it contain a device to keep players from stalling, in the form of a slow-moving wall of glowing, rippling purple something that pursues you until you reach the boss. The console-exclusive Splatterhouse 2 does this twice; once by having the Kraken chase you across a collapsing bridge, and once as you're escaping Hell by having a giant glowing creature - which is possibly the Evil One - pursue you while shooting energy balls at you.
- A couple of the side-scrolling segments in the 2010 game have some form of this as well.
- Alien Blood: Demon Blood in this case - While plain ol' red is pretty prevalent as well, quite a few of the enemies have blood of various other colors. Strangely enough, it seems that backgrounds in all three games are allowed to be as red as possible, but blood from enemies has to be another color if it's freshly spilled (such as a low-level mook in part 3 with bloody red stumps where its head and hands should be, but still bleeds green). Even then, it's not a strictly enforced rule, as a boss in part 2 explodes into a crimson spray that even runs down the screen.
- Amplifier Artifact: The Terror Mask.
- Another Dimension: The Void.
- Anti-Villain: Dr. West in the remake, although this mostly applied to him before Rick killed his (demonic) wife, fulfilling a Stable Time Loop.
- Artifact of Doom: The Terror Mask.
- Ascended Extra: Dr. West was the one who kidnapped Jennifer in the game that started the franchise, but never actually appeared on-screen. He appears in full in the remake, with a fairly fleshed out backstory.
- As Long as There Is Evil: The Terror Mask invokes this in the bad endings to the third game.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Hell Chaos, the last boss of the first game. His head alone is as tall as Rick. The rest of his unseen, rotten body is underground.
- The Remake gives us Golem, an enormous tentacled beast grown from a doll full of tentacles that armors itself into a humanoid shape using furniture from throughout the house.
- The giant Boreworms are really giant this time.
- The final boss, The Corrupted, is a massive, vaguely humanoid beast composed of ten thousand corpses supplied by your rampage against the monsters of the game. It isn't nearly as intimidating as it sounds.
- Ax Crazy: The Terror Mask in the remake. He keeps urging Rick to kill more stuff.
- Which, believe it or not, makes him better than his original trilogy persona; the few lines the mask spoke in the classic games imply that it is a very cold and cunning being; while the new personality seems to be interested in only killing other demons and just having "fun" with a little bit of a revenge quest snuck in, the old one wanted to outright kill every being in its path for world domination, Jennifer, David and even Rick himself included.
- Badass Boast: The Terror Mask gets one in the opening of the remake after Rick asks what it is.
The Terror Mask: Let's just say I'm God. Your God. Well, at least the only one who's listening right now.
- A subtle, but present, example at the start of the second game:
The Terror Mask: Rick... she doesn't have to die. You can still save her. Only I can give you that power. Rick... you need me.
- Bad Future: One of the places you travel to in the remake, New York City, thirteen months after failing to save Jennifer, the Corrupted have basically ended everything.
- Battle in the Center of the Mind: The final battle against the Terror Mask in the third game.
- Better to Die Than Be Killed: Before the 1st boss fight in 2, three monsters choose being torn apart by the boss rather than face Rick.
- Blind Idiot Translation: The name "Biggy Man" is actually meant to be "Piggy Man", which is the actual romanized spelling used in the PC Engine version's manual (as well as in the official soundtrack). In an early strategy guide for the TG16 version for the first game, Piggy Man's name was mistranslated "Biggy Man" and this mistake was propagated by fansites, eventually making its way into the American-developed 2010 version.
- Blood Knight: The Terror Mask. Established in the remake, as according the original trilogy's very few dialogues and manuals, the mask is very clear on its primary goals and doesn't seem to crave fighting and killing as much as it does in the remake.
- Bloody Hilarious: The remake.
- Body Horror: It's hard to find a series with more Body Horror than this one. In fact, it's hard to find a single frame of a Splatterhouse game that doesn't have some kind of Body Horror in it.
- There is the scene with Rick kneeling in front of an altar in the first game. But that's about it. Really, these games are sick.
- Boss in Mooks Clothing: In some areas of the remake, you'll find a single, apparently ordinary mook all alone. For some reason, it can kill you with one Deadly Lunge if you're not careful enough, even at full health.
- Bowdlerization: Believe it or not, the 2010 game got a small bit of this - instead of the game's easy difficulty being called "Pussy", Namco higher-ups made them change it because they felt it would be insulting to gamers. It was changed to "Coward". It's particularly odd because this is a game in which the Terror Mask constantly berates your character's reluctance or fear with lines like "I'm sorry, did your vagina say something just now?"
- Breakable Weapons: Especially in the remake. Justified, as Rick is swinging said weapons with unearthly power. Furthermore if they weren't breakable they'd be a Game Breaker.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: The Terror Mask in the remake is fond of doing this.
"See, that's the kind of shit that got us an M-rating."
- Call Back: The remake is made for the fans, and crams a mind numbing amount of these into it, in fact it could even have its own page. Here is just a few:
- To the intro of Splatterhouse 2:
"She doesn't have to die..."
- The same line also serves as a callback within the 2010 game itself, as the Terror Mask says this to Rick before he puts it on; later on, we hear Dr. West saying he heard a voice say the same thing to him after his wife died.
- When the Terror Mask tells Rick of his time on earth before West (see the Noble Demon entry below), Rick is the one who identifies the people the Mask met and protected as Aztecs. The Terror Mask will say that he always thought they were Mayans, who were said to have created the Mask in the first game.
- Early stages of the game have furniture flying at you magically, not unlike the second boss of the first game. The boss of the second level starts out similarly, before using the contents of the room to become a colossal Golem of furniture and tentacles.
- In the past, you attempt to save Jennifer (who is actually the identical Leonora) from being burnt like a witch. Just as you reach her, she turns into a monster and attacks you.
- Not only does Mirror Rick make a return, but now he has a red mask like in the Turbographics version.
- The Boreworms make an appearance, but are now nothing but tiny little things that you casually squish for extra blood, possibly in reference to Rick's visibly larger size. The Giant Boreworm also shows up. He's grown a lot since last we saw him.
- Rick's default form resembles Mutant Rick from 3.
- Ultimate Evil has a cameo as the Heart of the Corrupted.
- Chainsaw Good: For Rick in Splatterhouse 2; it's also the best weapon in the remake (next to the shotgun).
- Chainsaw Not-So-Good: The infamous boss Piggy Man from the first game had chainsaws where his hands should be.
- Cluster F-Bomb: Rick and the Terror Mask in the remake.
- Creepy Cool Crosses: A boss in the first game is a floating inverted cross. This was replaced with a more generic-looking floating monster head in the American TurboGrafx-16 release.
- Deadpan Snarker: The new version of the Terror Mask.
- Degraded Boss: The Teratoid in the remake.
- Determinator: Monsters kidnap Jennifer. Rick kills all the monsters. Jennifer turns into a monster and must be killed. Rick goes to hell and gets her back. Eldritch horrors invade Rick's mansion and attack his family. Whether he saves them or not, there is going to be hell to pay.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Pretty much all you do throughout all of the games. Sometimes you also smash Cthulhu up with 2x4s.
- Direct-to-Genesis: Even though the first game was originally a coin-op release, the sequels were made for the Sega Genesis with no prior arcade version.
- Downer Ending: The first game, and all but one ending to the third.
Rick: Alone. All alone...
- Early-Bird Cameo: After you defeat Head Snake, the keeper of the gate to the Void in 2, you see a huge, red mass being expelled from the passage. It's the Ultimate Evil, and you fight it as the final boss later.
- Eldritch Abomination: Pretty much everything, to some degree. The House itself, and some of the monsters from the second game counts.
- Elite Mooks: Many enemies have a stronger counterpart, namely the Teratoid and Abhore have the Demon Teratoid and the Demon Abhore.
- Embedded Precursor: The 2010 revival has the original trilogy of Splatterhouse games as unlockable bonuses.
- Evil Feels Good: The Terror Mask in the remake is constantly trying to get Rick to admit he loves the power and strength it gives him.
- Everybody Lives/Everybody Dies: The best and worst endings of the third game.
- Everything Trying to Kill You: Aside from the ordinary hellish creatures from Another Dimension, things that attempt to kill Rick include random wildlife, furniture, household tools, his own reflection, his girlfriend/wife-to-be, and his son's teddy bear.
- Evil Is Visceral: Pretty much everything in this game series.
- Exact Words: The Terror Mask's deal in the remake is that he won't get off of Rick's face until Jen is safe in his arms. He doesn't come off, because it's not Jen in her body...
- Eye Scream: One of the monsters in the Remake is a colossal eye (complete with eyelids) blocking your way. You must defeat it and rip it out in order to pass.
- Fan Service: In the 2010 remake, one of the collectable items is pictures of Jennifer either dressed, half dressed or just plain naked. (Link NSFW)
- Fourth Wall Observer: The Terror Mask in the remake seems to be very aware of the fact that it is in a video game.
- In one of its dialogues with Rick, it tells him that he's been a killer "in other games".
- Gainax Ending: In Wanpaku Graffiti.
- Good Thing You Can Heal: The Mask in the remake has an amazing healing power. Pretty much required, as some injuries will leave you with missing chunks of flesh, exposed bones and missing arms.
- "Growing Muscles" Sequence: Rick goes through a pretty gruesome one as soon as he wears the Terror Mask in the beginning of Splatterhouse's updated version.
- Hockey Mask and Chainsaw: Rick wears a hockey mask and can sometimes use a chainsaw. In sequels, the mask was redesigned to look more like a skull, but the similarities to Jason's signature mask were still pretty apparent.
- Hollywood Nerd: Pre-Terror Mask Rick in the remake. Even after putting the mask on, he still keeps his dweeby-sounding voice.
- I'm a Humanitarian: "The Children consume human flesh with much relish. I tried it once. It was not to my taste."
- Jump Scare: In the remake: during the fourth level, the game suddenly flashes images of a deformed Jennifer head saying "Rick, save me."
- The initial screen of the remake is a Jump Scare.
- Lampshade Hanging: Terror Mask acknowledges how gruesome some of the things he has Rick do to the Corrupted are.
- Large Ham: In the 2010 game, the leering Dr. West is even more rubber-faced than Jim Carrey.
- The Terror Mask himself is exceptionally hammy, not surprising seeing as how it's voiced by the prolifically hammy Jim Cummings.
For a Dick, you sure are a pussy!
- Last Ditch Move: Done by the second boss in the first game via Falling Chandelier of Doom. It takes away all your health hearts if it lands on you.
- The first and sixth bosses do the same with a hidden last enemy and acid blood, while Part Two has only the first boss doing this splashing you with gastric fluids.
- The Legions of Hell
- Life Energy: Inverted with Necro, which is the energy of the dead.
- Lighter and Softer: Splatterhouse: Wanpaku Graffiti.
- Love Makes You Evil: Dr West.
- Ludicrous Gibs: The various "Splatterkills" you can perform in the 2010 remake. One particularly charming one involves Rick shoving his hand up an creature's asshole and ripping out its intestines.
- Made of Plasticine: Most enemies are, to some extent. That, or the Terror Mask is just that powerful.
- Considering that the arcade version of the original game opens with Rick having to be saved from death by the Mask after he enters the mansion, the latter is likely the case.
- Made all too clear in the remake. Rick without the mask is damn near sliced in half during the attack that leaves him dying; Rick with the mask is able to rip the same enemies to shreds with his bare fists.
- Considering that the arcade version of the original game opens with Rick having to be saved from death by the Mask after he enters the mansion, the latter is likely the case.
- Mad Scientist: A boss in the second game. He chucks beakers of incendiary chemicals. (In the Western version he's Dr. Mueller, a research partner of Dr. West. In Japan, he IS Dr. West.)
- Doctor West in the remake.
- Magnetic Plot Device: Obtained from evidence from the manuals and games, it is revealed that the Terror Mask is the one thing responsible for summoning evil spirits and turning houses into massive horrifying fleshpiles. Apparently, it's a magnet for evil of all sorts. Even the Wanpaku Graffiti ending featured it coming to life, and laughing evilly while poltergeists proceeded to trash the studio.
- Mask Power
- Mirror Boss and Evil Knockoff: Both in the original and in the 2010 game, Rick must fight clones of himself generated by evil mirrors; only in the remake is the battle treated as a boss fight.
- Ms. Fanservice: Jennifer in the remake.
- Multiple Endings: In the third game, whether or not you complete certain stages before the time limit is up determines which ending you see.
- Mythology Gag: Pretty much the entire Biggy Man boss fight in the remake. Terror Mask gets the sinking feeling Rick is going to get his ass handed to him. Rick proceeds to unload on him with the shotgun until Biggy Man goes into Phase 2.
Hey, I know this guy! ...yeah, we are screwed.
- When you view the completed pictures of Jennifer in the game's menus, they have date and place labels; among the places the photos were taken are "Dark Stone Nightclub", "Mueller's Bar" and "Wanpaku Graffiti".
- Necromantic: Dr. West in the remake.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Thanks to a Stable Time Loop, Rick was the reason Dr. West made a deal with The Corrupted in the first place.
- Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: As said in this let's play: an Undead Robt Cyborg Gorilla
- Nintendo Hard: The 2010 game is pretty hard, compared to other modern beat-em-ups. The very first room past the Taste of Power opening can kill you repeatedly on normal difficulty. Opponents don't have much Mook Chivalry, Rick needs only a few hits to die, and he isn't very good at crowd-clearing.
- In an inversion of this trope, however, the "Brutal" difficulty can be much easier compared to "Savage" since you are able to bring any upgrades you have gained into a new game.
- Noble Demon: The Terror Mask tells Rick that after escaping the influence of the Corrupted, he took up the role of a protector to the ancient Aztecs, and was actually pretty good at it, and partly wants revenge on the Corrupted because they killed all the people he was protecting. When Rick doesn't believe the Terror Mask, he tells Rick that, if a good guy like Rick could do a few bad things (which he certainly has at this point), then the opposite could be true with himself.
- Much in contrast to his personality in the original trilogy, there the Terror Mask wanted the other demons dead for his goals of world domination, no revenge involved. Overall the classic Terror Mask is more of a cunning evil bastard and the new Terror Mask is a happy killer.
- Nostalgia Level: Some sections of the 2010 game are two dimensional corridors filled with enemies that you can smash into the fourth wall with your 2x4 and massive death traps, while a musical score that sounds like the ones from 80's horror flicks blares loudly.
- Off with His Head: How Rick kills many of the bosses in the remake, most notably the Giant Boreworm.
- One-Winged Angel: Rick can do this on command in the third game, gaining massive strength at the cost of draining his power.
- Also, the Terror Mask itself, in the final level.
- Rick can also do this in the 2010 game, but instead of gigantic muscles. Rick's bones grow out of his body and form blades.
- Only a Flesh Wound: In the latest version, Rick can have his right arm severed and still keep fighting. One of the creatures from the third game can even attack you with part of his skull missing.
- Painful Transformation: Rick's sudden muscle gain in the beginning of the 2010 game breaks his leg initially. Half his skin is also displaced when Terror Mask goes all out.
- The Power of Blood: Almost every door or trap in the 2010 game is powered and/or unlocked by massive doses of blood from the enemies you kill.
- You also buy moves using blood points.
- Precision F-Strike: Rick does this to Dr. West in one of the 2010 game's trailers.
- During the last phase, Rick confronts Doctor West, and after revealing his big plan for revenge against Rick (for things West accidentally set in motion himself), Rick replies "Yeah, well... fuck you." To which Doctor West shouts, "No, Rick. FUCK YOU!!!"
- Rated "M" for Manly: Especially the 2010 game.
- Recurring Boss: All the minibosses and also the Giant Boreworm, who you have to fight (and some times behead) at least four times, if not more.
- Reptiles Are Abhorrent: The new design of the Giant Boreworm, complete with fangs and a centipede-like tongue.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: The Evil One, The Corrupted and the Terror Mask.
- Sequel Hook: The 2010 game ends with Jennifer possessed by one of The Corrupted, complete with Black Eyes of Evil (too bad the poor reviews and sales will probably kill any chance of a sequel).
- Shout-Out: A third of the fun in the games is to spot all references to famous horror movies (just for starters, Friday the 13 th, Evil Dead, The Deadly Spawn and Poltergeist). The Famicom spinoff Wanpaku Graffiti went ballistic on this, including references to (and parodies of) Alien, The Fly, Thriller and many more.
- Perhaps the funniest Shout-Out are the disembodied hands giving Rick the finger, straight out of Evil Dead 2.
- One of the heads circling the "inverted cross" boss from the first game is the head of The Toxic Avenger.
- The horror movie references are visibly obvious but the oddly detailed plot came from Lovecraft before it became trendy, mixed with bits of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure part 1. Who would have guessed the Terror Mask was based on more than Jason Voorhees?
- During the final phase of the last boss fight in the second game, the boss takes on the form of a batlike creature and music suspiciously similar to "Bloody Tears" from Castlevania plays.
- In a reversal, the title character's look from Jason X may be a reference to or borrowing back from Splatterhouse 3.
- In the 2010 game:
- When Rick first obtains a shotgun, the gun's previous owner appears to be Ash Williams.
- There are plenty of references to the works of Lovecraft; in Phase Six, there is a monstrous beast in a tank towards the end of the level that looks incredibly like Cthulhu.
- Even better, listen carefully at the spells/prayers cast by West: it mentions "Chtulhu" a couple of times.
- You can find Freddie's hat, shirt and clawed glove and Chucky the doll partially hidden under a bed as well.
- One of the moves is called "Pimp Hand Strong".
- Not to mention Henry West itself, could easily be a shout out to Herbert West.
- Stable Time Loop: Sometime in the past, Dr. West witnesses a masked figure re-killing his already-dead wife Leonora and vows to make humanity pay. Moving forward a few hundred years, West kidnaps Jennifer and mortally wounds Rick, forcing him to put on the Terror Mask. Eventually, Rick will go back in time - he's the masked figure that West saw kill his wife, thus causing his Start of Darkness.
- A Taste of Power: The remake starts with The Terror Mask putting Rick in Berserk Mode and pumping him full of power. Rick can't take that much power at once, so the Mask decides that they'll need to "take it slow".
- Theme Music Power-Up: In the remake, any time Rick goes into his super form, the game picks one of a collection of metal songs to play, all with What Do You Mean It's Not Awesome? names like "Apocalyptic Havoc".
- As well, at the end of the game after dealing the final blow to the boss, Rick and Jennifer are about to be crushed. Cue a QTE to that begins the shredding chords of "Pounding Nails Into Your Coffin" as Rick single-handedly throws a skyscraper-sized giant off them, tackles it, tears its heart out, and chucks the boulder-sized heart 20 feet.
- Thirteen Is Unlucky: In the Meat Factory, there are supposedly fourteen floors, according to the elevator... But oddly, there's no 13th floor. You proceed to fight Biggy Man on the floor between the 12th and 14th.
- Timed Mission: Every level in the third game is timed, and if you mess it up, it affects your ending.
- The remake has an entire timed level, The Wicker Bride, where you must run through a garden maze before a fanatic mob of townspeople declare Lenora/Jennifer a witch and take the usual countermeasure to this kind of situation. Because of the time-traveling portals, you will repeatedly get extra time once you fight through a wave of monsters, but you'd still better book it.
- Title Drop: After Biggy Man comes back for round two in the remake.
Show him why we call it "SPLATTERHOUSE".
- Tragic Monster: Jennifer transformed into a monster is a boss you have to kill in the first game.
- "Wake-Up Call" Boss: The first boss of the 2010 game is a demon that can heal himself and others, is capable of shaking off your combos and can't be killed by anything else than a Splatterkill.
- Wolfpack Boss: The first boss of the first game is a group of overgrown leeches that attack in rapid succession from all sides.
- Womb Level: The sixth level on the first game; also a Scrappy Level, because of the millions of fetuses that continuously spawn from the walls.
- In the Remake, most of the interiors of the House in many levels are fleshy and alive. There are also the "Mouth Guardians" (gigantic living maws that you must feed with monsters), Eye Guardians (Gigantic eyes) and the nucleus of the House, which this time is a gigantic heart.
- The Worm That Walks: The Boreworm in 3 is a literal one. That means, a huge, fanged worm with legs.
- Writing Around Trademarks: In the arcade version of the first game, the Terror Mask resembles the symbolic hockey mask of Jason Voorhees; in the TurboGrafx-16 port, the mask's color is changed to red, probably to prevent a lawsuit. The sequels returned the color of the mask to white(-ish), but altered the mask's design to be more skull-like.
- As a Shout-Out to this, one of the DLC masks in the 2010 game is a red hockey mask appropriately called the "Retro Hockey Mask".
- And in case you're wondering, yeah, it's awesome.