Death Angel was designed by Anthony Gil, and released on his website for free in 1998. It plays 2-6 players (the more players the better), and takes 60-90 minutes to play. The idea behind Death Angel is that you're on a bus that has a blow out in a farming town. As the bus driver checks the tire, he is killed by Angel, a girl with blades bolted through her fingers. This is where the game begins, and your goal is simple--survive.
Primarily the game has a simple roll-and-move mechanism; on your turn you decide if you're going to Walk (roll 1d6--that is, one six sided die, no penalties), Jog (roll 2d6 and move your choice, but don't move if you roll doubles), or Run (roll 2d6 and move the total, but if the dice are the same or equal 7, the player trips, losing this and the next turn). The game ends in one of two ways--the turn timer progresses to 5am, when the sun rises and Angel leaves, or if you manage to get the keys to the bus and drive it out of town--bet you can guess who has the keys. The ultimate goal of the game is to score points, which you get increasing amounts for each turn you survive, doing damage to Angel, and doing cool stuff, like jumping through windows. You can die, and probably will--the main penalties to this are the loss of any equipment you had, and your "turns survived" counter starts over.
Much of the game is against you--you're in a town with a few buildings, a corn field, and a lot of open space. There are a number of icons on the ground which indicate places that can be searched, hiding places, and many, many places that Angel can simply appear--when this happens, she comes for you. Combat is resolved using cards--there are several stacks of cards for each different class of weapon, and then another for Angel's attacks. Since most of your weapons are crap, like flashlights and books, sure you could get lucky and find a sword or a gun--probably not, you're usually disadvantaged. The cards themselves have some interesting text describing the attack: Die die die! Pinging with energy, you ravage Angel's beautiful face with your weapon. After a few seconds, you stop to survey the damage... you appear to have broken her concentration. Angel stabs you in the arm for the inconvenience. Lose 1d6 -2 life points.
The game does have a bit of set up--beyond the initial double-sided printing (files available by following the link above), there are a number of tokens and cards that need to be cut out, but I feel it is well worth it. Of course, I say this having played the copy Brian printed and cut out all the pieces for, but still. My main complaint is the penalty for Jogging and Running--a lot of turns you have to move fast, you know, because there's a psycho is trying to kill you. Tripping while running is the worst, it's basically a "lose two turns" penalty; if Angel is anywhere near you, this may as well be a "shove your face onto Angel's claws" penalty.
Alrighty, that's number two, and I'm very glad this game came to mind. Here's one more suggestion.
When's the last time you heard a scary story--a good scary story. If you have an iPod...or a computer even, take a glance at Pseudopod.org, a free podcast (don't worry about the terminology), and part of the Escape Artists, Incorporated organization. Every week Pseudopod puts out a free audio file of a horror story--some classics, some new stuff, in my opinion nearly all of it good, and the readers usually do a good job as well. I'll recommend a personal favorite, Scavenger, but you have to listen if you want to know what it's about.
Be safe, everyone, and enjoy your weekend. Happy Halloween!