Enemy Zero (1996)

by Christopher
5 minutes read


Enemy Zero: A Stealth-Horror Classic

Released in 1996, Enemy Zero was a groundbreaking stealth-horror game that pushed the boundaries of the genre. Developed by Warp and published by Psygnosis, Enemy Zero was the second game to star the digital character Laura Lewis, following her debut in the 1995 game D.


Enemy Zero is a first-person perspective game that alternates between interactive FMV (full motion video) sequences and real-time exploration. The FMV sequences use gameplay identical to D, with players controlling Laura’s movements and interacting with the environment using a point-and-click interface.

The real-time exploration component of Enemy Zero is where the game truly shines. Enemies are invisible, and players must rely on sound to locate them. Different pitches indicate the distance and direction of enemies, creating a tense and atmospheric experience.

In addition to the innovative use of sound, Enemy Zero also features a unique weapon-charging mechanic. Every gun in the game must be charged up immediately before each shot, and charging a shot for too long will cause the charge to dissipate. This forces players to carefully time their shots, as beginning to charge too late or too soon will allow enemies to reach Laura, resulting in an immediate game over.


Enemy Zero follows Laura Lewis as she investigates a distress signal from a research station on Tau Ceti IV. Upon arriving, she discovers that the station has been overrun by an alien species known as the Taurans. Laura must use her wits and stealth to survive and uncover the truth behind the Tauran invasion.

Stealth Elements

Enemy Zero is an early example of a game containing stealth elements. While the genre was popularized by Metal Gear Solid in 1998, Enemy Zero introduced many of the core concepts two years prior. Players are encouraged to avoid combat and direct contact with the alien enemies as much as possible. In the early segments of the game, avoiding detection is not only recommended; it is required, since Laura has no means to defend herself without a gun.


Enemy Zero was a critical and commercial success, and is considered to be one of the most influential stealth-horror games of all time. Its innovative use of sound and stealth elements helped to define the genre, and its unique weapon-charging mechanic added a layer of tension and strategy to the gameplay.

Enemy Zero has been praised for its atmosphere, graphics, and sound design. The game’s soundtrack, composed by Tim Wright, is particularly noteworthy, and helps to create a sense of dread and isolation.


Enemy Zero is a classic stealth-horror game that still holds up today. Its innovative gameplay, tense atmosphere, and memorable characters make it a must-play for fans of the genre. If you’re looking for a challenging and rewarding experience, Enemy Zero is definitely worth checking out.

Additional Information

  • Enemy Zero was the first game to use the “Creature Engine”, which was later used in the development of Psygnosis’ other games, including G-Police and Formula 1 97.
  • The game was originally planned to be released on the Sega Saturn, but was eventually ported to the PlayStation and PC.
  • Enemy Zero was a commercial success, selling over 500,000 copies worldwide.
  • The game was followed by a sequel, Enemy Zero: The Last Stand, which was released in 1998.

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