Ideal desk setup for horror games

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#1 Edited by mekon (453 posts) -

It's winter here in the UK, and I'm determined to make an attempt to catch up with my backlog of horror games e.g. Amnesia, Alien: Isolation. I have good black out curtains, but it won't work in the summer because it will be bright in my room due to light bleed and the sun's movement.

I just want my monitor to be the sole source of light/video at times so that I can immerse myself in games or scary films as much as possible (Spooking with Scoops style). I think I have most ambient light source problems solved e.g. removing reflective surfaces or adjusting peripherals with LEDs like my USB hub. The last thing I'm trying to resolve is my desk - I bought it second hand at a liquidation sale and it's a normal office desk which I really like, but has a polished surface and tends to reflect light.

My first thought was to buy a large sheet of black cartridge paper which I think would last well, and rest the monitor and keyboard on top of it. However I found out that if I buy that from Amazon (bearing in mind there's no suitable shop near me) it would cost £5.99 for 50 A4 sheets, which is far more than I'd want if my idea isn't great. If it did work then in the long run I'd have some replacements at least.


Is black cartridge paper good when you don't want light reflections? Or is there something cheaper/better?

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#2 Posted by kindgineer (3089 posts) -

We couldn't afford blinds when we first moved into our new home, so my wife taped up a layer of aluminum foil (took like two rolls) to the window with 2 layers of black craftsman tape and it's pitch black in our bedroom. So much so, that we still have it up with blinds because it blocks the light so well. We never use our bedroom for anything other than sleeping so it works really well. It's also super cheap so maybe that'll help? :)

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#3 Edited by mekon (453 posts) -

@kindgineer:Thanks, reinforcing the black out blinds with some adjustment or additional effort would probably help in the summer. (I've just checked the blinds again and it's very possible because they're not attached to the curtains). It's just that I find that the light from my screen bouncing off the desk is distracting. I'm okay with it when FMV/cut scenes kick in and they go to a white screen because in-game you've woken up in a hospital or something similar. That's usually in FPS games which I can see makes sense, but I think horror and strategy games are a bit different in terms of concentration.

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#4 Posted by Icemael (6866 posts) -

Put your keyboard in your lap (or put it to the side if you're playing with a gamepad) and pull your monitor towards you until it's at the edge of the desk. Not only will there be no surface for the light to reflect from, but the screen will take up more of your visual field for a better, more immersive experience.

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#5 Posted by mekon (453 posts) -

@icemael: Thanks, I think that solution for the reflection problem needed a re-think and I think that could work for me.

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