As a massive coward, I went into Uncanny Valley with deliberately sub-optimal conditions. Light glared through my window. Sound was left to wander aimlessly from my speakers. Most importantly, puppy gifs were positioned prominently on my second monitor. Despite all this, it still elicited a fright or two–the game's creepy atmosphere being interspersed with some effective scares. You can try it out, too, as its developers have released a demo ahead of the full release later this year.
If we can learn anything from popular culture, it's that the total collapse of society isn't going to be all fun and games. It does inspire fun and games, though. In a world where people will literally bring an abundance of unhealthy food to your house for money, there's something appealing about pretending to be in a desperate and harrowing battle for your life. Hence Noct, a top-down survival horror that depicts a decaying world filled with eldritch terrors—but does so in a particularly stylish and unusual way.
Previously on The Evil Within: Tango Gameworks' hopefully-good action horror game was supposed to release in August, then it fled back to late October, and then it didn't like the look of those teenagers so it decided to stay inside for a bit. Now it's been moved up slightly, at least in Europe, South Africa, India and the Middle East. The Evil Within will now launch in those places on October 14th, same as the North American date. It's very nearly a triumph for sensible release scheduling, until you notice that Australia and Japan will still have to wait until the 23rd. Booooo.
I’m tracking my doom through the fuzzy static of a whirring camera. The security office I’m in barely surpasses a shoe closet in size. Outside, I’m being hunted by a gang of animatronic animals bent on jamming my head into their smiling maws. I check the cameras again. Two small pinpricks of silvery light—they’re unmistakably eyes—return my stare from a dining room blanketed by shadow. A low chuckle rumbles between my ears. I wonder again how I would ever think taking a nightwatchman’s job at a children’s pizzeria was a good idea.
Last week Konami revealed a new Silent Hill game. After a succession of underwhelming sequels that spectacularly failed to capture the dark, subversive magic of the originals, you’d be forgiven for shrugging this news off. But this new Silent Hill is being developed by Hideo Kojima, creator of the Metal Gear series, in collaboration with Hellboy and Pan’s Labyrinth director Guillermo del Toro. Konami, it seems, are finally giving their flagship horror series the love it deserves.
Horror games are in the midst of a bit of a renaissance, thanks to titles like Outlast, Amnesia: A Machine For Pigs, The Evil Within, Alien: Isolation and countless more. So it's no surprise Atari has announced reboots for two horror properties in the form of Alone in the Dark: Illumination and Haunted House.
Does your dad have hooves? Does he carry a pitchfork around? If you answered yes to one of them he's either Mr Tumnus or some sort of farmer; if you answered yes to both, there's a good chance he's the devil. Yeah, sorry to break it to you like that. The good news is that your share a lineage with a kid named Lucius; the bad news is that he's not exactly the friendly sort. I'd go so far as to say he's a bit of a wrong'un. After murdering his (adopted) family in his first game, he's back to terrorise a sandboxy town in Lucius 2. See the firstus trailerus after the break. us.
I wouldn't normally pay these sorts of teasing marketing campaigns any heed, but when it's related to a SOMA or a new BioWare game or a remake of one of the most fascinating adventure/horror games out there, I suddenly pay meerkat-like attention. As we know, Ice-Pick Lodge's Pathologic is set to receive a remake—and now a countdown site has appeared online. In 27 days, eight hours, 38 minutes and 10...9...8 seconds something will happen, most likely the unleashing of a new bubonic plague or *cough* a link to the remake's Kickstarter page.
An announcement arrives. Where did it come from? A swirling void of unknowable madness? Skittering figures just out of sight? The bloodied heart of a diseased, living city? No, it was just an email. Fortunately, the contents of the announcement are more unusual than its delivery method: Ice-Pick Lodge—creators of The Void and, most recently, Knock-Knock—have confirmed plans to remake their debut game, Pathologic. To fund the creepy RPG/adventure, the developers will launch a Kickstarter campaign this September. As a teaser, they've also released the above image.
Alien: Isolation is not going to be like Aliens: Colonial Marines, and not just in the case that it (hopefully) won't be terrible. You will not play as "state-of-the-badass-art," but as a young woman in a terrifying situation, trying to escape the clutches of an unstoppable and thoroughly murderous monster. You can't expect to kill your way through this game, in other words—but luckily you won't have to.
The Hum is a new indie horror project that actually went up on Steam Greenlight in mid-May and made the cut shortly thereafter, but this story trailer just hit the Tubes on the weekend and it's really quite impressive. Some of the dramatic pauses in the narration are held a little too long and it's not exactly loaded with insight into what we'll be doing in the game, but as "cool setups" go it definitely has my attention.
I've been looking forward to The Vanishing of Ethan Carter from the moment I first heard about it, and so after more than a year of waiting I was very excited to watch the debut teaser trailer that came out a little earlier today. And having watched it, I am even more excited than I was before – and also very disturbed.
Being a baby is weird. My mom keeps jamming her nose in my face to tell me things I can’t possibly understand, and the most I can do in response is bobble my head around and paw at the space in front of me. When I’m freed from her totalitarian affection, my bowed little legs toddle alongside the shadow of an oversized head, awkwardly navigating a world designed for people who are much bigger than I am. And then an ugly little teddy bear starts talking to me. Maybe this is why we don’t remember early childhood.
If a tension-building wait is one of the most effective tricks in horror, it makes sense that The Evil Within will take a bit longer to reach us. Originally planned for late-August, Bethesda have now announced that their Shinji Mikami-led survival horror will be released in October.
But when in October? That depends on where you live, because, even though we'll soon all exist as virtual reality spaceships, it's still too much to expect a computer game to be released on the same day worldwide. The Evil Within launches on 21st October in North America, 23rd October in Australia and New Zealand, before finally creeping up on Europe for the 24th October. This is all in direct contravention of the first rule of horror: don't split up.
Paris is burning. The sky behind the Eiffel Tower glows an ominous orange through a haze of billowing smoke. Sparks and ash and scraps of paper float through the dark streets of the city, where cars and offices stand eerily abandoned.
A manhole opens. For a moment, nothing happens. And then a zed, a naked genetic freak sheathed in slimy grey skin, pops out of the hole like a horrorshow jack-in-the-box. The zed has the mind of a child. It doesn't know much, but it knows it wants to kill.
You wake in an empty hospital. This is never good. You press forward, squinting into the unknown. Suddenly you hear voices, a giggle from the corner of the room. It’s close - a little too close for someone with only a smartphone, glow stick and flare to defend themselves. A stack of boxes tumbles to your left and you book it, sprinting in whatever direction you can because anywhere is better than here. As horror concepts go it’s solid, if a little safe.
As any fool with a spirit level would be able to tell you, multiplayer has never been all that symmetrical, but that hasn't stopped developers from attempting to unbalance it even further. Left 4 Dead's competitive multiplayer, for example, is as asymmetrical as a Shoreditch haircut, pitting a team of zombies against a team of normals and giving each an opposing goal to achieve. The comparatively minimalist The Flock takes things in a tenser, less action-packed direction, using elements of Capture the Flag and Doctor Who's 'Blink' episode to fuel a shadow-drenched horror game for four players. It looks faintly bloody terrifying, as you can see from the first gameplay trailer, below.
"There's something wrong with this place," states the voiceover in this new trailer for The Evil Within. That's the sort of thing I usually say after Chris and Andy finish another Christopher Walken impression-off, or when Ben says... well, anything, really. But in the midsts of a blood river gushing down a corridor? Something of an understatement. Clearly, then, the protagonist of Shinji Mikami's next survival horror is made of sterner stuff than I. A good job, too.
A new patch for classic action game Resident Evil 4 HD arrived late last week, bringing with it a handful of tweaks and bug fixes. It’s nothing groundbreaking, but what is encouraging is that this RE4's fifth update in as many weeks. Updates seem to be scheduled for every Friday for the foreseeable future, a schedule that shows Capcom is absolutely serious about supporting this PC port. As the grumpy survivors of too many terrible PC ports, this is a commitment we'd like to celebrate.
The lead-up to Daylight has really managed to make it seem like more than just another first-person horror game. It’ll be one of the first major releases to use Unreal Engine 4, has procedurally generated levels, interesting Twitch integration (by way of meowing cats) and other interesting ideas. It’s also going to cost just $15 (or $10 if you pre-order), so it would have been easy to pick up out of curiosity alone. However, Zombie Studios announced that it has pushed the game's release date back to April 29 to add one thing it was missing: more scares.