Outlast 2 update dials back the difficulty

Outlast 2 is, by all reports, a very good horror game. We scored it an 85 in our review, calling it "a beautiful, brutal journey through extreme spiritual anxieties," while a friend of mine who's playing it expresses his appreciation in a somewhat more raw fashion, through long outbursts of frightened, "Gotta-get-away" obscenities. Some players are apparently struggling with it, however, and so today developer Red Barrels released an update that dials things back a bit for players who want the horror experience without the punishing gameplay.

"Today's patch introduces some minor adjustments to the game’s difficulty in key areas and moments," the studio said on Steam. "On Normal difficulty this will offer players a more appropriately balanced experience while still maintaining higher levels of challenge on Hard and Nightmare difficulties." 

The update also makes "a number of bug fixes and small improvements" to the game, although the Simplified Chinese translation is still in the works and won't be ready until (hopefully) next week. The full patch notes are below—and for a little more help with the horror, be sure to catch James' list of seven things he wishes he'd known before he started playing, right here.

  • Global rebalancing of the game difficulty.
  • Microphone no longer uses extra batteries.
  • Increased the size of subtitles.
  • Fixed an issue on Intel HD 4000 cards where most dynamic lights were missing.
  • Fixed an issue where flickering black squares appear in the center of the screen at some specific resolutions.
  • Fixed an issue with alternate controller mappings and the camcorder UI.
  • Fixed an issue with double doors where one of them is locked.
  • Fixed an issue causing lost save games when Steam somehow fails to initialize.
  • Fixed some heretic sound effects.
  • Fixed multiple minor gameplay issues (collisions, crawling, tutorials, etc.)
  • Fixed multiple rare crashes.
  • Added a "-refreshrate 60" command-line parameter to specify a preferred refresh rate (replace 60 by the desired refresh rate).
  • Added a "-notexturelimit" command-line parameter to remove texture size limits based on VRAM amount.
  • Added a "-borderless" command-line parameter to use borderless fullscreen and not have to edit INI files.
Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.