I love the horror genre, and videogames are no exception, with some prime examples over the years from Konami’s brilliant Silent Hill series (especially the unnerving, brilliantly paced SH #2), the much acclaimed Resident Evil franchise, and now this from Electronic Arts, a publisher I have come to despise due to their endless revenue and their buying up of talented development houses only to rip them apart until little of the initial talent remains. Oh and their yearly sports updates and mainstream marketing leave a bad taste in my mouth. Yet word has it that this publisher has begun to turn its game around with some promising titles on the horizon (including the fantastic looking Mirror’s Edge) and so we come to this, EA’s toe-in-the-water attempt at a survival horror.
I liked the look of this, claustrophobic corridors, inventive weaponry, eerie atmosphere and ‘things’ to kill on a haunted space ship. Harks back to the forgotten classic horror movie Event Horizon (which is brilliant – don’t let anyone tell you different), as you play some Marine who thankfully is not bald or muscular, but kinda looks a bit f***** up with a bizarre suit and helmet. This is an example of the game’s top-drawer art design with some great H.R. Geiger influenced imagery and stunning attention to detail. Yes, it was done just as well in ID’s brilliant shooter Doom 3 (which this game resembles in all but perspective), and for me, the whole place is a joy to explore. Add to this some inventive creature design (they kinda look like mutated survivors of the space ship, at first guess at least), and some intense confrontations and jump moments – I’m already completely sucked in.
I will report back soon with more on my impressions as I play through the game. So far so brilliant.