Amnesia: The Dark Descent

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Amnesia: The Dark Descent

If you're looking for a good scare, try playing Amnesia: The Dark Descent with the lights turned off.

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I would probably get it, but it seems a tad bit too scary for poor old me.

I'm actually doing a Let's Play of it Advertising? ME?! and I have to admit, I'm crapping myself.
I'm only 90 minutes in, and it's the scariest game I've ever played. That may not sound like much, considering it's just about the only scary game I've played, but it's meant as praise.

This is one of those times that I, (if I had a decent rig) would put up with a keyboard to try out a game. It looks absolutely fantastic!

Amnesia: The Dark Descent is the first survival horror game that I have ever played. I can't really say that it's better creating an atmosphere than, say, Silent Hill because I simply have no experience when it comes to horror games, so forgive me if I say something stupid here.
I believe that the game has some nice touches, the bugs scattering the floor, the occasional scream when you feel particularly safe, the fact that you have to find out if you have to pull or push open a door every time you're running from a monster and then crying on the floor on fetal position because you spent two seconds pulling the door instead of pushing it and you felt that two seconds was enough for the monster to come right up to you and bite your skin off but you're also too afraid to look behind and see how far it is because that would just burn even more precious life-saving time. It's a pretty scary game, at least for me, an inocent soul from the magical land of unicorns and lollipops but I'm afraid that means that what I experienced as pants-soiling horrifying might be a small scare for someone with (any) experience on horror games.

I bought this game last night based off Yahtzee's review of it and its been scaring me shitless. I had to put the game down for a while before my own sanity meter depletes. Its not going to give me nightmares tonight but while playing it I'm wound up into such a tight ball of paranoia and "OH SHIT" that I've been bothering my roommates while they try to do work with my constant screaming at the game.

I bought this game a couple of days ago and I haven't felt genuinely frightened by a game in a long time. The very first game that made me this frightened was Resident Evil 3 and yes, it was because of Nemesis himself, the second was Silent Hill 2 and the GameCube remake of Resident Evil. No other game has left me so frightened after those, even Penumbra itself, it was scary, but not as scary as Amnesia.

Even I watched a couple of walkthroughs on YouTube and even after watching those, I still felt way too scared to keep on playing. The sounds are the best selling point for me in this game, I'd heavily recommend to play this with loud headphones/speakers with MSN or any other IM closed (stay "offline" in Steam and Xfire) to immerse yourself as seamless as possible.

Oficially, the scariest game I've ever played in a long while.

"I can't think of any other genre where the central purpose of the game is to make the player feel a specific emotion."

...Is rape a genre? How about RapeLay?

This is, without a doubt, the scariest form of media currently in existence. These indie game developers have created a work of pure, unadulterated terror that scratches at your sanity as you play. I was sweating and hearing things after shutting down the game.

The sound DUM da da DUM da da DUM da da DUM holds a special place in my heart after playing this game. Hopefully this kind of quality psychological mindwarp will become a bit more prevalent, as it's my favorite genre.

Shamus Young:
Experienced Points: Amnesia: The Dark Descent

If you're looking for a good scare, try playing Amnesia: The Dark Descent with the lights turned off.

Read Full Article

As a Silent Hill and Fatal Frame fan, this is definitely something I'll have to look into.

Oh, but the column does contain one notable error. Eat Pray Love is actually an extremely frightening movie. In fact, just the thought of watching it gives me nightmares.

I've thought about getting this game lately. It's about the only game that looks remotely scarey, with FEAR 3 the only game that sticks out to me, and that series has gone down hill since they explained more things and starting turning to jump scares and destroying the pacing after the more japanese style horror of the first FEAR.

Do you remember those nightmares you had as a kid where a monster was chasing you and you just wanted to become so small you could disappear? Well, this game gives that exact same emotion. I wants to make me hide in a closet and sit there forever.

Incrédible game.

00DUMB:
"I can't think of any other genre where the central purpose of the game is to make the player feel a specific emotion."

...Is rape a genre? How about RapeLay?

Is rape an emotion?

OT: This article really gave my a craving for some good survival-horror games. Are there any decent ones on console? Like Shamus said about Dead Space, Resident Evil, etc, those are just monster shooting galleries. Any genuine survival-horror games that are scary for the 360?

StriderShinryu:

As a Silent Hill and Fatal Frame fan, this is definitely something I'll have to look into.

Fatal Frame: now that was a scary game. I'll have to get Dark Descent but I might hunt down Fatal Frame first

This game is such an excellent buy. Support these people an buy their game too. They need it!

Such a terrifying game that always kept me on edge

Ooo this is good! I've just started playing Penumbra Overture, been wanting to for ages but didn't have the right graphics card.

I have to say that aside from Silent Hill (which I'm a HUGE fan of) there has never been a game that has scared me so much in literally the first few minutes. Seriously, you start the game and BAM, you're underground and you have to open a door to proceed... what's so scary about that? I guess it's partly the physics engine which makes even a mundane task like opening a door seem like a real action instead of a simple button press. You have control over the door, you are opening and revealing the unknown space behind it. You can do it fast, you can do it slow, but damn you've still got to get it done one way or another! It's a real example of the videogame industry PR department's favourite word: immersion.

Damn, has this ever got me pumped for Amnesia now! Thanks Shamus!

Ok, really might have to get this game - I do like to be scared, and so far games are the most immersive way I've found to be creeped out, when done well. I once played that level of Thief 3 at 3am in the dark. It was terrifying. It was AWESOME. I could almost forgive the game its lack of rope arrows, unimmersive lock-picking system and wasted city street areas for that one level.

StriderShinryu:
Oh, but the column does contain one notable error. Eat Pray Love is actually an extremely frightening movie. In fact, just the thought of watching it gives me nightmares.

It's truly frightening just how self-absorbed the main character is.

Putting an air horn into the middle of Eat, Pray, Love wouldn't turn it into a scary movie.

No, it's scary all by itself. But it would have made it an immeasurably better film if it drowned out all the "Me, me, me; wah, wah, wah."

Hmm. I actually really liked the voice in penumbra overture, I think his name was Clarence. It made for great moments where he started to mess with your head in order to preserve him self.

Its one of those games thats freaky, just because its freaky.

In a world where nearly every videogame made has you pinned as some super soldier, fighting against legions of cannon fodder, this is a breath of fresh air.

To put it basically, You.Dont.Stand.A.Chance.

At the first sign of danger, you have to run.

Sure, fling a chair at whats chasing you.
^Congratulations, you just pissed it off.^
^your organs are now a necktie^
^shortly after, your dead^

I have the same problem with Amnesia as I do with Penumbra- irritating use of interface screws. I'm comfortable enough with situations where I can't fight back (near-perfect Expert ghost run of the Shalebridge Cradle, thank you very much), but when you start penalizing me for perfectly rational attempts to deal with that limitation (in Penumbra, panic attacks if you look too closely at an enemy while hidden; in Amnesia, sanity loss if you stand in the darkness too long) then that makes me feel like you're unfairly stacking the deck against me in an effort to push me into bad situations and FORCE "omg scary monster saw me, must run" moments. It's annoying at best and insulting at worst, and the primary reason why I never finished Overture or bought Amnesia. And that's a shame, because in so many other ways these games are outstanding horror experiences- but I can't stand it when a game tries to shove me into failure just so it can do something showy.

Hmmm.... I'll have to look out for a Steam sale.

Shamus Young:
Pretty much anything made since 2004 looks awesome to me.

Totally agree, but I'd like to add something: startling the player can be a good thing too. Only one game made me fall of my chair, and that was Thief. This game played with your nerves, and frankly, it wasn't an intentional startle anyway. I was wandering on a dark alley, trying to be stealthy and all when I fell into a hole. Not a big hole mind you, all I had to do to get out was to jump near the edge. But I decided to rotate the camera, and guess what, standing behind me was this big ass spider which also shrieked when I stumbled with the crosshair on it.

Same with Undying and Penumbra. The atmosphere is all that matters, because you WILL startle eventually, since your nerves are stretched.

To people who played and/or beat Amnesia:

How about the plot? Is it any good? No spoilers please, just yes or no. I'm mostly playing games for a good story, and if Amnesia is only a scare package without anything else, I'll pass. Otherwise, I think I'll buy it to fill some time time before AC: Brotherhood release.

I downloaded the demo off Steam after Yahtzee's review and I was so freaking bored that I uninstalled it after a few minutes. I guess horror games just don't work for me.

Which has me wondering why it didn't work for me. It's too easy to say that I would only be comfortable facing such a situation with a shot gun and rocket launcher. In fact, I find such a suggestion rude and more than a little dim.

No, I think it's because it took away the ordinance and replaced it with... nothing. At least as far as I can tell. It appeared that the means at the player's disposal was to stealth their way around and running away when a shambling grotesquery gave chase.

This does indeed give the player that feeling of panicky helplessness wear you hope you get where you're going undetected because being detected will fuck things up completely since there is no plan B shotgun.

Or at least it would have except this set up brought me out of the experience. Maybe I just don't like stealth games either, which is basically what this game as. take three hours to walk five feet and still get spotted by that guy you didn't see, mother fucker.

But what really threw me out of the experience was that I felt like I couldn't do anything. This may be the disadvantage games like Amnesia has against ones with guns.

Guns are fairly easy to understand. You point them at stuff you don't like and mash the button to make the loud noise until they fall down. My point is that a shooter game is easy to figure out. Even someone who's never played a video game before could figure out an FPS. It's not that hard to figure out what you're supposed to be doing.

I didn't know what I was supposed to be doing in Amnesia. Oh there was all that text I could have read. But frankly, if I need to read a wall of text to play or care about a game, then the game has failed. I get that the character has amnesia and had left a letter to itself, telling it to go somewhere to do something. Beyond that, I couldn't tell you and the basic controls weren't much help.

It's a concept called "efficacy." Merriam-Webster defines it as "the power to produce an effect." As an example, take the game Pac-Man. The goal is fairly simple, clear all of the dots from the screen while avoiding the monsters.

Now, let's say the controls were changed so that you could only move left and right but not up and down. Your feeling of efficacy would be greatly diminished and you'd likely not play the game.

Let's say you have to time Pac-Man's mouth opening and closing just right to eat any of the dots. If not, then he bounces off the dots since they block his way. Your efficacy is even more diminished. The previous one is probably just a broken joystick that makes the game impossible. This one is possible but so unreasonable that one wonders who though anyone would find this fun.

I'm not saying that Amnesia is like that. I am saying that I felt like I did not have any efficacy. I had little idea what I was supposed to do and nor how to do it.

People can have many reactions to a loss of efficacy. A big one is boredom. If you've ever been to a meeting where you work or at school, you've likely felt this. When you feel like you can't have an effect on something, you lose interest. This is what I felt.

What I'm suggesting is if the developers had done, I don't know, something that somehow kept my interest then I might not have gotten bored with their game so quickly.

It's not a good game. It's a f-ing terrifying experience.

In my mind, that's better.

I own the game, and it is by far the most terrifying game I have ever played. I've play ALL the good ones that have hit triple A status, and a few of the indies that people rave about. Amnesia trumps them all. Silent Hill 2? Move over. Amnesia is going to take a seat on that same bench.

I've already done all I can with my friends to get them interested in the game. I've got one other person to get it, and he LOVES it (I knew he would- he loves survival horror like I do). If you're not into survival horror, then the king of all survival horror games probably is not up your ally. But if you like the occational thrill brought on by a game that immerses you like no other, then give Amnesia a try. It's not expensive either.

snowman6251:
I bought this game last night based off Yahtzee's review of it and its been scaring me shitless. I had to put the game down for a while before my own sanity meter depletes. Its not going to give me nightmares tonight but while playing it I'm wound up into such a tight ball of paranoia and "OH SHIT" that I've been bothering my roommates while they try to do work with my constant screaming at the game.

the game is said to be really short, but I wouldn't know anything about that. It took me two weeks to beat. :) That's what happens when you can only play 30-45 minutes at a time. :D It was THAT terrifying for me.

Shamus, I think you forgot to mention one thing about Amnesia; the game usually reminds you that you're defenseless right after you feel like you've accomplished something. I remember early on that I got trapped in a hallway and had to find a way out. Once I broke part of the wall and solved a short puzzle, I found the key that I needed to progress through the game. I picked it up with a sense of accomplishment, and then a sudden *THUD* noise comes from the room that I was just in, followed by a "HOLY S**T!", which came from myself. I think this is probably the biggest factor of Amnesia; the game says you're powerless and then constantly reminds you of that.

I'm always looking for horror games since movies and nothing else works for me and I like to be immersed that much. I got Amnesia as soon as it was released. It is the scariest horror game ever made. This is coming from a guy that played all horror games since Resident Evil 1. I almost shit my pants when I played Amnesia. Even if you're not a fan of horror games you must get this one. It's just perfect.

the antithesis:
I uninstalled it after a few minutes. I guess horror games just don't work for me.

Try playing it at least for an hour. Demo doesn't really show how good the game is anyway so maybe that's the problem. I didn't even play the demo, I bought the game as soon as I saw the developer. I knew it couldn't be bad.

I only played it a bit (like, an hour or two at most), what i liked the most was the way we interacted with doors/cupboards/etc by usign the mouse as if it was our hand. For a moment there i was back in Thief2, quietly looting stuff.

What i found a bit irritating was the short lifespan of the lantern (burns oil way too fast imho) and rarity of the.. item that light things up permanently.

Didnt meet any monster. Yet. I was busy getting lost in some sort of library.

I'll have to look into this game later, games where you aren't really able to fight the enemies in a traditional sense, such as this and Echo Night: Beyond, to me, provide more scares for your buck. The only real trade-off is that you don't get the scares from having ammunition and running out just as a baddy appears at the end of the hall, or your weapon jamming in the middle of a stormy night in an abandoned factory as monsters swarm outside, ready to rend your flesh from your body.

StriderShinryu:

Shamus Young:
Experienced Points: Amnesia: The Dark Descent

If you're looking for a good scare, try playing Amnesia: The Dark Descent with the lights turned off.

Read Full Article

As a Silent Hill and Fatal Frame fan, this is definitely something I'll have to look into.

Oh, but the column does contain one notable error. Eat Pray Love is actually an extremely frightening movie. In fact, just the thought of watching it gives me nightmares.

Oh if you're a Silent Hill fan then definitely. You will love it. You know how the main point of Silent Hill is that the town itself is the main enemy, not the creatures? Toying with you as if it's a living thing getting pleasure from your fear? That is exactly the feel of Amnesia, and it's more gripping than a sandpaper vice.

I watched a trailer of this game and thought 'Dude! Right on!'

So I downloaded the demo to see if it's worth the hype.

...I'm too afraid to play it. *Fail*

[quote="JoeCool385" post="6.243172.8833016"]Hmmm.... I'll have to look out for a Steam sale.

You totally missed the Steam Halloween sale. It went from $19.99 to $13.49 for a good 4 days.

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