I love Steam sales.
I never used to game much on PC. Mostly because I am not dexterous. If there’s too much going on on-screen my hands panic and don’t want to cooperate with me. In fact, Diablo II: Lord of Destruction was the first game that made me realize, “Hey! I can hit more than one key at a time!”.
I particularly liked point and click adventure games because many of them were supernatural themed and they’re games that one can get up and walk away from without worrying that you’ll come back to a dead character. I also can’t afford the higher end machines required to play some games smoothly.
So consoles (especially the Playstation) have always been my first choice for gaming. In the PS1 and PS2 days there was a pretty good selection of horror titles. The PS3 came out and the horror titles dwindled quite a bit. Especially Silent Hill. But Silent Hill is a subject for another post. I have a lot to say about that.
It looks as though horror might be making a comeback on the consoles. But until then, there’s Steam. I don’t knew what the general consensus is about it but I’ve never had any problems with it myself.
I’ve found a lot of supernatural and horror themed titles on there. A lot of indie games are popping up, some good, some bad. I just went on a shopping spree so I’ll be letting you know how they turn out.
First up is Shutter.
You play as a security robot-drone (that I nicknamed Johnny-5) from the R.A.V.E.N. company sent to investigate reports of a cabin being vandalized and graffiti’d. You’re job is to take pictures of the vandalism and possibly catch the perpetrators in the act.
As you roam the house and take pictures another story starts to come clear about who the real occupants are.
The game is more of a story-exploration game than an action-oriented game. You don’t do very much. You take the pictures that your human handler asks you too, restart the generator a few times and that’s about all. There are no real puzzles to solve, no monsters to avoid or kill. But, to me, that’s perfectly ok as long as the story is good. Which it is.
As you roam the house you’ll find notes on the wall (conveniently at little robot height) telling you the story of the cabin’s former occupants. On the main menu there is a follow up letter to the game but it’s clearly marked as a spoiler so it’s best to read it afterwards. I thought it would have been better to be an unlockable item but that’s just my opinion.
The controls were a little touchy at first but once I got used to them they worked smoothly. It ran smoothly and on my old PC (which is nicknamed The Snail for good reason) so I can’t see there being a big problem for anyone else. Sorry I can’t be more specific. That kind of stuff is not my strong suit.
The controls are the basic WASD to move, left click for a first-person view, space bar for the camera and E for your computer’s menu from which you can upload pictures and check emails from your human.
The atmosphere is used well and they keep the jump scares to a minimum and the ones they do use work because they have already set up the story and atmosphere.
It’s very short, I was finished in just a few hours and that was with interruptions (sometimes it sucks being an adult with, you know, adulting stuff to do).
All in all it’s a creepy, fun little game and I’d be interested to see what the creators could do with a larger budget. It’s only three dollars and the game is well worth it.
I’m also currently playing The 7th Guest and I was going to play Pineview Drive but The Snail says no way on that one. Seriously, I don’t know what The Snail’s problem is. It’s not like Pineview Drive and Kraven Manor have insanely great graphics to slow it down. I guess it’s just old and slow. So, I’m playing Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers instead.