[PC GAME—NO RELATION TO RECENT FILM OF THE SAME NAME]
! ! ! THIS GAME IS VERY VIOLENT—SOME SCREENSHOTS MAY DISTURB ! ! !
Just had to check Wikipedia to help me remember when I had first started this journey through… THE FOREST… (sorry) and it was upon release of the early access alpha version—that it’s technically still in, but beta and release must be coming soon if it can be judged by features, content, and playability—in May of 2014. From the beginning, I knew there was something special about this game. Until recently, though, it was not possible to finish the game’s story, and it had slowly been unlocked and built upon with well-guarded secrecy.
You start the game as a man on a plane sitting with his sleeping son in the next seat. After picking up a survival guide book from his small plastic dinner ‘table’—a detail added more recently and a nice touch, since you’ll use this book throughout to build structures, fires, etc. from—the plane hits heavy turbulence and proceeds to break apart as it crash lands on a forested peninsula. While you come-to writhing on the cabin floor, a half-naked man covered in red paint and looking like some sort of tribal native picks up your unconscious son and leaves the back half of the plane while you lose consciousness again.
So, it’s simple—you want your son back. Except that it’s not.
Continue reading “THE FOREST [the game] Early Access Review”
[AFTERGLOW: a mini-review series of my just-finished-this impressions]
Just finished this masterpiece.
I loved this game. Can’t think of a more nuanced way to express it. I’d played the majority of it several months ago, but the intensity of the stealth-based horror sections just wasn’t what I felt like immersing myself in after a hard days work, considering many other things eating at my emotional energy since then.
Finally committed and I’m really glad I did. I loved Frictional’s first game, Amnesia: The Dark Descent, but I have to say that this one is my heavily weighted favorite of the two.
The horror is strong and disturbing–and heightened due to a story filled with misdirection and perfectly vague and well-paced revelations–which makes the well-written and sometimes surprisingly intimate and touching story all that much more powerful. The stealth sections are sometimes so dread-inducing that it became hard to play for chunks longer than an hour or two.
That intensity coupled with the existential quandaries and implications of the unfurling dark science fiction story really made this a special piece. I’d go so far as to call it transcendent.
I say all of this as a huge fan of well-thought-out fusions of Science Fiction and Horror, but if that’s not a combo that does much for you, YMMV.