By Gemma @ Juicy Game Reviews
Until Dawn made its way on to Playstation 4 consoles in August 2015. Developed by Supermassive Games, Until Dawn seemed to absorb inspiration from Quantic Dream studios popular Heavy Rain. In fact, it was very difficult to play Until Dawn without re-hashing my experience with Heavy Rain back in 2010. As I played out the game on my Twitch channel a lot of followers also made the same connection between the two.
From the get go of Until Dawn it was clear that Supermassive Games enveloped a high degree of teen horror cheesiness in to the storyline (reminiscent of Scream). High School stereotypes dripped from the screen as I meandered through the night trying to figure out what the hell is going on? Drinking, parties, a log cabin, lots of half naked running through snow and not so much as a fat person in sight. That's right. Everyone is super slim these days right?! Despite the obvious clichés, Until Dawn was a fantastic experience that really made me concentrate on every decision laid before me. If you yearn for a storyline to completely lose yourself in then Until Dawn is your game. What's more are the intricate details on offer in Until Dawn. Every freckle, hair, textures on wood and reflections seem to have been delivered to an impressive level which amplifies that immersion even more. I believe that stereotypes and high level of cheese were all crafted purposely and sprinkled in to Until Dawn's eight hours of gameplay. I can't see how else a game like this could have been pulled off?
Choices are everything in Until Dawn. Whilst the play time hovers around eight to ten hour mark, the replay value is very high due to the multiple endings available. There's a plethora of characters too. Until Dawn allows us to play as all eight at varying times throughout and the transition from character to character seemed flawless. Depending on the choices we make will depend on who lives of dies. The game can be completed with all eight surviving or all eight dying. Doesn't choice feel good? In my first playthrough, two characters survived. Rather lame I hear you say but let me know about your ending in the comments.
Until Dawn's key strength was how the game connected with me on a physiological level. My palms would feel clammy and my heart would race as soon as I had to make an all important decision, particularly as there a short window to decide. There is not option to change your mind which leaves room for error. I made plenty of mistakes. Both the scare factor and gore factor are prevalent. Very prevalent! Without spoiling it for you, I stumbled across some nice plot twists that made my jaw drop! Until Dawn really knocked my socks off.
There were welcome pauses from the frantic pace of Until Dawn in the scenes with the Psychiatrist. We found ourselves in his creepy office under his guidance whilst being asked questions. The questions had two answers to chose from but I'm unsure at how this affected Until Dawn's overall direction. At approximately half way in to the game I found myself getting lost in these sessions as I wondered where are we going with this? I completed the game with this question unanswered. Needless to say that this doesn't detract from the solid storyline.
Until Dawn is a must own title on the Playstation 4. If you can overlook the stereotypes and monotony of the psychiatrist sessions, Until Dawn is one of my most satisfying experiences of 2015. The immersion is spot!
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