TURN the lights off, get your best headsets on and get ready for the season finale of Supermassive Games Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil in Me. The fourth and final episode of season one.
I still find it amazing how Supermassive Games have made this an annualized series while not compromising on the quality of stories and gameplay improvements each year. The Dark Pictures games are definitely something I look forward to each year, with this year continuing to impress me once more.
For those not too familiar with the Dark Pictures series, they are stand alone cinematic/narrative horror games where the decisions that you make, however so small or big can ultimately shape the outcome of the game and have dire consequences on the outcome, the gameplay and ultimately, who lives and who dies.
The story starts off in 1893 when we meet HH Holmes who after a series of events in the ‘Murder Castle’ is referred to as America’s first serial killer. Which for those who are wondering, is in fact true. Holmes in real life (and in the game) claimed to have killed at least 27 people. Among his many misdeeds, were suffocating victims in a vault, boiling a man in oil and poisoning wealthy women in order to seize their fortunes.
After being caught and sentenced, the game jumps forward to present times where a team of five documentary film makers are invited to a modern day replica of the previously mentioned ‘Murder Castle’ in the hopes of saving their company as it seems they have fallen on hard times. Eager for their next big break, they are more than happy to accept the invitation.
The Devil In Me starts off at an extremely slow pace when all five team members arrive at the island. I’m not going to lie, this was the worst part of the game. I understand it serves the purpose of introducing you to the mechanics of the game, I just wish there would have been a more exciting way of doing this.
When you finally arrive at the hotel, things start to pick up. No sooner are you greeted and given your rooms, you will find yourselves alone and free to explore as each character is introduced with their special abilities. No character is exactly the same as each has a speciality rating between the sound technician, cameraman, presenter, and director.
Throughout your time in The Devil in Me, you will in addition to trying to survive, be on the lookout for collectables in the game. The standard ‘Premonitions’ serve as an assistant to show what may come through your time in the game to business cards. These are all littered across the hotel, so always be on the lookout as you never know what they may do to assist you down the track or give you a back story to the potential truth of the situation.
A new addition to the game is being able to pick up objects and hold them in an inventory mapped to your D-Pad, these can serve as keys you’ll need to weapons that may ultimately save your life.
The hotel itself is probably the main character of the game as tight hallways took me back to the old school days of the Resident Evil franchise, always afraid of what might be around the corner and finding the right door to open to progress you further. On top of all this, they’re are freaky looking animatronic statues littered across the building, each one making a potential sound or serving as a trap for its victims.
The sound of the game is amazing, this is why I suggest wearing a headset while playing the game, there was nothing worse than walking down a long hallway trying to find your way out, only to hear the second set of footsteps lurking. It’s not until you stop that you realise they might not in fact be yours.
Each character in The Devil in Me is voiced over very well to suit each of their unique personalities and everyone there has a history that can either play as a strength or weakness to your ultimate survival.
Like opening a bottle of champagne, you will start by slowly twisting it in anticipation of the cork’s inevitable explosion, when all hell breaks loose and your all in a battle for your survival while being stalked by the killer in his rat trap of a maze which is The Hell Castle.
On another note, if you own all of the other previous games in the series digitally, you will be able to access them all from the main menu of any of the games launched. Meaning you can binge the season.
The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil in Me is overall a fantastic game that I can’t recommend highly enough for the sheer amount of gameplay possibilities you can get from the many potential outcome – I think an AUD$59.95 RRP is an absolute bargain for these games.