Betrayer is a first person action adventure game that takes you to the New World at the turn of the 17th century. The year is 1604. You sailed from England expecting to join a struggling colony on the coast of Virginia. Instead, you find only ghosts and mysteries. What catastrophe blighted the land and drained it of color and life?
User reviews: Very Positive (1,387 reviews) - 84% of the 1,387 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Mar 24, 2014

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Recommended By Curators

"It's odd, it's visually striking, and its one of those "janky but weirdly enjoyable" type of things!"
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May 11

Spanish and Russian!

Took us a while, but we've added two more translations. We owe special thanks to Silvia, Jesus, Oscar, and Fernando for their efforts on the Spanish translation.

You also now have the option of showing the locations of chests, page scraps, spade mounds, and other useful information on the in-game map. Markers are categorized so that you can show only the specific information you want to see. Note that if you already have a game in progress, markers won't get cleared for items you've already collected, but should still help you track down any you might have missed.

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“My 7 Favorite Shooters of 2014: Betrayer is a special game, one I believe everyone should play, given the chance.”

“this is absolutely a project worth supporting if you appreciate atmospheric first-person games.”
PC Gamer

“PAX Prime 2013 Awards: Up and Comer Award. Now for the Up and Comer award, our rising star, I'm going to have to give it to a game that dazzled me.”
FPS Guru

About This Game

Betrayer is a first person action adventure game that takes you to the New World at the turn of the 17th century.

The year is 1604. You sailed from England expecting to join a struggling colony on the coast of Virginia. Instead, you find only ghosts and mysteries. What catastrophe blighted the land and drained it of color and life? Where are the settlers and tribes who lived here?

Clue by clue, you must piece together the story of what befell this doomed settlement and find a way to set things right. You will be hunted by corrupted Conquistadors and ravening shadows as you explore an expansive wilderness in order to trace the brief, tragic history of the colony and search for survivors.

Key Features

  • Explore large, open environments teeming with danger and discovery. Chart your own course in search of clues and treasures.
  • Switch between two distinct worlds featuring different enemies, obstacles, and threats.
  • Wield early 17th century weaponry including muskets, bows, crossbows, and tomahawks. Upgrade your arsenal by purchasing or finding faster, deadlier, longer-ranged weapons.
  • Charge headlong into battle with guns blazing or pick enemies off quietly. A novel, movement-based stealth system lets you hide in plain sight or use the wind to mask your footsteps.
  • Equip ability-enhancing Charms to complement your play style, granting anything from extra health to faster movement to improved stealth.
  • Play with the default visual style for maximum eeriness and tension or customize the color and contrast settings to suit your tastes.

About Blackpowder Games

Our ongoing mission is to create first person action experiences that are distinctive, compelling, and memorable regardless of scope or platform. Most of the founders began this quest together over 15 years ago at Monolith Productions and have continued to refine and improve our craft as a team ever since. We expect to continue on this righteous path for centuries to come now that the Singularity is just around the corner.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows Vista 64-bit
    • Processor: 3.0 GHz dual core or better
    • Memory: 3 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Graphics: DirectX 9 compatible with 1GB video RAM or better (NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460/AMD Radeon HD 6850)
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Windows compatible stereo sound card
    • OS: Windows Vista 64-bit / Windows 7 64-bit/ Windows 8 64-bit
    • Processor: 2.4 GHz quad core or better (enhanced for multi-core processors)
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Graphics: DirectX 9 compatible with 2GB video RAM or better (NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 Ti/AMD Radeon HD 6870)
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Windows compatible stereo sound card
Helpful customer reviews
43 of 44 people (98%) found this review helpful
11.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 13
I didn't know what to expect when I began Betrayer, but it was pretty good. While it's definitely focused on first person combat using bows and 17th century firearms, there's a large focus on exploration and figuring out what happened. It's straight forward and linear, as horror stories tend to be, but good, nontheless. One of the major draws is the desaturated graphics, which are adjustable from fully desaturated aside from red, and full saturation. You can adjust these as you please, which is pretty cool, although I will admit it's easier to pick out items and enemies when it's played in its default state (and it actually brings a horror aspect to bright daylight areas).

You go from map to map piecing together what happened, along with collecting weapons, charms, ammo and cash. There's a sneak mechanic to the game which works well, and isn't finicky. There's a melee attack, but aside from charms there's no variation there. Bows and tomahawks are reusable but not as strong as firearms initially, so a lot of the first half of the game you'll be balancing what weapons to use, etc. The maps are of a medium size aside from the tutorial map, and there's even fast travel and "return to last location" so you can hop back to town to pick up some stuff and go right back to where you were, which is nice and leads to more engaging gameplay over endless walking.

The game is about 8 or so hours long if you do everything, probably 10-12 if you go for all the achievements. The story is interesting though it'll require a lot of reading. It's definitely a more subtle kind of horror, which I think works a little better in the long run for a game like this. I'd say at $20, this is a decent buy, but I got it for $4 which is a huge steal for this.
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19 of 19 people (100%) found this review helpful
12.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 17
I'm very pleased with this game. I bought it on sale for $4 and was a little skeptical about it specifically because it looked like the kind of game I would probably enjoy a lot (I was afraid I would be pumping it up just to be let down). I'm very glad I was wrong and I can easily say that this game is worth full price.

A few bits of personal preference to start off with; I personally prefer to have the color saturation turned up in the game. There's two modes that you play in, one is in the light and the other is in the dark. The dark provides plenty of the gray color palette to satisfy any inclination for having it feel gloomy. The game itself does a good job of setting that mood even without having the colors being washed out. I also made the darks less dark and the lights less light, just so I could feel comfortable being able to see everything there was to see. The second personal preference is to NOT turn up the difficulty in the game. The default difficulty is satisfying enough for me. For players who might get frustrated enough to put the game down, I would suggest setting the difficulty to 'less deadly' right from the start. The weapons are 17th century weapons and as such are slow and feel a bit cumbersome (although not at all as inaccurate as I was expecting). You're going up against supernatural beings who are every bit as deadly as you are and if you die, they all respawn (in new spots -except inside strongholds) and you'll just have to find them and kill them again. Avoiding them is very difficult and once they spot you, they'll chase you all the way back to camp if you're not able to take them down.

The visual style of the game is excellent. The sense of walking around in the woods is truly convincing and immersive. When the wind picks up to make all the vegetation move, it's nothing less than breathtaking. I go hiking on a regular basis and this game comes as close as any game has ever come to replicating that experience.

Navigating through the game and the story can seem a little confusing at first but it's actually very simple. You basically use two things to tell you what to do. Early in the game, you'll get a map and you'll get special senses. Basically, all you have to do is turn on all of your map markers and go to the site of each one. In addition to that, just keep using your special hearing skill (x-key by default) and follow the sounds to lead you where to go. That's it.

The game is pretty scary to me in a fun ghost story kind of way and it would make a great game to buy and play around Halloween, although there's certainly no need to wait for the next Halloween to come around. If you have a system that lets you set all the eye candy to maximum, it's worthwhile to do so but the game is well designed, with a sense of peril and accomplishment that really satisfies. I haven't finished the story yet so I'll update the review once I make my way through the whole game.


Ok [I think] I've finished the game although it seems a little strange that it doesn't have any credits available, but I guess that's because it was a small team. Anyway, here are some pros and cons.

-Great overall story which is worth sticking around to see where it leads.
-Great presentation. Sort a combination of light versions of Skyrim, Far Cry 3, and Blair Witch Project.
-Just about the right length considering how repetitive it starts to feel at the end.

-Lots of structures but not a single one is open to you to take a look inside. It's all bunch of external shells and doors that won't open -basically just scenery. Considering it's a period piece, it would have been nice to get a closer glimpse into what the daily lives of these people might have been like. Maybe the sequel (?) will include this.
-No voice acting. I know this is unfair considering that it's an independent game with a low budget and also that it's available in multiple languages. Nevertheless, maybe this game will be so successful that they'll be able to have a few more bells and whistles next time around. Having said that, I'd very much prefer to have it be all text than to have any bad acting so there's that.
-Repetitive quests. Why is it that on every map I have to find someone's head, tell ghosts to find their way by listening to the bell, and find apparently meaningless gifts for the chick in red? These things feel like and basically are meaningless distractions from the story that don't take up much time but nevertheless do so unnecessarily.

Overall, I'd say it gets an 8/10 score. The game was a lot of fun and very artfully presented. A well thought out sequel could really shine and I'd really like to see this title thrive as a new property.
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16 of 16 people (100%) found this review helpful
9.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 12
to be honest, i bought this game on sale and saw it as nothing more than a time waster. after only two hours of playing i am hooked, and it has become much more than that. both the light and dark worlds are tense and oppressive, the weapons and how they handle is probably my favorite thing, it really makes you think about how to handle yourself when in combat. pistols and muskets are slow to reload, slow enough that it becomes a hinderance when faced with more than two opponents. this is where the beauty lies with this game, you cant just run around and expect to survive, there is a thought process required. while im nowhere near finished with this game i can still give it a solid thumbs up, and i urge anyone who is debating the purchase to just go for it, whether on sale or full price, its worth it
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14 of 16 people (88%) found this review helpful
10.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 25
Not bad.
Artistic, atmospheric and well storied.

On the other hand, it's a little slow, a little easy and if you're not careful then the story doesn't really flow well.

If you play it, it's important to use the listen function to guide you around not the marks on the map. The map marks disappear after your first visit and it's easy to lose track of places you need to come back to.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
24.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 23
Have you ever seen the Disney movie, Pocahontas? Be prepared to be led on a magical journey through the wilderness surrounding early English settlement in Virginia. You will learn to appreciate the things you take for granted and about the life altering passions of human nature.

"Quit jerkin' me around, reviewer," I hear you saying. "This is a horror game about exploring a black and white world filled with scary monsters. There is no way Betrayer is at all like Pocahontas!"

Betrayer is like Pocahontas; not because they share a setting but because they are both stories of outsiders coming to understand and appreciate the world around them by introduction to a foreign culture. You, the player, are the outsider. You are learning to appreciate the world of sound design. The culture that will teach it to you is the setting Betrayer presents.

Okay, I'm jerkin' ya around a bit. I'm sure as a clever reader who enjoys my long-form reviews, you already appreciate what good sound design can mean for horror and stealth games. But Betrayer has built its sound design into its every aspect to create the perfect study.

The stealth elements of Betrayer are entirely sound focused and are essential to your ability to remain hidden and to detect enemies. Those enemies have a very small vision range. However, if you run or use a firearm, they'll spot you in the dead of night, through a blizzard, in a concrete bunker, on another planet. You'll need to move slowly or run in short bursts while gusts of wind cover the sound of your movement.

You won't hear the wolf cry to the blue corn moon. But you may learn which animal calls are made by an enemy that's just a silhouette hiding in pure, black shadow. Only by identifying the calls they make will you pinpoint their position and save yourself from a deadly ambush.

It's like Marco Polo played for keeps.

Likewise, sound contributes more to the game's tension and atmosphere than the visuals ever could. Oh yes, the conquistador enemies you encounter early are unsettling for their hunched posture and the segmented movements of their armor. But it's the bear roaring that makes them frightening. The use of animal sounds for humanoid enemies lends them that elusive otherness that makes them horrifying. It also characterizes the savagery of their nature brought to life by the cursed land.

While stealth and combat are important parts of Betrayer, I would say the core gameplay is about exploration and investigation. And like the others, sound is key. Objects of interest give off directional sounds to help you locate them and you can press a button to hear a directional sound leading you to your next main objective.

Your goal is to find physical evidence of the events that transpired and a bell to ring to visit a dark world haunted by ghosts. You'll need to use your evidence and their testimonies to put together the story of the colony. You won't paint with all the colors of the wind, no. You will paint yourself a picture of racism, murder, ♥♥♥♥, betrayal, and all the other destructive passions of a people unleashed by a wild land they weren't prepared for.

There is a map and visual cues so that the hearing impaired might enjoy the game. However, Betrayer has all kinds of new and exciting ways to diddle your ear-hole, so you should lean back, put on headphones, and enjoy the ride.

Combat is fitting for the game's time period and tone. You'll have access to a variety of bows, pistols, and muskets. The latter hit - you and your enemies - for deadly amounts of damage, but make noise sure to give you away. And you might as well go for a coffee while they reload.

Bows are silent, but the early bows you find only do deadly damage if you can fire them with precision while hidden. And as everyone knows, an arrow bouncing harmlessly off your armor is the universal greeting for people who would like to be unceremoniously shot.

The game flow is similar to Bioshock: you start poorly equipped and combat is hazardous and resource depleting. By the end of the game, though, you'll have found powerful weapons that reload stupidly fast and have tons of health restoring items and ammo. Fortunately, combat never stops being deadly where groups of enemies are concerned and the last segments of the game put your resources to use in large, difficult fights.

Like that adventure under the sea, Betrayer's narrative is similar. Take it from me. (What is it with me and Disney films today?)

You play as an outsider washed ashore and left to discover the fate of a fallen society after the fact. Unlike Bioshock (you didn't think I was talking about The Little Mermaid?), Betrayer takes place in the very real setting of Virginia in the early seventeenth century.

Can you imagine being dropped into a proper wilderness with nothing to help you survive? Try to imagine it without all the cabin building karate ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ of recent survival games. What I'm getting at here is that Blackpowder Games chose a naturally scary setting. Life as an early American colonist couldn't have been anything other than ♥♥♥♥-terrifying.

They nailed that fear of being isolated in a very alive land you don't know anything about and threw in some monsters for good measure. You'll find this Virginia's abandoned forts swarming with wraiths, Indians made of ash, and growly shambling conquistadors.

The only living thing not trying to kill you seems to be a lady with a pragmatic attitude who nevertheless wears her best sexy Little Red Riding Hood Halloween costume. Like the ghosts, her past is a mystery to be solved and tied into the omnipresent curse.

Wait, what? I haven't talked visuals, yet? Sing with all the voices of the mountain, indeed. The sound design here is that good. But Betrayer also looks good. Everything is in a stylish black and white with touches of bright red that direct your focus. The wind effects through the dense foliage of your surroundings look great and the enemy animations strike a nice balance between natural and surreal.

The game also gives you the option to play the game in full color in the light world. And the game looks just as good that way. The only notable weakness is that the contrast is turned up to eye-gouging degrees. I think the purpose was to try and give the light world a sense of hyper-real vibrancy, which it kind of does. But its biggest success was giving me a headache and making some things really hard to see. That might be by design, but it's too much in my opinion. I turned the contrast down halfway through and felt no shame whatsoever. Fortunately, the option is there.

There are some other minor criticisms to be made.

The in game map is at-odds with using sound to navigate. If you only use the map, you'll get confused about events that only trigger in a sequence that the sound navigation would unveil. The sound navigation will disappoint your Nazi robot-like need to follow the most efficient course through all the treasures and objects of interest. And you will have that need because the pattern for each area - explore light world, ring bell, find ghosts - becomes routine. So neither method is ideal.

And if you want a pure stealth game, this isn't it. Stealth is a tool that you can and should use, but even early enemies are designed so that they will ambush you. There are several big fights that are unavoidable. In the dark world enemies pop out of the ground right in front of you. And, worst of all for stealth-lovers, there's no way to run away and hide. Once enemies have found you, they will follow you to the ends of the map (barring the perfect storm of big cover objects, wind gusts, and timing). It's not terrible that Betrayer isn't a stealth game, but I'd sure love to see a proper stealth game use some of the ideas here.

Worth ten bucks? Well, I know good sound design and horror has a life, has a spirit, has a name. It's Betrayer.
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