A fast paced FPS with an engrossing storyline written by cult Scottish author Christopher Brookmyre. You play Heather Quinn aka “Athena” trapped in a world of video games, desperate to find a way back home. Will you make it? Or will you be trapped here forever? Here's where you find out..
User reviews: Very Positive (206 reviews) - 81% of the 206 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Oct 13, 2015

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Recent updates View all (104)

November 4, 2015



  • Fixed issue that could cause dialogue to be skipped on Rescue Run
  • Fixed an issue where mirror shader on Alive1 would appear black
  • Fixed occasional issue that could result in player dying while transitioning into next level
  • Fixed checkpoints status not being saved correctly on Planetfire: Ascension

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October 9, 2015



  • Improved level loading process to reduce memory usage when transitioning between large scenes
  • Fixed some unpredictable behaviour when restoring a saved game on Mac
  • Many visual improvements to Death or Glory levels
  • Many visual improvements to Age of Attrition level
  • Various tweaks and improvements to NPC behaviour

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About This Game


Bedlam is a unique FPS game based on a novel of the same name by cult Scottish author Christopher Brookmyre.

Pitched as a shooter for those who survived online gaming in the 80s and 90s, Bedlam takes a look through an iconic time in online gaming and serves up some authentic gaming nostalgia with up-to-date graphics and gaming features. Bedlam is set entirely in the first-person but will explore other game genres from a first-person perspective.

In the game you play Heather Quinn (aka Athena) a colleague of Ross Baker (aka Bedlam). Heather is an overworked and underpaid scientist developing medical technology for corporate giant Neurosphere. One rainy Monday morning Heather volunteers as a test candidate for the new Neurosphere brain scanning tech - anything to get out of the office for a few hours.

But when she gets out of the scanner she discovers she's not only escaped the office, but possibly escaped real life for good! Heather finds herself trapped in Starfire - the violent sci-fi game she spent her teenage years playing - with no explanation, no backup and, most terrifyingly, no way out!

Join us in Early Access and get ready to unleash BEDLAM.

The description below was written by Christopher Brookmyre for the release of the novel in 2013

Heaven is a prison. Hell is a playground.

Would it be your ultimate fantasy to enter the world of a video game?

A realm where you don’t have to go to work or worry about your health; where you can look like a hero or a goddess; where you can fly space-ships, slay dragons, visit any period in history, any realm in fiction, yet all of it feels completely real. A realm where there are no consequences and no responsibilities, to the extent that even if you die, you can just respawn and start again.

Or would it be your worst nightmare?

Trapped in a place where every demon ever conjured by the human mind can be made flesh. Cut off from the real world, unable to see your family or friends ever again. Stuck in an endless state of war and chaos where the pain and fear feels real and from which not even death can offer an escape.

Prison or playground. Heaven or hell.

This is where you find out

Check out the first hands on preview of Bedlam by Rock, Paper, Shotgun: http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2014/07/25/bedlam-game/

One of the first Bedlam play thru's by Jim Sterling of The Escapist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jutpej9ZcyM
And coverage about our female lead character Heather Quinn by BBC News: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-highlands-islands-27695235

System Requirements

Mac OS X
    • OS: Windows XP or later
    • Processor: Dual Core 2Ghz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Any DirectX 9 level (shader model 2.0) capable card
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Any DirectX Compatible
    • OS: Windows 7 or later
    • Processor: Quad Core 3.5Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Any DirectX10 capable card.
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Any DirectX Compatible
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.6 or later
    • Processor: Dual Core 2Ghz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Any DirectX 9 level (shader model 2.0) capable card
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Any
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.6 or later
    • Processor: Quad Core 3.5Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Any DirectX10 capable card.
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Any
Helpful customer reviews
54 of 70 people (77%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
7.6 hrs on record
Posted: December 18, 2015
Bedlam should be an incredibly cool game that takes players through a thrilling ride of landmark shooters like Quake, or Medal of Honor while exploring the evolution of video game design. Instead Bedlam mostly just shows us what other great games look like while feeling like a fairly bland shooter itself.

The journey begins when some gamer, known for technical prowess in shooters, realizes that she is in a game. From there, stuff happens and she has to shuffle around to other games. Bedlam tries to explore various video game genre/subgenres but doesn't ever quite commit. The horror game give you some tighter corridors and zombie enemies, but that's similar to the annoying catwalks that fill out the sci-fi inspired shooter levels, and then pretty much every other level just has wide open spaces but with different fillers (tanks in the World War 2 shooter setting, cottages in the fantasy one). Playing through this game is less like actively exploring different games and more like playing a single game with lots of costume changes, which just comes off as weak. Why does a fantasy game feel like Quake-lite, Medal of Honor have no setpieces, and the futuristic shooter have no interesting weapons? Imagine how something as simple as adding a directional damage indicator when jumping into the Medal of Honor section would have been to communicate growth, or adding a regenerating shield in the future settings, mana and light RPG elements in the fantasy setting, and so on, until the player actually feels the difference in settings and genres. Really, the feeling of movement and how resources are managed would have been an easy way to the chart the growth of shooters. It's these little missing details that really would have made the game shine.

None of the mechanics or level designs ever grow, which is a real shame. All the different weapons you get feel pretty much the same and seem to have no qualities attached to them: the crossbow shoots a bit lower and sometimes one of the shotguns feels like it actually hurts enemies more up close, but enemies aren't too picky on what you kill them with so there is hardly any strategy or risk involved. Bedlam doesn't exclusively stick to shooters: there are some levels inspired by Pacman, fantasy RPGs, Warcraft, classic and horizontal shooters.

What probably feels most out of place is the fact that your character is an absolute bullet magnet. Enemies you can hardly see gun you down with pinpoint accuracy so you sometimes just don't have a chance to even see what killed you before you have to reload and hope that you sprint behind cover fast enough to avoid whatever magic bullets are finding you. Due to level design shifting from bland with dull color designs to a nightmarish mess of ramps and platforms full of holes, the AI gets very annoying. However, towards the end of the game, the quasi-platforming steals the show as the most frustrating aspect.

I feel the ending of the game dragged on for a few hours too long. But it probably only felt like that because I was constantly having to reload due to me missing a jump when I just missed it by, who even knows how much, because I cannot see my feet. Platforming without being able to see your feet is like having to race in reverse, or shoot a gun that always fires off-screen. The jump button was also hit or miss on a controller at times. On top of the inaccurate jumping, the game's platforming sections are all designed like a maze with jump pads that are hard to gauge, alternate routes that lead you backwards, platforms full of holes that will drop you sometimes. This is absolutely one of the most annoying combinations I can even imagine. If anything, this should have been the psychological horror section of the game.

The concept is certainly interesting, but the mechanics house little creativity at best and are near-broken at worst. You are better off just popping in the games that Bedlam seeks to emulate. The concept and ambition are there, but too much of what should make Bedlam unique is left at surface level.
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53 of 78 people (68%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
12.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 13, 2015
The short: While the core ideas are great, the uninteresting and uninspired environments, terrible gunplay which never improves, ridiculously accurate and frustrating omniscient AI, and lousy jumping puzzles in a game that is incompetent at platforming, all add up to a tedious and frustrating game experience.

The long:

I really, really wanted to like this game. The idea of going on a journey through the history of gaming within a game is great and one of the reasons I loved the first 3/4 of Evoland, before it became victim itself to the genre characteristics it strove to make fun of (RPGs). This romp-through-gaming-history is what also drew me to Bedlam. Here however, the genres being mocked are early FPS games, which I thought for certain had to be less tedious than the latter parts of Evoland when it reduced down to a grindy RPG. However, the great premise, witty humor and writing in the early parts of the game, and even the Scottish female protagonist could not save Bedlam devolving into yet another exercise in tedium.

The graphics and gunplay in the early part of the game is very basic, but the humor of the situation and the voice exchanges between the protagonist and other game characters were enough to keep me amused and interested to see where things would go. However, after trudging through the levels of this first 'FPS universe', it quickly became apparent that I would have to struggle through the tedious combat and uninspired game environments for longer than I would have liked.

The second game world that is explored in Bedlam seems even less interesting than the first. Lots of buildings and streets full of nothing but empty cloned rooms and textures. The only thing really occupying this world is the AI opponents - which themselves are also boring and repetitive.

Speaking of AI, let me just say this. At all times, as long as you are within a certain radius of the enemies, they will know exactly where you are, even if that happens to be up 3 flights of stairs or behind cover. They are also incredible marksmen and will never miss a target if it stands still for even a split second. This grew annoying very quickly, and while I kept hope that this game logic was just a way to mock early AI systems, nothing in Bedlam's core game behavior ever changed. Things actually get progressively worse as the enemies gain access to better weapons.

Oh and about those weapons! Alright, don't let anyone tell you there is no such thing as having too many weapons. This game proves that, beyond a doubt, you should not have access to every weapon you've come across at any point in time. Not only is it terribly difficult to choose a weapon in later stages of Bedlam due to the overwhelming number you have (especially using a mouse wheel), it is also terribly confusing as to which weapons are more or less powerful than one another. The developers could have easily remedied this situation by restricting access to weapons that are available on any given game 'universe', or at least removing ones that are similar in power to one another.

And now back to the game universes.. I wish I could say that the game worlds that Bedlam visits improve in design, or that the FPS gameplay itself improves, but that would be a lie. Okay, the one 'low gravity' Unreal-Tournament-inspired level was a bit of fun to play, and actually quite hilarious as the voices of angry teens mocked or reacted to my actions. I'd also give props to the 3D PacMan-inspired level if it was actually any fun to play, but it and the Space Invaders level just feel like early unfinished prototypes that were shoehorned in and wind up feeling just like filler. Luckily those two non-canon (FPS-wise) levels are over rather quickly.

The game world that annoyed me the most would probably have to be the 'void' that lay outside of all the game universes you visit. Its this weird fractured landscape that introduces platform jumping puzzles, and really shines a light on just how bad such a thing is inside an FPS game. Sure, there are probably one or two first person games that do this relatively well, but they are the exceptions to a rule. However, Bedlam goes one step further here by introducing a delay between the button-press and the actual jump. Yes, the character actually takes one extra step before jumping, which meant a lot of falling off obstacles to my death. It wouldn't be so bad if this was done only once or twice in the game, or it didn't reset to the beginning of the level, but unfortunately this mechanic is used and reused and becomes a major problem especially on the final levels. Learn to save often if you find yourself braving these areas of the game!

Alas, there's not much saving grace for Bedlam. It has a fun concept. It has good writing and humor in early parts of the game. It has a fairly decent voice actress. And it has one fun level. That's it. Terrible gunplay, AI, level design, and yes jumping puzzles all hamper the experience and make it an overly tedious and frustrating game to play. I'd suggest saving your money or buying this at a discount.
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20 of 28 people (71%) found this review helpful
6.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 21, 2015
In brief: A gimmicky idea that doesn't work and should have stayed a novel.

In boxers: Bedlam is an FPS that explores the idea of jumping between different video games that have come out over the years - specifically First Person Shooters, though a couple of others are thrown in later on - and seeing how art styles have evolved over the years. Oh, and there's a plot about being stuck in a video game world that's being destroyed by glitches and stuff, but whatever.

The biggest problem with this is that although the art styles are really fun to see in how they differ, the gameplay remains exactly the same throughout. It almost never varies no matter which game you're in, whether it be the Quake 2 knock-off, the WW2 Call of Duty knock-off, the Left 4 Dead knock-off, the Planetside knock-off, the Fantasy MMO knock-off, the Civilization knock-off or the Unreal Tournament knock-off. It's almost entirely consistant throughout, and it's a HUGE missed opportunity. There are a few levels which deviate from this (knock-offs of Pac-Man, Space Invaders and... uh, a generic Shmup), but they're short and barely have time to register before you're back into standard shooting.

...oh, did you notice I mentioned knock-offs? Yeah, you're playing through games 'inspired' by classic games of the genre. This wouldn't be an issue if all the other characters you talk to over the radio didn't mention games that actually exist. They're off playing through Rayman, GTA and Lego Batman, while you're stuck in... generic fantasy land. The references just make you feel like you're missing out on what could have been.

"What could have been" is a perfect phrase for this game, to be honest. It's full of missed opportuties that would have made things infinitely more enjoyable. Being able to use guns from one game in another is neat, but there's no ammo for them so you just won't bother. The AI is consistantly frustrating - they're always amazingly accurate with their guns and as a result you'll constantly get shot before you even know they're there. The sections in between levels are just sort of broken platforms in space which feature some VERY questionable platforming (don't jump on the tiny platforms, you'll fall right through them). And every single section is generic, repetitive and drags on for far too long.

If there are positives to be had, then it's in the visdual department. The game LOOKS perfect. Every single style of game is fantastically put together and when they do bleed together it usually looks pretty neat. The audio, on the other hand, is much more mixed. The lead voice actress is pretty good (and Scottish, which is a pleasant change), as is the the titular Bedlam, and the villains are suitably menacing. The other characters... not so much. Their acting leaves something to be desired and never really works, so you're pulled out of every conversation they have.

I tired of this game remarkably quickly and by the end I was practically on my knees BEGGING for it to be over. The game has a neat concept but the poor execution and overlong levels means it vastly outstays its welcome. And the absolute kicker is that the game ends on a sodding "Hey, here's a portal, let's see where it leads" cliffhanger. Because, y'know, I wanna play MORE of this.

Maybe if the developers actually tighten the floaty controls and make the different games FEEL different, I could recommend this. As it is though... I really can't.

Oh, and screw the snipers who turn invisible. ♥♥♥♥♥♥.
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24 of 36 people (67%) found this review helpful
5.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 14, 2015
I haven't been this down on a game in a while. The fast pace is alright, but everything after the first stage just blows. The level design and firefights just get progressively worse, and it all culminates in one of crappiest end stages I've played in a FPS. The game is also really buggy, and I can't tell if it's intentional or not due to its "ironic" nature. The music is just plain sterile. The genre-jumping story is about as original as the games it satirizes, and the writing is wretched. Seriously, The game is just inundated in this sterile "haha us gamers huh?" humor that makes me wanna hang myself more than I already do.

I really don't like this game. Don't buy it, not even during a sale. You'll just play it for five hours and never look at it again. That's five hours you can put into a ♥♥♥♥ing actually good game like Doom or something.
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17 of 24 people (71%) found this review helpful
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 14, 2015
Pre-Release Review
This game was made to tug at your late 90's nostalgia gaming strings. Expect a lot of nostalgia video game references. It's a decent game, nothing special though.

- Fast paced FPS gameplay
- A lot of cool weapons
- Doesnt take itself too seriously
- Has a lot of different levels and "worlds"
- Cute scottish-girl protagonist

-Gunplay is sluggish
-Dont expect high production values
-Has a few "gamergirl" cringe moments, clearly written to voice the developer's opinion on girl power and all that
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