Verfasst: 15. August 2014
Dreadout is a great freshman effort at crafting a new Indie 3rd person survival horror game. It is not a perfect or even a long game, even with the promised 2nd Act still in production, but what is there is pretty damn unsettling and creepy. You just wish there was more of it.
Going in its favor is the great atmosphere of a small Indonesian village (which you only get to explore a tiny portion of) and a school. The Indonesian language shows up all over the school, lending it just enough familiarity and exotic flair for those of us who grew up on horror games set in the States. Adding to this are the ghosts you encounter, of which there are a small number. It isn't like Fatal Frame where you keep encountering 'filler' ghosts that respawn when you get stuck and are circling throughout a level.
Much has been said of the frustrating bosses in this game, but whether they've tweaked them or nerfed them or I just got lucky, neither of them gave me too much trouble, although the last boss's strategy did get annoying, even with the hints you get upon dying from her to tell you what to do.
Just how does a phone camera have the power to stop the undead? I dunno, but I'm glad it works for the most part. Sometimes you wish it took pictures faster so you could nail a ghost's weakspot, especially the one you do find in the school that wanders around on the second floor.
The graphics range between impressive and late era PS2, which shouldn't be looked at as a flaw. I enjoyed them. The sound design works well and instills more of the creepy atmosphere.
The voice work is miss and hit. It doesn't have any standout lines like "A Jill sandwich", but thankfully it's limited to the beginning when the students are all milling about. It's probably for the best that all the kids disappear; they undermine the horror more than help it.
I hope Digital Happiness continues to make horror games and to refine their experiences. If you want to play this game, play the demo first; the demo is, oddly, a unique experience and works more like a free prologue to the game you buy. The demo's content isn't cut and paste from the main game and works better at instilling horror than the main game does.
If you know what you're doing, the game will last around 2 hours, but there are a number of achievements to track down and collect which can help extend the game's life. It's no Fatal Frame but it earns high marks for trying.