Summary (TL;DR): The game is OK. It will (probably) scare you and give you the feeling a horror game should. But if you’re in for a storyline or interesting/innovative gameplay then you’re going to be disappointed with the game.
So I just finished playing this game, so my opinion might be heavily influenced by how the game ended. I will try not to spoil anything in the opener, and talk about the game mechanics first.
Sound: So at first the sound in the game is alright, the music is there to creep you out and create an atmosphere. However, the music is constantly there and it feels out of place at most times. At times, the music will get intense as well, and loud noises will come out of nowhere, which again feels out of place most of the time and is overused in my opinion. There are a lot of sounds that are there to disturb you, example at times you’ll hear footsteps near you, or someone “Psst”-ing. Personally I don’t think these are out of place and makes sense to use, and they aren’t really overused to the point where they become an annoyance
Graphics: Graphics were okay, I don’t have anything to add to this since I didn’t really expect AAA game graphics in the first place. Some textures were weird, but it’s nothing to really focus on.
Gameplay: Gameplay wasn’t that interesting. Opening the same doors to the same rooms every day, trying to find out which room is going to have any “Action” or events happening in them is not as interesting as it may sound. It was alright the first couple of days when there weren’t that many rooms to look through, but once you unlock almost every door it gets irritating to put up with, because the game basically requires that you re-visit every room every day. If you run around confused for a prolonged time, the person you’re controlling will give you a clue, which is nice, but I still feel like it’s annoying that you have to walk around every room all the time.
Level-design: The level design isn’t TOO bad, but it does fall short on some parts. Some rooms connect weirdly, though it does help you getting around the house easily once you have all the doors opened. Still, it’s an annoyance walking around, and you will often find yourself being lost in all the rooms that you can visit, and will probably miss some every now and then. That being said, the rooms were nicely decorated and they helped with the atmosphere.
Atmosphere: So I guess we can all agree that atmosphere is the most important thing in a horror game, and Pineview does get away with it pretty nicely I’d say. There are the annoyingly repetitive sounds I mentioned earlier, but if you look past that, the game does succeed in having that horror feel to it. Some of the props helped nicely and were put to good use. Overall I’d say that Pineview does capture a good scary atmosphere and there’s not a lot to really touch on here.
Story [No spoilers]
: So I decided to split this up in to two, because the story annoys me to no end. It starts off by the main person arriving to the house where some stuff has gone down. Linda, the wife I’m assuming, has died in the house and “No one has survived in the house for 30 days” and you have to find out what happened to Linda. Simple stuff, though from there the story kind of falls short, and I can’t go in to detail without spoiling the game, but you basically find letters scattered around the house that tells you what has been going on in the house back when the incident with Linda happened. That’s it, that’s the basic storyline.
: Right, so moving on, this is where the game falls short and REALLY disappoints me. Note that this section will spoil the entire “Surprise” of the game, so read with caution. During the game you find some notes which help you finding out what happened to Linda, and you find notes explaining what has been going on around the house, like the clown being moved around and then appearing in its original place, and that Linda had been hearing strange noises in the house. Though, the notes doesn’t seem to tell all that much until you start gathering the pieces of a picture, which then reminds the main person about a doll. A doll that is evil, and, assumingly, is buried with Linda. On day 29 you gain access to the cemetery, and enter Linda’s tomb, and in that tomb you’re going to face the game’s biggest disappointment. You’d expect everything to be cleared up, an open ending, or some sort of explanation as to why the house is being haunted, why the clown is moving around, why the scarecrow will chase you, why the shadows of the girls appear at random times or get to know something about Linda’s death. But no. The game ends weirdly, abruptly and in a very strange fashion. As you walk in Linda’s tomb you suddenly find a machine. There’s no explanation as to what this machine does, and you have to turn it on. Once you do, the game ends with a video which I assume is a continued version of the video in the very beginning of the game. This still clears nothing at all, and the machine still feels weirdly out of place.
Edit: This is the first time I have actually taken my time to write a lenghty review for a game, and I would love some feedback. Thanks in advance