Based on many stories of actual encounters, this survival horror game tests whether you can keep it together, solve problems, avoid danger and escape with your soul. A dynamic, story driven adventure that will scare you.
User reviews: Mostly Positive (46 reviews)
Release Date: Sep 18, 2014
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Buy The Hat Man: Shadow Ward

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$14.99
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Recent updates View all (6)

September 18

The Hat Man Releases 1.0

Ten months after our first exposure to the public, we are releasing version 1.0. The game has added a ton of new features. We got so busy we did not even have time to post updates. This is huge.

In case you did not know, there have been only two of us working on the game for the last 10 months. We did it all by ourselves with the help of our Kickstarter and Early Access supporters.

And we are not done yet. We will be listening to feedback and making improvements as we go. Here is part of the list of the latest improvements, many of which were requested by players:

  • Save points.
  • You can play as the Mother or Father
  • Voice overs and subtitles for the parents
  • More puzzles
  • Shadow People now appear all over watching you
  • New rooms
  • New furniture
  • The look changes as you progress
  • More cinematic sequences
  • Support for game controllers
  • Steam Achievements
  • More...
Have fun digging around for all the "More..." it is not hard to find. And sometimes it will find you!

8 comments Read more

June 21

The Hat Man Beta 0.8.5 Uploaded

The Hat Man: Shadow Ward - This was a slightly unplanned update, but we found that under certain circumstances the elevator got broken and not on purpose. If you saw it, you are lucky! It did not happen often, but it was so late in the game we had to fix it.

So you get a new room and some new graphics free!

We are planning a bigger update for next week that will have more.

Thanks for your support. The Summer Sale is going great for us. Spread the word. This is going to be huge!

1 comments Read more

About This Game

After attempting suicide, your daughter is assigned to an asylum for the insane in hopes they can keep her from harming herself. You receive a telegram informing you that somehow she has gone missing. When you arrive to look for her you realize that everyone is missing including the staff and patients. If someone is going to find her, it is going to have to be you.

Set more than 50 years ago, the game tells bits and pieces of real stories of encounters with the Hat Man and the Shadow People. These are not made up, they are documented in books and postings all over the Internet. This is your chance to see how you would match up against them.

This is a scary, dynamic, story driven survival horror game where you are propelled into the nightmare world of the Hat Man and must use all your skills to escape. You will discover an environment that is created and destroyed as you are playing. There is no map. A room you just came from may be gone when you go back. And every decision you make matters. There are no extra lives or power ups to help you. You die, you go back to the last save point or start again. Your skills and ingenuity are the only thing that can get you through. All this is backed by a story line that explains why you are here and why it is even more important that you succeed. It is not just about you anymore.

  • Based on real encounters
  • Unsettling atmosphere of images and sound
  • A story that you become a part of
  • Dynamic map means no memorization and infinite replay
  • Puzzling moments that require some thought to solve
  • Optimized to be played in super hi-res
  • No extra lives, no power ups, no mercy

Can you play it without jumping and swearing? We don't think so.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP/Vista/7
    • Processor: 2.0Ghz - Low budget CPUs such as Celeron or Duron needs to be at about twice the CPU speed
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Radeon X1000/GeForce 6 - Integrated graphics and low budget cards might not work.
    • Hard Drive: 250 MB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.5.8 or newer
    • Processor: 2.0Ghz
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Radeon X1000/GeForce 6 - Integrated graphics and low budget cards might not work.
    • Hard Drive: 250 MB available space
Helpful customer reviews
2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 22
I don't know why I buy horror games. This one is like the others: It scares the **** out of me. I've only played about 15 minutes worth as I write this review, and this game doesn't even use the "sounds" scare technique that works so well on me (things suddenly appearing after a period prolonged period of silence and screeching or screaming etc. ... gets me every time). You might like this game if you like feeling scared. This one literally gives me the chills.
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
I was a Kickstarter supporter. This game started out as a Slender clone and has added so much more. Originally the pages were just there to be picked up. Now they tell a story. I think the problem some reviewers are having Is that they don't "read" the pages. The game definitely has a flow. If you play it like a FPS you will be disappointed.

Could it be better? Yeah. But it is an indie title and a good one at that. This is a great game that you should definitely pick up when it goes on sale. It is worth the full price but only if you play it as it was intended. It is a lousy FPS but a great survival horror game. I jumped even the third and fourth times I played it.
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1 of 8 people (13%) found this review helpful
1.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
Naja....
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150 of 197 people (76%) found this review helpful
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: June 26
Early Access Review
Even on sale this game was not worth my money. It goes with the totally untaken path of "collect the pages!" which totaly has never been used before. The "hat man" only appeared once over my two attempts and when he did he moved so slowly that I could crouch and walk backwards and still outrun him. The horror aspects of the game were very bland, if there is a wheelchair, get close to it and it creeks and moves. Flickering celing pannel? Gonna drop in front of you. Radio? gonna activate! The "story you can be a part of" is just finding diary pages and reading them and they all are basicly the same thing. The worst part is if you want 1080p 30FPS sorry, we can only give you an unstable 20 FPS. I had to degrade the quality of my Alienware computer to 800 x 600 to get a FPS above 30, and at that level the game was too fzzy for me too stand for longer then a minute. This game is not worth the money even on sale. This game might be worth it if it were free and even then Teletubbies is a scarier thing to watch. One other thing, I have explored all that I can of the asylum and the only place I can't explore is a hallway blocked by a gap in the floor that YOU CANT JUMP OVER!!! Both of my tries ended with me falling into that pit out of boredom because I wanted to end the game and I couldn't find the hatman to kill me.
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81 of 124 people (65%) found this review helpful
1.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
Early Access Review
Not that scary, im disappointed :(
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24 of 30 people (80%) found this review helpful
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 22
Here are my main gripes:

Has potential, but I feel like I was ripped off when I paid 14.99 for a 250mb game. I feel like a 4.99 price tag would be more appropriate.

The voice acting is painful. I'm pretty forgiving of things like this, but wow. It actually made the game less scary because some of the comments were very out of place and sarcastic. When you're doing a horror game, the feeling needs to be raw with genuine fear. How are we supposed to be afraid if you aren't?

I don't feel like I have enough time to sit and listen to the journal entries. Whenever I try to listen to or read one so I can learn about the story, hatman comes and kills me. I don't know if this is a glitch or normal, but I can't learn about the story if I get killed every time I'm reading the journal. I really wanna know what's going on with the lady's daughter but I still haven't much of a clue as to what's going on in the asylum.

Here is what I liked:

Running around collecting pages/piecing together a story.

Some folks feel like it's too bright, but I disagree. You can't have shadows without light.

When the bad voice acting wasn't ruining my immersion, I was actually scared of the hatman and rushing through the asylum trying to find everything without dying. Though I wish he was a little less agressive so that I could have more time to explore and see the rooms/read journals.

So with all of this being said, I'm still trying to complete the game. These are just my opinions for right now and may likely change.
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66 of 110 people (60%) found this review helpful
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
Early Access Review
Terrible, broken game... but for the price you pay, it's about what you expect.
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12 of 16 people (75%) found this review helpful
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 21
As someone who loves to be frightened by jump scares and suspense games I decided to get the game. There were very few bad reviews and many more good reviews and the video looked amazing.

Sadly I didn't find this game very scary at all, it could have been so much more than it is.
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10 of 14 people (71%) found this review helpful
2.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 7
I played a game like this back in April, called Daylight.
While that game seems to have had a higher budget, they both accomplish the same thing fairly effectively. The gameplay is quite similar.

Basically you need to find the pages of the daughter's journal in a randomly generated hospital-shaped maze... which redraws itself.
While you do this, there is a creature called "Hatman" who tries to catch you.
There are also smaller shadow-people which can be banished with a flashlight.
The catch is: Using the flashlight attracts the Hatman.

Not a bad game, and it tries to do a few things that are quite difficult to do. Mostly get things to happen in the right order, with the player looking in the right place at the right time... without forcing them to.
As with Daylight, the results are mixed. Mind you I am not aware of any game which has pulled that off without issues.
A fun ride, if a bit short... which is good otherwise you'd become used to it.
Don't look too hard at it and just enjoy the playthrough. Sort of like a made-for-TV horror movie.
Popcorn optional.
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6 of 8 people (75%) found this review helpful
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 13
This game has a scary atmosphere and sound effects, but voice acting is fairly cheesy (hearing someone say "Hoooooolyyyy" really takes away from the scare experience). The Hat Man is fairly slow and rarely seems like a threat. You have many vents and spots where you could hide from him, but I never had to use any of them.

Game is fairly short (40 minutes to beat it my first time), so the price tag is questionable. Not worth it unless it is on sale or they fix the slow and buggy Hat Man A.I..
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4 of 7 people (57%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 9
This game gave me some good scares. I like that the building reconfigures itself as you expore it, adding to the horror.
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3 of 6 people (50%) found this review helpful
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Playing this game from the begginign and even through the updates, it has been a dissapointment. The over all story isn't bad, it still needs a lot of work, but the main problems are this; its pretty much just another slenderman-styled game in terms of objective and enemies, the graphics are not that great, it is way too predictable, the hatman himself is a poor adversary and too slow, even in the updates, and he is not scary. In fact the hatman looks like a darker version of the Hatbox Ghost from Disney's Haunted Mansion. It would have been much wiser to replace the tophat with a fedora and made him look like the infamous shadow man seen throughout man decades by many people. I do not recomend getting this game unless it is given out for free or it is sold for at least $0.99. One would be better off buying a slenderman game and playing it for the slenderman would be far scarier and more panic inducing. Developers of this game, I appreciate the effort to bring in a new character to the horror game scene, but you just made remade the same game that we all have been playing for far too long.
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0 of 1 people (0%) found this review helpful
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 19
Absolutely terribe, i stood next to the hat man for literally 5 minutes before the jump scare
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5 of 13 people (38%) found this review helpful
1.8 hrs on record
Posted: September 23
While I can suggest this title for people looking for a good horror game, with how short it is I wouldn't suggest picking it up unless it's on sale. Now that it's gone into full release, it defintely has more meat on it but it can still be beaten relatively quickly in an hour or even less. There's even achievements encouraging you to run through as quickly as possible.
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22 of 54 people (41%) found this review helpful
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: June 8
Early Access Review
I started off as a Kickstarter backer with the Pre-Alpha and I have to admit even though the game back then was "Collect these pages and then run for your life" the atmosphere was more than enough to keep me curious in the games development.

Then suddenly the game morphed between versions, BOOM! story line, key items, darker environment. I was suprised to say the least.

I strongly recommend this game if you are willing to deal with a few minor glitches. . .if not I recommend wating until the final version drops and then getting the game.

Happy hunting!
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8 of 25 people (32%) found this review helpful
10.5 hrs on record
Posted: June 28
Early Access Review
From start to finish this game delivers. Controlls are smooth and graphics are really great even on lower end comps.Love the ambiance and all visuals flow well to keep you moving and second guessing.I tried to just run through and complete this without sound and still CREEPY AS you know what!! A well done and thought out game. Even when you think your safe your not.
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9 of 28 people (32%) found this review helpful
0.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 7
Early Access Review
This is the first game that made me scream in genuine fear
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8 of 26 people (31%) found this review helpful
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: June 30
Early Access Review
Well I may not have played this game very much, but I can safely say thats because of how terrifying it is. I end up playing through slow cause of the atmosphere. This usually doesnt happen to me, but this game managed to do it. Good job.
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9 of 29 people (31%) found this review helpful
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: June 20
Early Access Review
the face on the book cover is scary:(
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17 of 47 people (36%) found this review helpful
1.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 11
Early Access Review
This game is utterly terrifying. The first time I played this I thought it would be just one of those boring repetitive jump scare games, but I was wrong. The build up towards your death is the most terrifying; not the death itself, as the loud ghostly noises, the creepy whispering when you get close to the journals, the sounds of the hat man crawling above you; rattling the ceiling panels or a wheel chair ghostly pushed makes you think that he's right around the corner, behind you or in a door way which keeps you on edge throughout.

The thing that I would like to be improved on is when the hat man finally pops up, as for me it wasn't that scary since he appeared at the end of the corridor where I could easily see him and didn't even chase me. So to improve on this you should make him appear from behind you, grab you through a missing celling panel or try and grab you though a toilet, as there are so many of them. Also it would be awesome if you added flares to light up rooms that you don't want to go in and make the torch flicker or go out to add even more scares.

Just to say this is an early access game; it won't be a fully perfect game, so don't buy this if you’re looking for a finished game and just wait until it comes out. But honestly this game is so worth getting if you love indie horror games and is just amazing, to say that it’s an early access game.
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