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At this year's E3, I got the opportunity to demo Outlast II and what I found was that despite a setting change and some new characters, the game really wasn't going to be all that different than its predecessor. Just briefly watch the gameplay from GameSpot below.
What's great about these games is you are guaranteed to get the shit scared out of you. And Red Barrels knows exactly what they are doing when it comes to scaring their fans. While I played the demo at E3, I was wearing headphones and every time I got scared shitless, I jumped and people behind me laughed. Yeah...you just wait until it's your turn.
But one thing I immediately noticed in Outlast II is this isn't any different than the first Outlast. Yes, you are in a new setting with new goons lurking around, ready to whack you in the head or stab you in the heart. But it's the same game. You get caught up in these chases where you are unarmed and you must rely on your instincts to hide, and of course this is the part of the game where I do the worst, running into chairs and stumbling over stuff on the ground, only to be caught by the goon and killed.
I had a bit of a sour taste in my mouth after the last game royally screwed me. I was at the end of the game and had finally made it outside the asylum walls when my camera ran out of battery...outside...in the dark. And if you've played Outlast, then you know playing in the dark is utterly impossible. I couldn't find batteries. I couldn't finish the game. I was beyond pissed. And if Outlast II is going to be that same kind of gameplay, I'm not sure it'll be on my list of favorites this year.
And I mean I don't really expect the second game in the series to be that different from the first. It is a sequel after all. But I'm tired of Outlast's cheap thrills and repetitive gameplay. Always running to hide or being stealthy (stealth is not my strong suit). I just don't think Outlast and I were meant to be together. While I thrive on survival horror games that entail a deep and engaging narrative and atmospheric terror, Outlast provides a loose story with an emphasis on effective jump-scares and a fear of the dark. I am hoping Red Barrels takes what they've learned from _Outlast _and uses it to create something fresh and even more horrifying.