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Bethesda gave PewDiePie some exclusive hands-on play time with their upcoming horror title, The Evil Within. The game is being made by the legendary Shinji Mikami and his new team at Tango Gameworks. For those of you who don't know, Mikami is considered to be the godfather of the horror-survival genre, and helped put Capcom heavily on the map with his Resident Evil titles.
Speaking of Resident Evil, The Evil Within carries a lot of strong similarities to Resident Evil 4. The atmosphere and gameplay style mirror the original GameCube title in a lot of ways, especially the slowed gameplay pace, so players are spending more time surveying the area and getting a grasp on the atmosphere. The shooting is also more reliant on trying to hold your ground while attempting to get in well-placed, targeted shots on enemies.
Whether you like PewDiePie or not (and he does make $4 million in profit every year, by the way) you at least have to appreciate the horror themes present in the game. His incessant shouting and talking could be distracting for a lot of gamers, but in a few segments he does genuinely seem to reflect on the situations the way the average viewer would. His general horror at the mutli-armed patient who crawls out of a pool of blood in the floor seems terribly appropriate, and his very close call with getting through the room with the rapidly shutting door came across as more genuine than the voice actor playing detective Sebastian Castellanos.
There are a few things, though, that really stood out gameplay wise: running from some of the enemies seems like a great idea, but Castellanos doesn't appear to be in the greatest shape ever. The guy eventually starts to languish with his movements and – after a short sprint down several corridors – even stops, clearly exasperated to the point where he can't run anymore. Small elements like this help give the game a far more realistic nature than the infinite-sprint featured in some other titles, or having ammo always accessible; it was a problem that plagued the newer Resident Evil titles – save for the first-half of Leon's campaign in Resident Evil 6, which I thought was mapped out and paced absolutely perfectly.
The graphics in the game look good enough; the atmosphere is conveyed with striking depth. It's easy to make out the horrors of the location, even without PewDiePie taking time to actually look at some of the more disturbing elements of his surroundings (such as the giant bloody pile of viscera in the room where he has to trudge through a pool of blood).
The immediate atmosphere made apparent to the player begs them to react to the horrors that lie ahead (or around them), as the game seems to be designed to keep you on the edge of your seat. Whether or not it'll be able to maintain that from start to finish – and whether or not it will maintain the replay values to warrant another go around – is entirely up in the air for now.
You can look for The Evil Within to launch on October 14th in North America after the release date was moved up, for home consoles and PC. For more info feel free to visit the official website.