Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Jason versus Until Dawn (PS4)

OK, first stab at putting thoughts down on a video game. But PS4's Until Dawn is so much like an interactive TV show or movie that this shouldn't be too hard. Video games sure have come a long way from Donkey Kong and Pong!

But does shockingly realistic character design, easy playability and a compelling -- to me at least -- storyline make for a good game? Stick with me!

Long story short, yes. This game hooked me from the first few minutes of game play. Until Dawn is beautiful to look at. Mind blowing, really. The characters are 100-per-cent believable in terms of realization AND personality. I'm pretty sure these are motion captured performers who also lend their voices. Given that notable actors Peter Stormare, Larry Fessenden, Rami Malik and Hayden Panettiere are among the cast, I'm going with a big yes on that.

Fessenden is also listed as co-writer. The man is no stranger to horror, as he's lent his pen, directorial chops and acting talent to such genre flicks as Wendigo, You're Next and We Are Still Here. It's no surprise Until Dawn is such a fine piece of genre entertainment.

I'm only a few hours in, but this is a classic party-at-a-cabin-in-the-woods-that-goes-wrong scenario with some kind of unwanted guest showing up. There's been a few good scares so far and the atmosphere is bone chilling, and not just because it takes place during an Alberta winter.

The game's most unique feature so far is The Butterfly Effect. Decisions you make and the way you solve clues and puzzles impact how the game plays out. So you can technically never play the game the same way twice. I also dig how the player isn't responsible for just one character, but gets to play all eight of them. It's pretty rad, and not as complicated as it sounds.

Until Dawn has taken over the majority of my free time these last few days, and that's something no game has done before. I can't wait to get back at 'er!

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