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Until Dawn

Until Dawn PS4

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#1 Virgil Vox

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Posted 25 August 2015 - 06:49 PM

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I bought Until Dawn today. It feels like I've been waiting for this game forever. I've only played a small amount because I'm waiting until it's well and truly dark before I get into it. Still, I thought I'd start a thread and post my initial impressions.

So far, it's like playing a horror film. It opens with a group of friends partying at a lodge in the mountains. The friends play a prank on a shy girl and she ends up running out into the snow, with her sister chasing after her. They're never seen again. Cut to a year later, and the friends are once again meeting at that lodge on the cold, isolated mountain. Obviously things aren't going well.

Sure, the plot's kind of generic so far but it works. The game has focused on fleshing the characters out and showing their dynamics to one another. They all don't get along, that's for sure. The characters are stereotypes at the moment, but the actors help elevate them above that. Hayden Panettiere, Brett Dalton, Rami Malek, Peter Stormare, and several others lend their looks and voices to the characters.

So far the game reminds me of Heavy Rain and Beyond Two Souls in how the mechanics are. You control the character (switching between all the characters at various points) and interact with items in your surroundings. When it comes time for more complicated actions like climbing a wall or running away from something, QTEs take over. I'm fine with that kind of gameplay but not I know it's not everyone's cup of tea.

Choice has been touted as a big mechanic of the game, and I've seen it in action. Early on I had Sam go snooping through Chris's phone and he caught her. A bit after that, Chris steals a letter out of another girl's hands and says it's okay because Sam did the same thing to him.

It's not just how characters react to the choices you make. Depending on what you have a character say or do, or not say or do, will affect how the character's perceive each other. To see how a character is perceived you just have to go to the pause menu and it lists all the characters with a green bar showing how much they like or dislike you. I'm guessing if they don't like you that much then they might not come to your rescue.

The game is broken up into chapters, and between the chapters you're treated to a psychiatrist trying to find out your deepest fears. At first he shows you a picture and asks if it frightens you. If it does, he asks why. Later he gives you a book to flip through with pictures of various scary things like snakes, spiders, gore, etc. and asks you to point out the ones that scare you the most. It's pretty cool and I'm hoping the game will tailor itself to my fears to make for a more frightening experience.
"You will give the people an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you. They will stumble. They will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders."
--Jor-El


It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job: it's a depression when you lose yours.
-- Harry S. Truman

#2 Niko

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Posted 26 August 2015 - 05:46 PM

This seems like a game I'll enjoy a lot, but it's not the "will buy the system just to play the game" game for me.  I was the same way with Hard Rain and the PS3... by the time I bought the system, the game was available for cheap.  ;)
- Whatsoever you do to the least of my people, that you do unto me.    (Matthew 25:40)

- Do not let kindness and truth leave you; Bind them around your neck, Write them on the tablet of your heart.  (Proverbs 3:3)

#3 Virgil Vox

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Posted 27 August 2015 - 12:28 AM

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This seems like a game I'll enjoy a lot, but it's not the "will buy the system just to play the game" game for me.  I was the same way with Hard Rain and the PS3... by the time I bought the system, the game was available for cheap.  ;)

This game, along with InFamous: Second Son, Kingdom Hearts III, The Order: 1886, and Uncharted 4 were the reasons I bought a PS4. So far I haven't been disappointed. InFamous and The Order were both great games, even though I might be the only one who thinks that about The Order.

I've played quite a bit more of Until Dawn and it's been fantastic. The game has a major twist that I really didn't see coming that changes things quite a bit. I won't go into details so as not to spoil anything but I was pretty happy with the twist and how it changed things up.

What I'm not happy with is that my choices have gotten four characters killed so far. One I really have no idea what I should have done different to avoid it. I'm pretty sure I know why another character died though I'm not sure how I could change it. I think I do but there's no way to test it out until I start a new game. The third death felt pretty cheap. There are parts of the game where you have to keep the controller completely still and that's hard to do. I usually just put it on my knee and that works. Here though the icon to remain still popped up out of nowhere and basically didn't even give me a chance to stay still. The fourth death I know exactly why this character died.

My choices have had an impact on the game. Obviously certain characters are dead so whatever they would have brought to the game at this point no longer exists. One character sacrificing a flare that could have later been used as a weapon led to that character getting injured, which later led to a whole new scenario. It will be interesting to go back and see how different choices affect the game and how it might change with these characters still being alive.

The game has done a good job of creating an atmosphere of tension with some genuinely good scares and heart pounding action. I wouldn't say it's the scariest game I've ever played but it is still pretty freaky.

The characters have changed as the game has progressed as they react to what has transpired and the deaths of their friends. It's interesting because one character I really liked did something based on a previous action I had another character do and now I can't stand that character and kind of hope they bite the big one.

I think I'm pretty close to the end of the game. I believe I will have it finished tomorrow night. I might start a second play through immediately to see what changes and to find more of the clues that are scattered throughout the game. I've found a decent amount but not as many as I would like.
"You will give the people an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you. They will stumble. They will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders."
--Jor-El


It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job: it's a depression when you lose yours.
-- Harry S. Truman



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