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Outlast is a first person horror game that borrows from the classic Amnesia, and seasons itwith new features that give it some personality.
In Outlast you must survive the madness of violence and death that prevail in an abandoned asylum. With an acceptable plot, really good controls and plenty of butt-clenching moments, Outlast promisesto be the scariest game ever created. But is it?(function() { (‘review-app-page-desktop’); });

Blood, guts and gore

Outlast is scary – at first. The game does well at getting you into the shoes of the protagonist, Miles Upshur, and making sure you have a hard time (which is kind of the point). The story is a common one, but it’s very effective on screen, especially for the many realistic scenes of blood and gore. Outlast is not a game for the fainthearted: its gross, its violent and really gets under your skin.
Now, Outlast makes the one mistake you should never make in any horror game: routine. The first time everything is new, terrifying, unpleasant and distressing, and it truly is a scary game, the sort that makes your hair stand on end and your pulse race. But afterthe first impact, Outlast slips into routine. Its “scare” resources run out prettyfast and so every challenge in the game is a slight variation onthe above, which means that theyre overcome inalmost the same way each time too:Go there, activatea button or lever, and repeat.
Outlast is a very linear Its rare to find a section of the game where you move freely, open doors or enter rooms that you shouldnt. This linearity has two clear objectives: the first is to keep you scared. If the game didnthave control over what you do or where you go, it couldnt activate certain unexpected events thatmake you jump out of yourchair.
The second effect of this linearity is that if you look thoroughly at Outlast youllsee that it is just a giant puzzle. Each section of the game has a specific order, and if you dont do it that way then you probably wont survive. Finding the invisible path – the bit that involves crawling on all fours, hidingin lockers or under beds, dodging deformedenemies or running for your life in intense chases – is the key to progressing through the game.
Outlast isnt trying to(or doesnt manage to) psychologically terrorize you beyond that first hour. Once youre past thisinitial trauma, Outlast is just about guts, blood andmutilation, accompanied with multiple frights, all the while at top, terrifying volume.
This isnt necessarily a bad thing because, among other things, Outlast knows when to activate these sequences and make you scream for your mommy. But unlike other games like Amnesia (pretty much the reference game for the genre) where youre truly gripped by fearthroughout the game environment and the plot, Outlast is just going for easy BOO! SCARED YOU! moments.

Realistic movement

One of the highlights ofOutlast is the controls and how they affectthe game. Although it plays likeany other first person game, our movements on the screen are very realistic: how the body sways, our hands support us on thefloor or round corners, how we run and look back, All the controls transmitrealism, human movement, and put you firmly in the shoes of poor Miles.
A video camera will be your only tool in the game. It serves to let you see in the dark through its infrared mode, but the batteries run out when you use it and you must find replacements through the level. The use of the camera offers many agonizing moments in Outlast, although its unlikely that youll run out of battery because the game balances the difficulty level with giving youbatteries when you need them most.

Remarkable graphics and powerful sound

Outlast uses Unreal Engine 3. It’s well used and generally very good. Even better, any midrange computer can push it to itslimits, but still enjoy excellent performance.
The game combineslight and shadow and the infrared camera to excellent effect (the camera filteris very realistic). The blood on the walls, the dead bodies scattered about the place, the guts – as well assome of the nicer things youll see on your travels – are also worth mentioning.
Overall, Outlast has some remarkable graphics, which are overshadowed by irritating little problems which are typical of Unreal Engine 3, like physical objects not existing (those curtains that look like walls … aarrgh!)
When it comes to sound -the real star of all horror games -Outlast is very strong. Dialogs are terrifying, with otherworldly voices and screams, footsteps, things breaking, all focused on giving you a terrifying experience.

Conclusion

Outlast is a great game for scaring the bits out of you, and has moments thatll take you a while toforget. The whole production is quite remarkable, and although its a very linear game, it doesnt take away from the excellent level design. The controls and some of the scenes really stand out.
Is Outlast the best horror game of all time? In the end it depends whos playing it and how sensitive they are. But in any case, if you like the genre you should definitely give it atry.

Outlast

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