IntroductionWithdraw any applications you may have for Pizza Hut or Papa John's to be a delivery driver, because this game will forever change your acceptance of those job prospects. It's a walking simulator of what could be in store for you. Curiosity is strong with your character as stepping into an abandoned house would be on everyone's list of "things to never do." Emily and her three creepy 4-foot dolls want to play with you, but you don't have the option to say no. Survive the night, or at least prolong your death as much as possible. It will gradually get more difficult as every passing hour means a twist in the gameplay. If you think one doll prowling around the house in search of you sounds beyond scary and suspenseful, wait until the friends join in. You can buy the game on PlayStation Store or Steam for $4.99, or iOS for $2.99.
StoryThe introduction to the story is slightly unexplained in-game, but I'll summarize it a bit for you. You are a pizza delivery guy, working for Checkers Pizza. As it nears 11 pm, you arrive at the last stop on your delivery route for the night. Rushing from your car to the door, and with the rainstorm bearing down aggressively on top of you, your patience to wait around is running low. Regardless of the uncut yard, boarded up windows, and unnerving silence you receive when asking who had ordered the pizza, you decide to step inside. SLAM! The door shuts behind you and in a panic, you look back at it. As the lights over the entrance begin to flicker, you catch a glimpse of someone small standing in front of you. And just as quickly as you had seen it, it disappears. The doors nearby begin to crack open, the lights flickering, and a little girl begins giggling... what did you get yourself into?
GameplayWalking around the house is a constant dread. At any turn (or flick of a light switch) you could catch that spine-chilling glimpse of something crawling behind furniture, or standing in a corner or doorway. At the press of a button, you are able to interact with a good amount of objects throughout the more or less abandoned house. The most important things being opening and closing doors, and the flipping the light switches in the rooms. Occasionally the powers at large will turn off a light. Luckily, the game provides a soft glow to the switches, allowing you to see them across the room if you are courageous enough to make the dash to them.
Alongside the things that you can interact with, you'll find televisions, computers, recording devices, and notes helping to depict the traumatic events that recently happened involving the people of the home. Also, and probably most important of all, you'll be able to find a flashlight, handy for more than obvious reasons.
The house is average in perspective to what a house should be, but the game does a great job at making it not feel claustrophobic in feeling. The rooms, and all the boxes and knocked over furniture, still allow a large amount of space to move around when you need to and often times I even got spun around. You can investigate places like the kitchen, bedrooms, living room, garage, basement, etc.
While the game doesn't give you tasks to follow, or some linear pathways to move throughout the house, it does encourage you to investigate an active room where a door has cracked open, or movements inside. Surely any sign of activity is something you want to get closer to. Right? The antagonists in the game are unique to themselves. They have their own characteristics such sounds and way you must defend against them. You'll learn who to run away from or who you must stand still against. As you discover them or pass them, they'll freak you the hell out in their own ways (no spoilers allowed).
Sounds and GraphicsAll of the noises you'll hear are pretty expected. That doesn't make them any less eerie or dreadful when you hear them, though. Doors creaking open or slamming shut, lights flickering as you pray they don't click off completely, the scurrying of dolls running in and out of the rooms, or the worst of them all, when Emily giggles as if everyone is having fun (No Emily. You're definitely the only who thinks me peeing my pants is funny). The storming rain outside adds nicely to the overall ambiance. Oh, and keep an ear out for the grandfather clock striking every hour on the hour notifying you when things are about to get even crazier.
Graphics is a package of mixed perspectives. The sole creator of the game did a great job with making the game. The characters are horrifying and the house looks beautifully indie. While you won't find a quality of graphics up to compete with major AAA games, they still do amazing for what the game is as a whole. The dolls and Emily herself are made well enough to not be taken as a joke, but the true positive regarding the graphics is found in the amazing light/shadow effects on all objects. It's what makes the game so smooth and immersive. You can see in the pictures included in this review how realistic it all makes the game feel.
ConclusionAn obvious must-have for any gamers collection. The value for the price is a great deal, especially if you end up finding it on sale for even less. If you are not a fan of horror games, it's still worth grabbing a friend and having a good scare, or if you're a die-hard fan of the genre, experiencing at least once. The game is immersive even with the slight lack of AAA-styled graphics and gameplay and does everything it should for being a game in the genre. Created solely by a one man team, there's much to be appreciated about it. Major Youtubers such as Markiplier and PewDiePie have found a huge amount of fun and scares while playing the game, which speaks a good deal to the potential horror that faces you as well.
My experience playing was a unique one. As a pure console gamer, but PC streamer/youtuber fan, I felt it was exactly what many other pure console gamers deserve to finally play themselves. The way KeenGamer is set up, I have to rate the game with a numerical value, but if it was completely up to me regarding the format, I'd give it a WouldCrapMyPantsAgain/10. The score given (numerically) is based on the product you get for the very friendly price tag.
The one man team responsible for my newly acquired nightmares (Shawn Hitchcock) took the time to answer a few questions regarding the game and his future plans for it (and a potential sequel). If you'd like to know more about his ideas and plans, you can check out the Emily Wants To Play Interview.
|+ Incredibly Scary and Suspenseful||- Character graphics are a little lacking|
|+ Smooth Gameplay||- No fully explained story introduction|
|+ Wallet friendly price|
|+ Excellent sound effects|