How many people can your decision save from a particular death?
In 2019, and the creators of the successful PlayStation exclusives, they release the ambitious horror series The Dark Pictures Anthology. After the lukewarm welcome of the Man of Medan, the second independent work arrives only after a break of at least a year. Has the developer had enough time to “decorate” and get closer to the quality of their first interactive work (until dawn)? Or, on the contrary, has the anthology level dropped?
After passing the open sea at Man of Medan, this game takes you to the abandoned American village of Little Hope. Five school trips were trapped in an unfortunate car accident. John and Angela, Taylor’s new student couple, along with Daniel and classmate Andrew. The fate of these five characters depends on the decision and dexterity of the QTE moment.
The character is lacking in depth.
You’ll want to characterize you with a key feature to access the character’s story, but the game creators themselves will have forgotten this during their development. As a result, we get a relatively shallow playable character that is very difficult to form emotional bonds. Forget about the intense feelings that were with us until dawn.
Your main goal is simply to escape from the desolate captain of the dead city of Little Hope. But it won’t let you go without first solving the mysteries that have plagued the city for centuries. You’ll find Little Hope right after a bus crash that isn’t your average city. Impenetrable fog, monsters and other supernatural phenomena will not last long.
Classic extra-large gameplay and lots of QTEs
It may take some time for new players to adjust to the slightly rough third-party gameplay and fixed cameras in a limited space. However, if you are a loyal fan of Supermassive Games, there is nothing new in terms of playability. The game features classic sequences of navigating around with characters, action sequences with QTEs, and movie scenes with decisions that will influence the development of the game.
Despite not being interesting and dark outside and inside, a thorough browsing of the site will really help. In addition to clues to solving the mystery, there are also postcards showing possible future pieces. Also, you should always keep in mind that the game is strictly linear. So, if you accidentally run a cutscene, you can forget all the collectibles from the old site.
As in all interactive games, QTE moments remain an integral part of gameplay. But hard to understand in this case, the game will prepare ahead for each quick time event with an interactive indicator, which, in the humble opinion, kills the whole essence of QTE. Even now, five years later, I imagine Wendy’s running away from him until dawn, and a cold sweat is on his forehead. But in Little Hope, you can handle sequences of actions without increasing your heart rate.
The dynamics of the relationship and the absence of a gradient of events
Aside from all the beauty flaws of the gameplay, the biggest disappointment for me was the story. Don’t get me wrong. There was no lack of thought and originality in the subject itself or in the final solution. But forgiving was the absence of relationship dynamics. The only thing that influences decision making is the graphical representation of relationship development in the menu. You won’t notice any change of relationship in the game.
Worse still, it endured the bizarre reactions of the characters from time to time. At some point, Taylor is almost killed by hand or by the tongue of a rotten airborne monster, and after a while the character again acts like a happy family on vacation. Sorry for all the money poured into mocaps, expensive actors and beautiful graphic designs when even the cartoon characters of Life Is Strange have more credible emotions.
Another unmanageable thing that’s so important in an interactive game that emphasizes the story is the gradient of the story. The game of about five hours takes place in a monotonous tone of a bit of tension, waiting for a more fundamental twist to begin. But they do not happen at all, and the end comes to Little Hope unexpectedly than lightning in a clear sky.
After all the criticism I have to praise the multiplayer mode “Don’t play alone”. You can share your gaming experience with up to 5 friends online or in classic sofa “pass and play” mode. Closing your eyes in an ordinary game becomes a lot easier once you join a good friend for free once.
The Dark Pictures Anthology: Little Hope-recenzia
- story- 6/10
- Game play- 6/10
- graphic- 9/10
Fascinating audiovisual, with an average story and a decision that does not significantly affect the unfolding of the story. This is the second in The Dark Pictures Anthology series.