GDC 2016: 2Dark Offers a Serial Killer Dust-Up

Steve Anderson : End Game
Steve Anderson
The Video Store Guy
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GDC 2016: 2Dark Offers a Serial Killer Dust-Up

Horror gaming has been a bit on the outs lately, and while we've had some interesting new titles crop up like Oxenfree and Pony Island come out, it's been a fairly light season for the last couple months. However, recent word from the Game Developers Conference (GDC) 2016 event brought out a trailer for a new and rather exciting piece called 2Dark.

2Dark takes us out to Gloomywood, where you--playing a gent with the almost clear alias of "Mr. Smith"--are out to recover the town's supply of children, recently stolen by a coterie of serial killers who may or may not be working together. Mr. Smith will plunge through a series of deeply unpleasant places to find the lost tykes and return them unto their waiting parents.

With limited uses of light sources, and a game dynamic that actually encourages you to stay in the dark as long as possible--the light gives your position away to the child-killing maniacs--while also making as little sound as possible, the end result is a whole new level of stealth gaming that requires careful planning and equally careful execution to survive. Worse, some kids have actually developed Stockholm Syndrome, and aren't interested in leaving their captors. The kids often also make noise, and that throws a wrench in your plans to leave silently as well.

Even the save game system is dangerous; saving is accomplished by stopping for a smoke break. Do so too often, meanwhile, and your character develops smoker's cough, leaving him hacking at random in the midst of a place you'd sooner be quiet in.

Creepy? Profoundly. The trailer matches the game's sheer creepy factor shockingly well, and left me profoundly unsettled throughout the course of it. I'm not particularly fond of stealth-based gameplay--when I'm playing a game, I'm there to kick various body parts and chew bubblegum, and I'm all out of Doublemint--but for those who are, this little beauty should challenge most anyone who takes a run at it. Even I thought it looked like fun, and this normally isn't my kind of game.

2Dark is set for release later this year, and based on what I've seen so far, this is going to make a dandy little October release. With the air chilling once more, and the leaves dropping, it's going to be just the time to go plunging through a serial killer's hideout looking for kidnapped children.

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