I love Nintendo. I have extremely high hopes for them regardless of how much I think they are screwing up. I think they are doing a lot of things right, but I also think they are doing a lot of things wrong. With just a couple of tweaks here and there, I think they could be doing everything right.
Slender: The Arrival Preview
Slender: The Eight Pages was one of the best pure horror experiences of recent years. It stood up to games such as Dead Space, Resident Evil and Silent Hill by making you fear the unknown. You never know how or when Slender, the tall, menacing man in a suit with no face, will find you. You are told to not turn around and if you do, you leave yourself open to being caught. It perfectly captured the human sense of curiosity. You want to turn around and be aware of your surroundings. But you can’t.
The release of the sequel Slender: The Arrival is a month away. If you pre-order the game, you get the beta to download now for free. Essentially, it consists of a re-imagining of the original with better graphics, a new location, a new HUD and a new Slender Man. The basics of the game are still present. However, you are a character trying to figure out the identity of an entity that constantly chases you and to try and escape from it. You still have the trusty flashlight and it still runs out of batteries if you spend too long using it.
Right from the start the differences are obvious, the lighting and a HUD resembling a video recorder hit you instantly. There are non-important notes to be picked up and added to a “scrap book”, which I assume comes into play in the full game. While you start off at the same position in the first game, making it easier to get your bearings, the new version puts you in various different places, making it harder to find places of interest.
The landmarks have changed too. Gone are the bland rocks and random structures, replaced with camp sites, portable toilets and towers among other things. Another change to them is that they seem to move around with each play through. Playing the second time, I expected to find each place in the exact position, but they weren’t. This shows the effort being put into the new game. While the first was a side-project, this is a fully fledged game.
However, I did have one issue. The game seems to be more lenient to the player, allowing them to escape from Slender and to have more time to turn than before. The main problem is that, once you realize that you have more time on your hands, the game loses a certain element of fear from it. There can be mistake after mistake and no consequence. In comparison to this to the old version of the game, you stop for a few seconds and you are caught. The FAQs for the game say that the developer has “intentionally designed the game to be easier than The Eight Pages… This is so a broader audience has a better chance at completion.” They also say “Fear not, we have a ‘Hardcore’ difficulty mode for the ambitious.”
The game’s price is nothing to scoff at either. The game is normally $10/£6.50 but if pre ordered, the game is half price. Considering the replayability value of the game, this is a steal. In addition, the full game will incorporate these elements plus a story line, new enemies and different levels to explore.
If any of you have played the game please comment with your thoughts on it below!