Wednesday, July 5, 2017


As part of an upcoming Gamasutra article I'm writing, I’m checking some narrative games and one was Until Dawn. I didn’t have it so I borrowed it from a workmate (Thanks, Patrick!) and had the chance to finish it. Well, finish one branch that is. It's one of those storytelling games whose ending changes based on some key decisions you make along the plot
Overall it's a variation of the Heavy Rain model: It lacks exotic gameplay but the story is much more polished, centered and digestible. That would be the first "plus" on the list. Aside from that it's a nice adaptation of the teenage horror movies into a videogame - which feels fresh - there is a good amount of story background through dialogues and collectibles and graphics are well executed
One thing I particularly valued was the branching journal, which explains all the decisions you made so far. Similar to the choice recaps at the end of Telltale games, but more nicely presented and always available
On the minus side it doesn't add so much in terms of game mechanics to the genre, and the homage to how those movies are resolved make it a bit predictable. Is still a good game, excellent if you like the genre, particularly if you consider that the tone of both Quantic Dream and Telltale products is extremely dramatic: No matter which decision you make, you know the characters will be doomed to an uncomfortable outcome. Also in those games most of the golden path is pre-defined, and trick you into petty choices to make you believe the plot has actually changed when actually it hasn’t that much

In Until Dawn you can either save all characters or they can all die, so the decisions seem to be more meaningful, and actually there is a “Happy ending” you can achieve. In short, highly recommended for the storytelling genre lovers, or people interested in entering into that type of games. Not sure about other type of players, though

No comments: