Thanatophobia Preview

The horror genre has fallen on some rough times lately if you are just looking at the surface.  Series like Silent Hill, Resident Evil, and Fear have really garnered some mixed opinions with their latest installments and have really divided fans.

However, in the last year or so, the indie horror scene has really flourished and has really taken on a life of its own.  It isn’t just retro styled RPG Maker games that are making waves either, some of these games seemingly have a great budget or production values behind them, and that is what we are looking at today in Thanatophobia.

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Thanatophobia is brought to us by Death Knell games, and indie studio from England. At first look you might think you are playing a Silent Hill game from that series’ glory days.  Based on the preview trailer it seems like they really nailed the atmosphere here and every little part of the graphics adds to it.  The overall look is dark, the buildings are dilapidated, and there is just enough lighting to give us a view into the game, but at the same time not letting us know what might be around the corner.

The lighting effects themselves are also very well done in at atmospheric sense with plenty of glaring lens flares as well as shadow effects.  Now, while the overall graphics are very impressive, just based on the trailer you can see plenty of muddy and washed out textures so if that thing really bothers you, take note of it.  I don’t really find it to be a detractor to the overall look at all.

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The gameplay itself makes you think even more of those horror games of the “glory” days.  It seems like you are going to be at a big disadvantage in combat situations and running will probably suit you better than head on confrontations most of the time.

It also seems like this game is going to have plenty of puzzles and riddles to keep your brain working overtime.  You view your avatar through a 3rd person viewpoint and seemingly (remember, this is just based off a couple of videos) control him exactly as you would any other 3rd person action game.

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Now, I can’t finish up this preview without touching for a second on the sound.  I didn’t get to hear much of the music, but what I heard was really quite good.  Moody, dark, atmospheric, powerful, and above all, VARIED!  Just based on a 3 minute trailer, I heard soothing piano and then it blast into a bass thumping techno beat.  The voice acting seemed like a mixed bag, I enjoyed the character of David, but Sam’s lines just came off as kind of forced.  Not a game breaker mind you, but worth noting.

Thanatophobia seems like a love letter to the survival horror games of legend and if you are burnt out by the modern versions of classic series like Silent Hill and Resident Evil you NEED to give this game a look.  The release date is still TBD, but you can follow Death Knell games HERE.

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