“Darkwood is a game about survival, exploration, and fear…” sums up what to expect from the up and coming star of the survival/horror genre. First time developers Acid Wizard Studio have crafted a unique experience that shines through the overly predictable and painfully dull tropes of gaming industry.
The story you experience in Darkwood isn’t some fairytale that needs to be told to you to like a child; your own adventure within the darkened forest and the choices you make unravel how events will play out later on in the game. You as the player will need to uncover the game’s secrets and you can do it at your own pace, unlike games today where players are spoon-fed everything. Games nowadays also insist on holding your hand until the game is comfortable enough to let you finally play the game – Darkwood doesn’t do that.
Now I could go on and on with all the setting and features that will be present in Darkwood, but instead, this video with the cool sounding narrator does a better job at that. Take a quick look at The Features of Darkwood!
Check out the latest interactive alpha gameplay trailer below and see many of the game’s mechanics in action.
You see very early on how the player was able to extract an ingredient to create a mutagen of some sort as helpful passive abilities are granted to the player. The twist being that you must also pick which negative effect you want as well. Something like having more aggressive animals or having a narrow line of sight will make players take a moment to really think about the trade-off and weigh in which one will mess you up less.
As the character continues on, you notice that an NPC suddenly shows up when the flashlight point in his direction. Having a bird’s eye view of an area normally gives away too much, but Darkwood ingeniously fogs over everything that is not in your character’s field of view. You will notice that the creature is only visible until you shine your flashlight at it. On top of that, objects and walls can obscure your line of sight.
Darkwood messes with your senses the longer the game progresses and the line between what is real and what is nightmare is blurred. The unknown is Darkwood’s main weapon to create an alien and terrifying environment where you simply do not know what could be lying in wait within the shadows. Many games before rely too much sudden loud noises, jumpscares, and gross-out tactics to emulate fear, but Darkwood looks to bring real fear back to the horror genre.
For those interested, Darkwood’s Early Access is out today on Steam for $13.49.