|August 2, 2016
|October 31, 2018
Laya, Thomas, Kelly, and Kris explore another dark, Gothic world – this time in Bloober Team’s Layers of Fear. Featuring many of the familiar tropes we’ve seen in horror games, Layers of Fear isn’t offering anything in the way of novel gameplay. But isn’t that what makes horror so pleasurable? A few enjoyable jumps were had during the game due to some clever mechanics used by the developers that take advantage of the player’s orientation in the dark space.
One question lingered: Layers of Fear has a lot – A LOT – of drawers, doors, and cabinets that can be opened. Although a few had interactive clues within, the vast majority were simply containers for static objects. Gone Home was a similar experience. Is this a trope common to suspense games? Does the act of opening containment spaces imply the uncanny somehow? Like Amnesia, this game also requires a unique method of interaction with in-game containers. Rather than clicking a button to interact with an object, the player must direct the mouse to mimic the gesture required to open the object. Moving the mouse in an up-down motion, for example, is used to open trunks, boxes, and other lidded containers. Doors are opened with a left-right motion. Does the conscious intention of the player somehow contribute to the suspense of the game?