Thursday, May 26, 2022
Supermassive Games has created something of a niche for itself since its 2015 hit, Until Dawn. Its own brand of choice and consequence isn’t exactly new, what with Life Is Strange and Telltale Games occupying a similar space, but there is something about a Supermassive title that sets it apart from other adventure experiences. The gruesome decapitations, sudden deaths, and tension-filled choices, for starters. Choice and consequence and horror seem to go hand-in-hand, and Supermassive is adept at making your decisions seem like they matter.
The Quarry, Supermassive’s latest stab at decision-driven horror, seems to be more Until Dawn, than its Dark Pictures Anthology, which should delight fans of the genre. Taking more of a slasher flick and Cabin In The Woods-style approach, The Quarry sees you lead a group of nine teens through their experiences at Hackett’s Quarry in Upstate New York. You, as always, are their guide, and, as such, you can also be their downfall, should you make the wrong choices.
While we’ve only played just shy of an hour of Supermassive Games’ latest horror foray, the aspects that seemed to make Until Dawn special, appear to be present and correct in The Quarry. The relationships between the cast of teenagers, their individual personalities, and how they interact or clash with one another, as well as the mystery at the heart of the story - all of it adds up to something very promising, although we’ve seen relatively little of the game thus far.
All of the trademark horror tropes that Until Dawn homaged to great effect remain, as do the myriad questions surrounding its central mystery. Who occupies the woods? Are they friendly? What is the creature that lurks in the shadows? And of course, those anxiety-inducing chase sequences are back again. The foreshadowed moments, this time in terms of tarot cards, also play a part in your experience, with Lin Shaye inhabiting a similar role to Peter Stormare’s foreboding Dr. Hill from Until Dawn, or Pip Torrens’ Curator from The Dark Pictures.
On top of what you’d usually expect, there are now fully-camera controlled sequences, which allows the player a bit more investigative freedom to roam and explore. On top of that players can now interrupt certain conversations, or choose to let them play out. In a sequence around a campfire, where the nine teens play truth or dare, there was a moment that allowed the player to interrupt a potentially awkward conversation involving Abbie (Ariel Winters from Modern Family). Supermassive also appears to have noted Life Is Strange’s successes, too, as there are a ton of licensed songs sprinkled throughout, as well, which is definitely a welcome addition.
Additionally, The Quarry has a ton of options for tailoring your experience, whether it’s making the game easier or even harder (adjusting QTEs or timing windows, for example). If you just want to experience the action as a film of sorts, then you can even set the character’s temperaments and let the action unfold via the hands-off movie mode. The choice – like the ones intertwined throughout the game – is yours!
Players will have to forge a path for all nine characters and ultimately determine their fates in The Quarry. During the final crescendo of our hands-on, we played the story from the perspective of different campers, with the deafening sound of screams and gunshots echoing throughout each playthrough. It’s all bearing up to be a suitably dramatic and suspenseful affair. And like Until Dawn, what happens, and who does what, is almost entirely down to you. So far, we’re really digging The Quarry.
The Quarry is out on 10th June for PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC. To tide you over until then, be sure to watch our gameplay video above, in which Rich and I talk about my experiences with the game. After our hands-on, we’re definitely intrigued to see where this one goes next month!
Thursday, May 26, 2022 @ 08:42 AM
Wednesday, June 01, 2022 @ 10:43 AM
Wednesday, June 01, 2022 @ 01:12 PM