“The Quarry” the Official launch trailer just dropped, the spiritual successor of Until Dawn follows up in a traditional cliche horror movie start. If anything like Until Dawn, it should be a choice-driven narrative through several player and character choices.
A cliché story setup, that starts like many horror films and games alike, much like most of Suppermassives’ Games stories start. It’s a story of camp counselors that get stuck in the woods, after the end of summer camp. There are nine of them or maybe seven and they decide to have one last celebration before returning to their normal lives. Everything goes awry after something is stalking them from the bushes, determined to pick them off one, by one. The player makes choices to determine, who if any of the nine counselors will last through the night.
In order to progress through the game, you make decisions through the lens of the character using conversations, stealth, quick-time events, combat, and environmental factors to seal the fates of the victims, which should all be pretty familiar if you have played any of the other games from this studio.
What the Critics are Saying
I’m going to try to steer clear of spoilers and just stay on the fringes, why still embracing mainstream critics. I enjoyed Until Dawn; which presumably comes with many of the same criticisms that I agree with for The Quarry Game. That said, no games are perfect and neither is the Quarry game.
IGN gives it 7/10, levying much of the same criticism you would see directed toward a low-budget horror film. Thomas Wilde, argues that the Death rewind feature doesn’t make sense because rewinding back to the character’s most crucial moment can sometimes take you back to a decision that brings you hours back in gameplay, forcing you to replay that to get back to where you were. It is also noted Supermassive games is working on a fix for this, but its unknown what it would look like at this time.
Wilde also gives them a lot of praise and argues that it’s clear they have learned a lot from their previous games and have made some improvements with how stories tie together and had a lot of fun incorporating multiple horror genres into one game.
Cass Marshall, writing for Polygon makes arguments, that the mechanics of the game are clunky and slow, especially during the exploration scenes, which to me doesn’t come as a surprise. He states that there are scenes where the camera angle changes which changes the direction of your inputs in a jarring manner, another thing that I don’t find surprising in this style of game. He does say, its rendered beautifully, but the controls negate the immersion.
It seems a lot of developers in this style of game like to leverage a Hideo Kojima style of controlling the camera in a way to control the narrative, but clunky controls are a shortcoming of this stylistic choice.
George Yang of NPRs Join The Game series mostly sings the praises of The Quarry, saying it comes close to Until Dawn in terms of hitting all the marks of a horror game. His criticism was minor and fair arguing that after death rewinds he was in a hurry to get back to where he was in the game. In the end, though he says, it’s the best Horror game he played all year.
All of the reviewers mention the accessibility options that allow this game to be approachable for any who dares enter the genre. Allowing for 100% skill success on certain checks all the way to full movie mode and death rewind, but most people will be happier just playing the game in my opinion.
The Metacritic score is 80/100 so I think its safe to say this will be a competent and interesting game in its genre.
Gameplay Trailer and First 30 Minutes of Gameplay
The trailer is very exciting, and humorous, laying out a murder suspense mystery, albeit cliché and typical, its still fun and campy. The game looks good and the story looks fun. The voice acting is great and the characters, though tropes seem believable. The cast is including David Arquette, Siobhan Williams, Lin Shaye, Lance Henriksen, Grace Zabriskie, Ted Raimi, Ariel Weenter, Ethan Suplee, Miles Robbins, Halstan Sage, Zach Tinker, Brenda Song, Skyler Gisondo, Even Evagora, and Justice Smith.
The art style comes across a bit brighter than normal in this genre and it does a good job of reasoning that in the story progression.
Am I Going to Play It
The short answer is yes, I will most likely play it. I don’t know if I will be an ambassador or even be buying it on launch, but I will likely play it at some point. Even though this is not my favorite style of game as I like more mechanical games, I still like to appreciate these games for what they are and how they can contribute to later titles.
Breakdown and Score
Story and game elements
Ultimately this is where this type of game and this genre shine and The Quarry did not disappoint, I expect it to be one of if not the best story-driven horror games of the season. The location is familiar and puts you in a realistic area. The characters are believable and the level design is conducive to the style and the area. You feel like you are in the world of a summer camp in America. 2/2
Gameplay and Mechanics
This is where this genre normally struggles, even given the choices, it is all very “on rails”, which is fine, its a style used to tell a story, but the lack of mechanical skill along with the clunky walking, camera, searching and control leaves it lacking in this area. Though the overall objectives and game progression are pretty clear and the user interface is effective. 1/2
Art and Assets
The game is visually striking, The sound effects are nice, and the music keeps you in the scene and with the vibe of the game. There is nothing to complain about in this aspect of the game. The art and design of the game fit together nicely with the other game elements to give off a real-world feel, which adds to the immersion in the game. (2/2)
TechYeahs Score (5/6)
This will be worth a playthrough or two. If suspenseful horror or mystery-thriller is your genre, this is worth picking up at launch, but if that style isn’t your cup of tea, I recommend waiting till later in this game’s lifecycle to get it for a bit less than the initial cost at launch.
I will definitely be playing but waiting till later to play it, but I think it will be a fantastic game and will be perfect for the right audience to pick up right away.