The Quarry Review – Screaming Until Dawn – Game Informer

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Supermassive Games’ Till Dawn was an extraordinarily spooky experience that cut deep with narrative choice, allowing the player to determine which teens survived the night of Hell. The developer’s follow-up, The Dark Pictures Anthology, gave a lot of scares to run, but outpaced the number of options and was a huge step forward. The studio’s latest game, The Quarry, puts decision-making in the spotlight again. This design pays off well in a game full of shocking twists and turns, and a cobweb of paths leading up to 186 possible endings. Even though The Quarry is technically the spiritual successor to Until Dawn, it’s the sequel we’ve been dying to play.

The setting screams a love letter to horror cinema. The final day of summer camp at Hackett’s Quarry is supposed to be about a tearful goodbye between friends and flies, but a broken van gives the teenage mentors another day to party together without worrying about the kids. Supermassive uses this alcohol-filled bonfire moment to establish relationships, taking the time to get to know each counselor, while giving the player the opportunity to define how they act through meaningful input. .

A wonderfully licensed soundtrack enhances the emotional movements

The conversation between the two characters is often interrupted to give the player two lines of thinking – such as “assertive” or “apologetic” – to determine what happens next. Relationships strengthen or weaken depending on the response, and they can lead to dramatic tonal changes that create alternate narrative paths. Exploring the environment and some brief shooting sequences also bring different results and are enjoyable in themselves.

Supermassive does an excellent job of letting you know when you take the story in the other direction, but some decisions are too vague and can lead to unexpected results and perhaps even the death of a counselor. Halfway through the game, I was faced with the choice of opening a trap door or grabbing a bag—both of which give little reference to what could happen—and one of those decisions caused a character to hit midnight. Breakfast is done.

Supermassive knows that some options are coin flips and has baked in a silly “use lives” system to undo them for the special edition (which I played) and extra playthroughs. For the entire game, you get three lives, which is three too many, because the most important element of Supermassive’s horror series is making choices and living with their consequences. The life system steals some of the intensity and will probably lead to more players with better results at the end of the game. One of my favorite questions I asked people after I played Till Dawn was, “How many are left?” The answers were all over the map. I recommend playing the standard version (which just gives you one life), or ignoring the lives to really see how your choices play out.

QTEs provide potential fail points in action sequences but are telegraphed for too long and are a cinch to complete. They are shockingly ineffective and slow down the frantic scenes at key moments. There isn’t much action from these button presses, an element of drama that’s subtly scaled back in comparison to Till Dawn. For example, you won’t encounter as many “run” or “hide” moments or environmental interactions that change your character’s path.

Supermassive has made The Quarry more of a cinematic experience than an interactive one. The lack of control is a bit frustrating but keeping the teen alive mainly through the decisions – of which there are many – was more than enough to keep me going. Like Don Tak, I look forward to jumping back for a second, third, and who knows how many plays it takes to see different branching paths and conclusions (even if many are just texts). Some characters may die early, and I’m curious where the narrative goes without them along for the ride.

I won’t spoil who or what the teens are after, but the survival aspect is thrilling, and finding out what’s really going on is one of the game’s better hooks. However, the best part is the counselor. Each character is interesting in itself and you get to know them very well. Their relationships and ambitions are at the center of most choices and often conflict with those of other characters. I often sat down and wondered how a specific decision might affect someone else in the camp.

The story moves at a good clip and moves to exciting places, yet it can be a headcracker in logic and clarity. You might want to yell at characters on screen for not doing obvious things, but I think it’s a teen slasher-flick staple and may be by design. All you have to do is turn your mind off and let go of the small details. A character with a life-threatening wound acts like he’s completely fine, but that’s what happens in The Quarry. It’s fun, totally unbelievable, but most of all, it’s fun to laugh when you make the characters happy.

Teenagers are all flawed and lovable in their own unique ways. Supermassive has always assembled a great cast, including Academy Award winner Rami Malek in Until Dawn, and that’s true again in The Quarry. The biggest names on the bill are David Arquette and Ted Raimi, but the young ensemble cast stole the show. Evan Evagora, Siobhan Williams, Ariel Winter, Justice Smith, and Halston Sage hone their performances, making you want to do everything possible to keep them out of harm’s way for one second and then strangle the next .

Their jokes are good enough, and their relationships develop to such an extent that you can think for the characters and help them grow. Supermassive’s art team also deserves props for bringing their likeness to life with a frightening degree of realism, capturing the little emotion that can capture a character’s true intention for a split second. The darkly lit and well-designed environments also help to heighten the tension and give a truly cinematic feel to the game. Supermassive also includes a movie mode that allows you to sit back the controller and watch a random decision.

For the main game, I want more action to be in the hands of the player, but I can’t deny how tempting the options are, especially when they lead to complete chaos. Once the jungle escape begins, the dark secrets and the thrill of keeping people alive are powerful hooks that will keep you in suspense until the credits roll.

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