The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil In Me (PC) Preview

By Neil Flynn 06.11.2022

Review for The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil In Me on PC

Cubed3 recently had the chance to preview a demo of the final instalment of season one of The Dark Pictures Anthology, The Devil In Me. The upcoming horror title has seen an evolution to its formula across the previous three games, Man of Medan, Little Hope and House of Ashes, some of which have been documented in Cubed3's interview with Director Tom Heaton, and others discovered by playing the demo. What trials and tribulations does The Devil In Me have in store? Read on to find out.

The demo starts part way through the story, although not too far from the beginning by the sounds of it. Tom Heaton walks through the background, plot lines and inspiration for The Devil In Me, all of which builds towards the eerie atmosphere present in the demo. The team at Supermassive Games are always looking around for real-world inspiration and The Devil In Me is no different, this time building the plot around H.H. Holmes, an American serial killer from the 1890s. Tom Heaton from Supermassive Games tells Cubed3 that H.H. Holmes built a hotel in Chicago to house those attending the World's Fair which ended up being the setting for a set of rather gruesome murders, making it more a 'House of Horrors' than a hotel. Nonetheless this setting and historical context inspired The Devil In Me in the way that H.H. Holmes creatively murdered his victims in a very cruel and yet compelling manner.

Screenshot for The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil In Me on PC

The Devil In Me sets itself up by having an amateur cast and crew making a documentary on the infamous H.H. Holmes. Unfortunately for them, the fledging production studio have spent all their budget and don't have the funds to film their documentary - that is until they receive an offer to shoot scenes at an almost replica hotel to the one that H.H. Holmes built. The demo picks up where the production team have just turned up to the hotel, which is situated on an island and their phones are confiscated by the owner. The dynamic cast of characters are charming and quirky enough that the demo is largely based on seeking out their personality traits and understanding their various backstories. The demo centres around five key characters: Charlie, Kate, Mark, Jamie and Erin. Charlie is the director, tetchy, bullish and anxious. Kate is the presenter and leading cast member of the group; she is driven and is using the show as a platform to move on to better opportunities. Mark, the ex-partner of Kate, is unruffled and somewhat of a man-child, unable to make his own decisions. Jamie is the sound technician and is confident in herself and her own unique style of comedy. Finally, there's Erin, the intern of the group, who wants to step up and make a difference.

Screenshot for The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil In Me on PC

Gameplay in The Devil In Me has seen an evolution from the previous games in the series, with puzzles aimed to engage players in new ways, such as escape rooms, re-wiring fuse boxes and other similar tasks. Furthermore, long gone are those slow trudging walks. The team seemed pretty proud to announce the ability to run, which means backtracking and movement in general is a lot faster, albeit something that should have been in the series from the start. It's not just running though, other elements of traversal have evolved as well, such as newly added actions to climb, crouch, jump and balance across beams. There is also a new function of being able to run and hide from an enemy; something similar was also present in The Quarry (another horror game developed by Supermassive Games) with a mechanic to hold your breath during tense moments. Supermassive Games' Tom Heaton states that these newfound abilities allow the team to create non-linear levels and that the player has more control of their playthrough than ever before. Another new addition comes in the guise of an inventory screen allowing storage of items which can be used during the game, or even lost and broken. While these are all new features within The Dark Pictures Anthology, they aren't features to write home about, and aren't exactly considered to be ground-breaking either, even in the horror genre. However, it does show the care and attention that Supermassive Games are putting into the gameplay to improve the player experience.

Screenshot for The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil In Me on PC

The large draw for many fans of the series are the branching narratives based on choices made by the player. Choices offered up to players can sometimes feel completely innocuous, while others seem far more obvious on what the outcome is going to be, but then something out of left field will happen. Throughout the demo, which lasted just over an hour, each character has their turn to shine, with Charlie and Erin on the hunt for cigarettes, Mark and Kate exploring the hotel to find a good place to shoot and Jamie stirring the tension within the group, just for laughs. During Cubed3's playthrough, Erin manages to get herself trapped in a room where she senses a creepy presence and is convinced that they are not alone in the hotel, whereas Charlie and Jamie find themselves with a rather difficult choice to make where it seems making the most obvious choice will surely result in death. The developers have done a great job keeping players on their toes with guessing what could be next for each of the characters.

Screenshot for The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil In Me on PC

Final Thoughts

There is not long left to find out what is in store for the characters in the The Devil In Me. Fans of the The Dark Pictures Anthology will enjoy the evolutions to the gameplay, and Tom Heaton's somewhat jokingly sinister dark tone in Cubed3's interview, alludes to the guarantee of some very gruesome and inventive deaths. Horror fans should absolutely have this one marked on their calendars. The Devil In Me from Supermassive Games and published by Bandai Namco is due to release on 18 November 2022 on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and PC.

Developer

SuperMassive Games

Publisher

Bandai Namco

Genre

Horror

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  n/a

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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