Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Alone in the Dark - another legend destroyed

So I saw the video interview with some Atari woman talking about Alone in the Dark. To cut it short for you ...

The original game was innovative in its time - think 2D adventure turned 3D. The CCTV perspective - you played the game, but watched it as if through CCTV cameras - enhanced the atmosphere considerably. Plus the game creators had control over what the player would see. Pure visual storytelling!

Atari think, that by turning the excellent original game format into a 3D FPS, has caused it to become innovative. Letting the player to choose between first-person and third-person view sucks, because you've got no control about what he'll see. Also the camera in third-person mode is not very good, especially when you're driving a car.

The original game usually let you explore the surroundings an then use them against your enemies in a natural way. The puzzles shown in the videos (pull lever to fry bats behind a fence using electrical energy) were quite simplistic and boring.

Putting everything on fire is, again, innovative. No one has made that right yet ... blah blah blah. And in the background a man is carrying around a burning chair. Behold. Now he touches a wooden beam. And the beam starts to burn after being in contact with the chair for 2 seconds. Incredible realism. NOT.


The original game had:
  • well thought out environments - haunted house and surrounding scary places
  • interesting camera placements - think seeing the world through various CCTV cameras attached at weird angles ;)
  • excellent atmosphere thanks to the soundtrack and ambient sounds
The new game will have:
  • exact replica of Central Park that you can experience either in first-person or third-person mode
  • inventory system, that makes you look at your shoes - like when you vomit
  • various distracting effects like you blinking - also in third-person?
  • loads of weapons - a massacre instead of a horror story
I'm not going to waste my time with that game. Replaying the originals seems a better idea if you missed them.


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