Dreadhalls

Posted March 12, 2014 by in All

Developer: Sergio Hidalgo Serrano
 
Release Date: 9-10-2013
 
Game Type: Horror
 
Platform: PC, MAC, Linux
 
HMD: Oculus Rift
 
Control Schemes: Xbox Controller, Keyboard, Mouse
 
Download: www.dreadhalls.com
 
All Games: ,
 
 
 
 

Best Part:

Unpredictable horror that provokes a variety of different levels of tension, frights and paranoia
 

Worst Part:

Nightmares
 
Bottom Line

A brilliantly executed horror game, that makes you want to come back for more.

Rating

Graphics
 
 
 
 
 


Sound
 
 
 
 
 


Controls
 
 
 
 
 


Gameplay
 
 
 
 
 


Comfort Level
 
 
 
 
 


Immersion
 
 
 
 
 


Total Score
 
 
 
 
 

4/ 5

by Edmund
Full Article

Dreadhalls has you exploring a labyrinth and avoiding monsters in search  of a way out. The environment consists mostly of narrow, claustrophobic  corridors. While it may not really deliver on on the “Halls” it  certainly delivers on the “Dread”. Dreadhalls is very much a horror  game, and in that much, it is very aptly named.

image2

Dreadhalls builds tension throughout the experience. As you walk through  the narrow corridors your view is restricted to just a few feet around  your feeble torch. At the same time, the sound effects and ambient noise  make you conscious that something scary is probably lurking in the  darkness. Perhaps, around the next corner? Or maybe behind this door?  It’s tense enough that even inanimate objects can make you jump.

Tension turns to terror if you do come face to face with one of the  three monster types that lurk in the Dreadhalls. There are no weapons in  the game so if you’re spotted then your only hope is to sprint off into  the darkness. If you can keep your composure then it is often possible  to get away. The music will calm down and you experience a moment of  relief before the tension gradually mounts anew.

As you explore, the places you have been get automatically added to your  map, which you can view by looking down. This is a nice implementation because seeing that map gradually get filled in is pretty much the only source of comfort to you in the whole experience. Being able to just glance down and see your progress almost gives it the role of a security blanket.

image3You also have an inventory to store any loot you may find, but the only thing that is actually  useful to you is oil for your lamp. You come across coins and messages  from past travellers too. But the coins can’t be spent and the notes tend to be oblique warnings or messages  of despair; neither of which are particularly comforting.

“Alone in the Rift” is another Oculus horror game, but that one plays out in a linear fashion. The object is to simply make it through a scary scripted experience. By contrast, Dreadhalls presents you with an environment and  a goal from which moments of horror organically emerge. This makes the  rhythm of the game less predictable and much more replayable. The fact that the maze is different every time, and the fact that you know it is beatable means that you will find yourself wanting to have another go – against your better judgement.

Overall, Dreadhalls is a must-play game for the Rift and definitely one to show your friends. Aside from the constant sense of fear, it is one of the most comfortable walking-and-running VR games. If you like  classic dungeon-crawlers or were a fan of the children’s gameshow  Knightmare, then Dreadhalls will tick a lot of boxes for you. Highly recommended.

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About the Author

Edmund

Edmund Ward is a philosophy graduate who has focused on aesthetics and cultural critique in the information age. He grew up with 'the dream of the holodeck' and is prone to get very excited by new innovations in natural user-interfaces. Edmund is currently looking for volunteers to look after the glucose drip that will sustain his "fleshform" (as he insists on calling it) when he migrates permanently to VR.

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