One of the things I really love about the survival horror genere is there is just an unlimited creative freedom in what to do. This game I feel utilizes that freedom well by coming back to some of those mystery games which were more popular in the PC world back in the 90's and doing something more with it.
The graphical presentation is good, it's not great I'll admit it's dated looking mainly in the character animation. But it was good enough to create a creepy and moody atmosphere, I really like the snowy backdrop really gives you that feeling of isolation and almost feel the cold which makes you feel unsafe as if there is some unseen force that has it's icy grip on you and is watching you every movement. But also sort of that dream like sensibility to it as if you walking and moving in a nightmare.
The music I think is very good, it really helps in elevating the suspense of the game but also just like that it has sort of a somber and errie tone to it.
The gameplay is good though there really isn't much too it since it's more guiding and clicking. From the option of choosing how a conversation will go which is almost similar to the decision making in those "Choose Your Own Adventure" books in 80's, what you choose will affect the outcome. However there is only one catch, you have only a limited amount of time to choose the response so make you choice a good one. And there are segment where you have to push the joysticks in the right direction at the right time once on direction lights up, just like the arcade game "Dragon's Lair". But like in that game be careful not to make on too many mistakes, otherwise you can't move forward.
But really what drives this game is in it's story, I really like the story it's sort of a mix of Steven King's "The Dead Zone" and the 80's suspense thriller "The Believers". I really love how it develops, I find it intreging because were in the same boat as the protagonist wondering what the frak is going on? As you get further it gets stranger and more dangerous. What's interesting is that it's not so much a matter of survival but a matter of keeping the story going. The guiding and clicking gameplay adds to it because by it's nature it's really a page turner device. I was so intrigued by the story I constantly wanted to know what was on the next page and constantly struggle to keep the story going. I even love the participator sense in the story which help put you in the action, mainly some of those on the spot situation where you had to either hide something or do something with the limited amount of time your assigned.
Another great thing is in it's cinematography, this game at some points utilizes the split screen it's similar to the same technique in Brian De Palma's films. Where you see something happening in one place while your doing another. It's pretty much a technique of suspense because were armed with the knowledge of something happening right now and it just increases the urgency to take action to avoid suspicion. Another device to reinforce this is the fact you play three character, where with one your working as the detectives tring to locate the protagonist your helping but at the same time your hopping the detective is smart enough to put it all together so they'll be on the protagonist's side so I thought that was an interesting element.
My only real problem is that the story isn't perfect, there are some parts of it that lack a cohesiveness, there are certain things that happen that I felt need to be filled in like for ezample, how the heck can Lucas execute those "Matrix" like movements, it's never explained.
Overall, this is a soild survival horror game that was something different. But word of warning this might not be for everyone if you are into the more actioneer aspect of the genere this game might not be your thing because this is more on an interactive story than game. If you want something different and might be into the mystery genere or have played some of those game from "Tele Tale" ("The Walking Dead", "Monkey Island") then
give it a look, the profacy for this game looks good.