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Until Dawn

Developer: Supermassive Games Publisher: SCE
25 August 2015
Until Dawn - cover art
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813 Ratings / 4 Reviews
#1,489 All-time
#56 for 2015
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Title
Boom, Butterfly Effect
I was 8 years late to the party for Until Dawn but it was worth it.
For a start the visuals haven't aged a bit, the lighting is stunning and the facial animations are still better than most games you see now. The only awkward moments are in the physical animations where it something as simple as opening a door looks janky and off, that's a very minor blip though.

The gameplay at its core is pretty basic with lots of walking, QTEs and dialogue choices. What makes it stand out however is the atmosphere and pressure the game layers on it, you're eased into it at the start with mundane tasks but by the end every button press and choice could mean death and shiz gets tense. This is especially true of the "Don't move" segments, I thought it would be easy but boy that mechanic is both genius and nasty especially in the closing moments. The walking segments do go on a bit long and can take away from the replay value.
I'm usually put off by games heavily dependent on choices (thanks to the Walking Dead games) but here the game does a good job of laying out which paths lay before you in terms of character relationships, there's also the totems to guide you which helped me out in a few tense moments. The Run or Hide bits are much more 50/50 and you're likely going to fail a couple on your first run.

The story is clever and engaging once it gets going, the characters are all your pretty typical teenage archetypes but props to the writer though for swaying my views on Mike and Jessica who I first thought were the annoying jock and cheerleader combo but actually I grew to like them alot by the end. The plot does get wonky towards the end as the game thinks of reasons to get the guys out of the lodge then back to the lodge to set up for the big finale. The story is also incredibly grim, discovering the fate of certain characters wasn't something I was able to shake straight away and when you do mess up and get people killed you get very creatively violent deaths to an almost disturbing degree.
A warning too if you don't like jumpscares as there are plenty of them throughout but they are mostly fake-out ones to keep you on edge.

At about 7 hours long per run it's definitely worth a go, the studio has made other games with the same formula but most would agree that they captured something special in this first attempt.
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Teeba 2023-04-23T21:33:27Z
2023-04-23T21:33:27Z
4.0
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My sweaty hands got Sam killed
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beachhousestan 2022-12-20T12:51:42Z
2022-12-20T12:51:42Z
4.0
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Damn solid story/atmosphere, room for improvement on the "gameplay"
Until Dawn first impressions review

I went into this game mostly blind, all I knew was that it was a choice based telltale-esque game that was more so a movie with player dependent choices/actions than a standard video game experience - and that it featured Wendigos. I'm very glad I went in blind, because that's how this game is meant to be played.

Now, I've only played the game once - and finished it less than 30 minutes before writing this review - and I understand this is a game that will greatly benefit from a replay, so this review is mostly first impressions.

This "game" tells a very very compelling horror narrative. It is DECEPTIVELY CORNY at first, resembling what could initially be written off as a parody of slashers - asshole horny teenagers and a killer on the loose. Once you get past that stage though, you get involved in a touching narrative about grief, growing as a person, good and bad decisions, and the fact that sometimes you can't save everyone no matter how much it hurts to realize that.

The characters and their individual arcs are well written, people who seem like insensitive assholes reveal parts of their truer self under pressure, the sensitive parts of our ego that we tend to hide are unmasked and they learn that sometimes it's okay to be scared, and that there will be people there for you. People learn what grief can do to a person's mind, and how corrupt a mind can become when it becomes controlled by its own delusional narratives.

As for the horror? It's quite suspenseful once you start getting to the "meat" of the game and stays that way all the way through, there's a few moments where you have to suspend your disbelief to a degree, but once you get past that you begin to feel embedded in the tense thrills it presents you. There are a few instances of jumpscares, but I feel they're decently earned.

As for the gameplay, I do think there's a lot of room for improvement. Sometimes it feels like the quick time events (which there are a lot of and man I get the circle and square buttons confused too often out of pressure) and "DON'T MOVE" sections are a bit too abrupt, especially the latter when it literally can mean life or death, but the actual use of the choice based narrative is quite well done and feels genuine. One thing I will say, the movement controls are ATROCIOUSLY CLUNKY and THANK GOD there isn't any real punishment for being slow to move in those sections. The controls just did not mix well with the camera style.

But overall, it's was a great experience and I'm glad I played it and I probably will eventually replay it again with hindsight in mind.

Gameplay: 5/10
Story: 9/10
Character writing: 8/10
Atmosphere/Presentation/Horror: 8/10
Overall: 8/10 would recommend if you enjoy suspense/horror media
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Wayoftheredpanda 2022-04-23T06:54:48Z
2022-04-23T06:54:48Z
4.0
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Enjoyable tribute to shitty slashers movies
I had low expectations for this game after looking at the reviews and ratings online, but I shall say that this is actually quite a good example of interactive drama. You shouldn't be too serious while playing this: after all "Until Dawn" is nothing but a big tribute to the cheap slasher horror movies. All the clichés of the genre are here, and I played it the same way I would watch a shitty horror movie on Friday night, just for the sake of having fun. Never expect a deep narrative, everything is over the top and straightforward enough to keep the attention going.

Like in other similar story-driven titles, the gameplay is simple and minimal, but knowing that each mistake might permanently kill one of the characters will keep the tension high even for the simplest actions. Characters are again a bunch of slasher movie archetypes but are so easy to love or hate to the point you will feel frustrated every time you end up "killing" each one of them.

The only problem was the shift of genre during the second half with the wendigos. It just made the whole thing kind of uninteresting compared to the first few chapters. I didn't mind the game being not as dependent on the player's choice as advertised, but as I was expecting to play a slasher, I was kind of disappointed to have to deal with monsters and supernatural BS for half of the game.
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manicure 2021-07-18T03:16:07Z
2021-07-18T03:16:07Z
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It's bizarre to see this release get such glowing reviews from critics. I can't think of a more basic horror game with such mass appeal. I got this via PSN+ for free, and I finished it last night. I do enjoy the consequence of having characters die based on my bad inputs (killed Matt for not hitting the right button) and it seemed to change the story a bit. The Butterfly Effect is nice, but it's potential is still there. It's not properly put to use, often having you say to yourself, "I'll have to play through this again to see the other effect."

From the performances, jump scares, writing, and logic, "Until Dawn" suffers on many fronts. I am very particular when it comes to horror, but I don't think it's a lot to say that the horror here feels like it came out of a film production company like BlumHouse. The scares are cheap, the characters are aggravating, and it's a drag to get through. Admittedly, there are a few moments I did enjoy. I did, also, want to see it through to the end, so it couldn't have been that bad.

In short, "Until Dawn," is what happens when films such as "The Conjuring," do well; someone feels the need to put it into a game. There are plenty of unrecognized horror experiences out there that should get the praise the game still, to this day, gets.
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gas33 2018-12-06T20:16:44Z
2018-12-06T20:16:44Z
2.5
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I remember seeing this game about a year before it came out and seeing it advertised as a Heavy Rain style game where your choices impacted the outcome of the game, and it would be done in the style of a cliche horror movie. It vaguely interested me, as it claimed you could have characters die if you make the wrong choices and the ending would actually reflect this, which is a step up from most of the Telltale games where no matter what choices you make the ending will almost always be the same. I ended up renting this through Gamefly a few weeks before Halloween through a free trial I had about 2 years back. To be honest, for the first half of the game I found it pretty entertaining and engaging. It did come off as a bit cheesy with some awkward dialogue, but it had a nice murder mystery going, and was full of some really tense moments, and I actually felt like my choices in the game were making a difference plus I was enjoying the environment, and the graphics in this game are excellent, some of the better I've seen on PS4. But then about halfway through the game changes its focus and tone, and goes from being a psycho killer murder mystery, to a supernatural horror with monsters.

It just felt really odd and abrupt how the game shifted, and I found the second half of the game to be way less interesting. It just felt like most of the second half was running away from monsters. Plus some characters in this game have plot armor and just can't die until the final chapter, which is stupid because theres one point where a character is attacked by tons of monsters and if you fail that segment he just gets knocked out until he's rescued. But overall, the game isn't bad, it was fun collecting totems and making choices that could be risky and kill off characters, and up until the big plot twist, the game was an enjoyable horror thriller that kept me captivated. The game just got a bit ridiculous and went a bit downhill in the second half with less good moments and lame generic monsters. Plus the ending doesn't really change much, the helicopter will still arrive to rescue everyone, the only different is the more characters you save the more interviews show during the credits. Also did I mention some of the characters in this game are just super awkward and annoying that its like the game purposely wants you to hate them. This game still is worth playing one time at least, maybe 2 if you want to save all the characters and get the collectibles, but it still has some pretty glaring flaws, and a story that starts falling apart in the second half, plus some characters that have plot armor, I mean if it would have just stuck to the murder mystery with a psychotic killer and given more points where characters could be killed off, this could have been a lot better.
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jweber14 2017-07-21T22:34:41Z
2017-07-21T22:34:41Z
3.5
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Catalog

robertodelvalle Until Dawn 2024-02-27T21:49:41Z
2024-02-27T21:49:41Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
WalkinGuy09 Until Dawn 2024-02-26T07:52:18Z
2024-02-26T07:52:18Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
selib Until Dawn 2024-02-25T18:46:59Z
2024-02-25T18:46:59Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
aphelion_void Until Dawn 2024-02-22T12:10:37Z
2024-02-22T12:10:37Z
3.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Fub98 Until Dawn 2024-02-20T20:26:40Z
2024-02-20T20:26:40Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
DaggerDraven Until Dawn 2024-02-20T11:04:59Z
PS4
2024-02-20T11:04:59Z
3
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
DaggerDraven Until Dawn 2024-02-20T11:04:31Z
2024-02-20T11:04:31Z
4.0
3
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
hyperhaxorus Until Dawn 2024-02-18T17:02:33Z
2024-02-18T17:02:33Z
39
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
ZachGM Until Dawn 2024-02-17T01:45:59Z
2024-02-17T01:45:59Z
5.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Dan_CiTi Until Dawn 2024-02-16T03:42:00Z
2024-02-16T03:42:00Z
3.5
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
gudvardarson Until Dawn 2024-02-11T16:59:58Z
PS4
2024-02-11T16:59:58Z
4.0
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
froghead Until Dawn 2024-02-11T12:02:11Z
2024-02-11T12:02:11Z
3.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Content rating
ESRB: M
Player modes
Single-player
Media
1x Blu-ray
Franchises

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  • Previous comments (15) Loading...
  • thm_yrk12 2023-06-08 21:02:35.95546+00
    until yawn
    reply
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  • Boykisser 2023-08-16 11:37:26.829526+00
    dont care + this game is awesome + youre impatient if you dont like it
    reply
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  • R0CKDR1G0 2023-12-30 10:41:59.027642+00
    Never got why the general opinion was positive. It's totally confused about weather it wants to be a satire or not (the Cabin on the Woods movie being very similar pulls off the switch from fake danger to real danger leagues more smoothly) and wastes time baiting threads that will end up not adding much to the overall story. Also, for an exploration game the more you explore the more you realize how lazy the choice system is, not that unlike David Cage games where straying away from the intended path leads to a nonsensical story, and on top big sections of the game are unfailable (Sam and Mike cannot die until their last scene in the game).
    reply
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  • renegadexavier06 2024-01-06 19:56:58.447731+00
    The logical conclusion of Sony's "movie game"
    reply
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  • hugo6849 2024-01-24 19:06:45.027552+00
    ITS JUST A PRANK HAN!
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