Developed and published by Red Barrels, Outlast is a first-person horror survival game that puts you in the shoes of Miles Upshur, a reporter who’s sole purpose in life is to own the world’s most unreliable video camera.
As the game begins, it quickly becomes clear what sort of game lies ahead. The setting appears as if it has been hand picked out of a cliché horror novel, and as if the Mount Massive Asylum needed to look any creepier, Upshur is the kind of journalist that likes to do his reporting in the dead of night (I’m sure nothing can go wrong there).
As you enter the Asylum it’s no surprise then that you’re not there to find a story on sunshine and lollipops. Between dead SWAT team officers and psychiatric patients, the narrative offers plenty in the way of horror.
What the game particularly does well, however, is jump scares, and the constant threat that the next one might be right around the corner. I consider myself normally quite hardened to horror films and games alike, but there’s something about a group of homicidal patients in an eerie psychiatric hospital that just makes the pause button so much more appealing.
As far as antagonists go, Outlast utilises a wide variety of attributes to create fear. From a homicidal machete-wielding maniac to a doctor that you definitely don’t want to book a prostate exam with. It’s certainly not a game intended for children, or the faint hearted.
“there’s something about a group of homicidal patients in an eerie psychiatric hospital that just makes the pause button so much more appealing”
But does all this mean you should invest your hard earned money into it? I mean surely you can pick up one of many horror games filled with jump scares, cliché scenery and gore galore? Let’s face it, Slender Man ticks at least two out of those three boxes and it was originally free. Well, in short, yes! Spend your money on it. It really won’t disappoint, and not just for its horror, but also for its story. I’m not going to delve too far into that because I’d have to call spoiler alert more times than I’d care for, but between the confidential information folders you can collect as you go through the game to the messages written in blood on the walls, a large degree of time and decent content was invested into the game’s story, and that’s what makes it so enjoyable to play.
My only one reservation about this game is that the protagonist is a bit, wet. Now, I understand that Miles is a journalist and not a professional cage fighter, but if one of the residents does catch up to you, don’t expect him to even attempt to defend himself, your only hope is that he manages to record the whole ordeal on camera before the battery inevitably needs replacing.
This copy of Outlast was purchased and reviewed by our Editor-In-Chief Jared Moore. He spent around 6 hours exploring through the dark and twisted setting known as Mount Massive Asylum.