Title: Into the Dark: Ultimate Trash Edition

Platform: Windows

Reviewed on: Windows

Genre: First person shooter, horror

Players: Single player

Written by Whistler 7th May 2014

















Zombies, hookers, Nazis and Nazis zombies; got your attention?


Good because you’re about to regret it like I did,
Developed by Homegrown using The Game Creator’s FPS Creator engine,
Into the Dark is a first person shooter with a bad b-movie undertone (undertone being a stretch) in which you play Peter ‘Pete’ O’Brannon, a private eye who while on an investigation for an insurance company is thrown into the mess that is this game’s plot.

Already the enthusiasm is draining out of me, but hey ho, let’s press on.

Even the main menu the game shamelessly flaunts its nasty bits in your face with poor visuals, no settings option (you can change these if you go into the setup.ini but that doesn’t really excuse it), and the choice between new game, load and exit which in hindsight I should’ve picked the latter.
But if like me you decide to plunge yourself you’ll find yourself pleasantly surprised.

























Only joking, visually the game is somewhere in limbo between average and garbage.
Visuals are fairly dated but aren’t bad per say, there just doesn’t feel like there’s any charm to them though; environments for the most part are painted using the stock standard zombie shooter hint of bland colour range and models are nothing special to look at. While guns look half decent there’s no weight to them and there’s no indication of your ammo count or inventory.

While it sounds like a small complaint the lack of any kind of HUD is really off putting, it’s not like there’s some kind of visual que on the weapons themselves to let you know clip size(s), ammo values or even if you’re holding any kind of key items.
There is visualisation of your character’s current health state but it’s presented hideously, with each damage taken the screen’s estate gets filled with library stock blood splatter effects that not only look mediocre, but also blotch out your sight that just makes it more annoying going back and forth between med kits.

I myself like the old school way of healing in fps’ by picking up regenerative items but even this is handled poorly in Into the Dark, located at various points throughout each level you’ll stumbled across first aid kits that instead of picking up you interact with to heal in an incredibly tedious fashion as you wait for the blood effects to be taken off (one splatter at a time), and watching the same three boxes pop up to visually describe the healing process.




























The gameplay is a mix of going through rooms as you locate how to get to the exit, fetching key items and of course fighting enemies as they materialize from thin air once you activate scripted sequences. I played a total of 39 minutes and even then I had to force myself play after 20 as the game just isn’t enjoyable, while the occasional satyr towards politics gave me a small chuckle I just felt like I was experiencing an in-house joke that I’m missing the point of.


Into the Dark presents a rather interesting question, is the game not funny because simply it isn’t, or if it’s not funny because I don’t get the joke.
I understand that all of it’s flaws: constant clipping, piss poor voice acting, garbage AI, rubbish control scheme, awful presentation, so on and so forth; is the joke, it’s just not funny. The game tries so hard to flaunt it’s awfulness and b-movie humour that ‘the joke’ kind of dies really quickly, certain games like Bulletstorm or Duke Nukem’ pulled off the guilty pleasure slapstick humour that still offered a fun gameplay experience but Into the Dark manages neither.

It’s a shame too, on the occasion I forgot how terrible this game is I saw some incredibly well hidden potential for Homegrown games to make a proper horror title but it isn’t to be, at least not from this title. While some might actually enjoy the humour and style this game presents I recommend you spend your money elsewhere (if you can find a bottle of incredibly cheap and nasty alcohol you could experience the same amount of disappointment and regret as buying this game), simply put I suffered this game, and I wouldn’t wish Into the Dark on even my most hated of enemies.


Pros:   

em,

um,

it’s playable.

   


Cons:   

Hideous mechanics,

Poor slapstick humour,

The refund process requires effort.

Final verdict,
Into the Dark: Ultimate Trash Edition is lucky to get a 2/10 from me.

   

Written by,
Whistler
























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