Amnesia: The Dark Descent released on September 8, 2010, with a singular genre-defining statement that arguably blew the doors open for indie development: indie developers can do horror, and it’s scary as hell.
The title received a multitude of acclaim from fans and critics alike, where looking at the Lovecraftian horrors would make your character go insane, resulting in a horror title where not knowing what was occurring (and spiking the suspense massively as you strained to hear the ghoulish wails) was the standard as you stumbled forward through a labyrinthian mansion.
Then came Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs a short three years later, which managed to somehow miss every poignant moment that made the original so wildly enticing. Sprinting around and pulling random levers and knobs could only maintain the suspense for so long, and the title suffered as a result.
So pardon the excitement as Amnesia: Rebirth has just received its release-date trailer for the newest iteration of Amnesia that has been a long time coming, once again developed and published by Frictional Games.
Horror is back on the menu.
This is looking to be a classic rebirth of the developer turned publisher taking the lab coat once again as they craft the narrative survival experience that tests players mental limits of horror and ambiguity as they play as Tasi Trianon, an unknown woman who awakes in Algeria with questions about precisely who she is, where she is, and perhaps most importantly, why.
With puzzles and horror, turning your psychological trauma into an in-game resource, and widely varied environments that we’ve seen thus far within the trailers, it’s looking like Amnesia is offering frictional an opportunity to finally remember a bit of themselves, much as they did with the horror experience SOMA that was mind-blowing in execution and environment alike.
Questions inevitably remain, from precisely how this is going to play out to the various mechanics that will inevitably be ingrained into the title that forces players to attempt strategy while running for their lives; even precisely how immersive the horror will be and how fun the title will actually be.
For now, in the brief moment of respite before the title arrives next month, we should take the opportunity to quiet whatever internal demons we struggle with; the external ones are almost here.