Posted on August 13, 2014 AT 09:08am
One of the most exciting things to hear at any conference is that something is available immediately. When Sony announced that an interactive teaser for a project called P.T. was available to download, I ran for my PS4 to experience the horror-based title. Little did I know I was both in for the scare of my life and an amazing surprise. If you want to experience this on your own, I heartily recommend you immediately stop reading this and just go play it. If not, feel free to read on to hear about how this game freaked me out in a way no game since the original Silent Hill managed to a long time ago.
Let’s get the straight right out of the gate: I’m not a terribly easy scare. Games like Outlast and Slender: The Eight Pages are certainly scary, but after some time with them, I was able to power through without much trouble. If you were to look at my feed on PS4, you’d notice that I’ve taken several breaks from this admittedly short game. Frankly, it’s not the jump scares that have me freaking out about P.T., it’s the oppressive atmosphere it creates and successfully maintains throughout.
The interactive teaser starts you out in a bare room, concrete floors and walls. You walk through the lone door in front of you and find yourself in a long hallway. It looks as though no one has been here in a while. A digital clock which perpetually reads “23:59” sits on a table near some empty beer bottles. As you walk, a horrific tale of murder is recounted on a radio sitting on a dresser nearby. You come to the end of the hallway to an open door and walk down some stairs. Throwing open the door you find at the bottom, you suddenly find yourself staring back into the hallway from which you just escaped.
If nothing else, this demo speaks to me because I’ve actually had nightmares very much along this line. Not being able to escape from repeating situations, becoming aware enough to know what was happening and trying to scare myself awake. It’s that combination of creating an amazing atmosphere, the game looks beyond stupendous graphically, and reaching me on a personal level that had me literally sweating while I sat in a comfy chair playing.
The one thing I’d say I don’t love about the experience are the puzzles. I’m not even sure you could call them that, because it’s really just kind of stumbling upon things and accidentally doing them correctly. It gives absolutely no clues as to controls and it’s generally pretty difficult to figure out where you should be looking at any given time. This does create even more unease, because it has you searching through this terrifying locale, anticipating something to surprise you at any moment.
I won’t ruin the surprise at the end of this interactive teaser, but you’ll want to keep playing until you’ve reached the end. Trust me, you’ll know when you’ve gotten there. If you’ve played it already, please share some of your stories in the comments below. Personally, during the first major jump scare in the game, I jumped and actually let out a scream. Not an easy feat. Well done P.T., keep the scares coming.
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