Red Barrels Games’ Outlast will have a special place in my game history. It will live alongside Amnesia: The Dark Descent as one of the few games to unsettle me to the core and caused me to yelp aloud. Like Amnesia, it was also be recognized for not sustaining its oppressive atmosphere for long and eventually unraveling into an adventure that I couldn’t wait to complete.
It’s amazing how similar the two games’ trajectories were. I was completely immersed and taken by the Outlast’s disturbing setting. The mental hospital setting in video games is as tired as the Middle East but well executed designs can still be effective. Jump scares may be cheap and I have seen plenty of them over the years but they’re still effective when they’re planned accordingly.