Hold Me: Amnesia Sets Date With Spooks

Frictional Games’ new horror title, Amnesia: The Dark Descent, is probably going to give me nightmares. They seem to be celebrating this with a new trailer, which sets the release date for Sepetember 8th, and reminds us why we should be interested in the gloomy spookiness of their game design. Feel vaguely disconcerted, below. (Also, the main site reveals that they are definitely planning a demo, which sounds like a good idea to me.)


  1. Flaringo says:

    Sounds spooky

  2. Pie21 says:

    Hopefully that voice is the first of your inevitable friend/acquaintance/any other person deaths. I don’t think I could manage to be suitably spooked with too many more lines like “PAY atTENtion DANdal!” Maybe it’s just the name.

  3. kenoxite says:

    Really looking forward to play this game. The first two games in the Penumbra series were amazingly spooky experiences. And games.

  4. straechav says:

    Is it just me, or does that “Amnesia” logo look a whole lot like some Black Metal or Death Metal band logo?

  5. Serenegoose says:

    I am amazingly easy to spook. I’ll watch out for a let’s play of it at some point, because that’s the only way I’ll ever see what happens in this game :(

    • Pmeie says:

      me too… penumbra was too scary for me ><

    • Mereli says:

      I didn´t find penumbra to scary to begin with but after I found out that enemies can´t hit you has long has you keep running.. well after that the scariness was completely gone.
      Having high hopes for this one though.
      penumbra most certainly got the atmosphere right but the enemies were not scary.

    • luminosity says:

      @Mereli: So you managed to destroy the atmosphere of a well-crafted horror game for yourself? Congratulations, I guess? I just don’t understand why you’d try to break its immersiveness by doing that.

  6. lhzr says:

    ooh, a game where you don’t see anything for 90% of the time. why didn’t others think of this before? sounds like an amazing idea!

    • Corrupt_Tiki says:

      This sort of attitude to gaming is why we have hundreds of generic FPS…

    • poop says:

      its not like horror-game-based-around-not-being-abled-to-see-anything is an original concept duder

    • Vague-rant says:

      Well, if the dark bits aren’t unique enough for you how about the control scheme/ physics engine?

      Also, shouldn’t you be in every other article saying things like, “games with guns, why hasn’t anyone thought of that before?” or “games on computers why hasn’t anyone done that before?”? Its not like every game has to reinvent every single aspect that came before it.

    • Jason Moyer says:

      The isolation of the Penumbra games was the best part. Also, I think I’d put the sort-of-trilogy in top 5 games ever. They really hit a sweet spot for me.

    • lhzr says:

      ah, i have nothing against penumbra, i’ve enjoyed what i’ve played so far from the second part of the series, and i might’ve liked this trailer too, if i could see anything besides occasional glimpses of a lantern.

  7. Navagon says:

    Such are my hopes for this game that I preordered it many months ago.

  8. suibhne says:

    You can still pre-order it straight from the source for 10% off, then use the provided code to add the game to your Steam list:
    link to amnesiagame.com

    • Jason Moyer says:

      Any idea what sort of DRM the FG store uses, if any? If it’s just a one-time activation I might go for that instead of getting on steam, assuming there’s no US dvd release.

  9. Amun says:

    Seeing things sure is generic, you’re right. >_>

  10. Calneon says:

    This trailer wasn’t as good as the last one.

    I pre-ordered a few months ago even though I haven’t played the Penumbra games because they’re too scary for me :D. Will have to force myself.

  11. Ben says:

    Had this on pre-order pretty much as soon as it was available. Penumbra was so, so good.

  12. Nephilim Rising says:

    That’s exactly what I thought when I saw the logo.

  13. Jake says:

    Looks great. I loved the Penumbra games. Played all on your own, in the middle of the night, in the dark (with an owl) they were definitely scary. I thought the second one suffered just a bit from revealing too much of what was going on – in the first game so much is unknown. Also Red was very well done.

    Blindly running away from the enemies was perhaps a bit too effective, but a game doesn’t have to kill you a lot to be a good experience. I didn’t kill any enemies in the first game at all, hiding and running worked.

  14. Mario Figueiredo says:

    Say no to sanity potions.

  15. Matzerath says:

    “It sure is dark in here …”
    Me: “Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhghghhgh!!!!!”

  16. Bhazor says:

    Nowhere near as good as the first trailer but I still have pretty high hopes for this.

  17. Adamos says:

    Penumbrta series probably the only true horror games this gen. Unlike Dead Space, Resident evil and other games that rely on cheap jumps and give you all the weaponary and armor of the world . At least penumbra makes you fell helpless a feeling that horror games should have and on top of that the isolated environment and the sounds add alot

    • The Walker says:

      @Adamos: I dunno, Dead Space had it’s moments. Most of the good scares, for me, involved the excellent sound design. It made being in room surrounded by horrifying perversions of human flesh sound like a million rusty nails being dragged across a chalkboard made from the faces of dead children. That creeps me out.

    • mcnostril says:

      I wouldn’t consider it scary, but it did have excellent sound (and visual, but that’s not quite as unusual) design.

      The rattles coming from the vents made it seem like there was constantly something scurrying in there. It’s a bit of a shame when you really think about it. Imagine if Dead Space, with its design and million dollar budget, played like Penumbra? Awesomeness incarnate. That, and using the awesome Penumbra physics to interact with the holographic displays would be the bomb.

    • jeremypeel says:

      You know how we’re so used to attacking people from vents? Why does it never happen to us?

      I’d imagine creepy rattling vent noises followed by unpredictable attacks would make for some terrifying and memorable enemies.

    • Thants says:

      That IS what happens in Dead Space.

    • jeremypeel says:

      You know how I haven’t played Dead Space yet? Why haven’t I played Dead Space yet?


  18. IvanHoeHo says:

    Man, I’ve been trying to recall the name of that stupid thing for a year now!

    Come to think of it, Azrael’s Tear probably shaped my expectations of all future first-person games (my first); leaving me perpetually disappointed. :(

    Well, off I go to ruin my childhood memories!

  19. Tweakd says:

    Pre-ordered this one many moons ago. The penumbra trilogy was fantastic and i cant wait to get a slice of this.

  20. Casimir's Blake says:

    This is currently the only “commercial” game that I’m looking vaguely forward to. There’s no sign of a new Stalker yet, Thief 4 is likely to suck, no-one is making first-person dungeon crawlers for the PC (no pointless, empty, vapid open-world sections please, just dungeons! The most fun I’ve had lately was with the mobile Doom RPGs!), and I don’t see any sign of a System Shock 3 outside of a fan-produced “SS1 remake” in the SS2 Dark Engine.

    But Amnesia is truly an intriguing prospect. First-person, seemingly weapon-less horror. The previews had excellent audio production, solid visuals, and were simply interesting. And there’s not a single other game I can say that about right now.

    • Malagate says:

      You must have liked Arx Fatalis then huh? I know I did, unfortunately that was first person dungeon crawling inspired by Ultima that is now really getting old. Amnesia does look really promising (pre-ordered it ages ago) but I think if we want dungeon crawlery we would have to take it into our own hands…

    • Casimir's Blake says:

      Arx was pretty good… until I got to the towns and completely lost any trace of what to do. Though that was at least five years ago. And most DS dungeon crawlers have similar problems and/or they’re too quirky and Japanese.

  21. feighnt says:

    totally danlighted by Dandal’s dandy name.

  22. Casimir's Blake says:

    Oh god, there’s a game. I could never get very far into Azreal’s Tear due to having a crappy system at the time that could barely handle the engine. But I immediately appreciated the abstract, pseudo-gothic+alien+fuckknowswhat atmosphere that game had. Even thinking about it reveals just how unimaginative and generic so many of today’s games are.

    Oh, and if any other old games deserve another “mouselook + highres mod”, Azreal’s Tear is desperate for it.

  23. Ozzie says:

    Azrael’s Tear, yeah…one of my favorite adventures ever! Amazing on the first time through, but on the second playtrhough you’ll try to behave as differently as possible, which disappointingly always leads to the same result since the game veers everything back to one unavoidable path. Try to kill one of the knight templars and he’ll come back to life later on like nothing happened, with his old corpse still lying around in another place!

    But still, there’s no game that can beat Azrael’s Tear on atmosphere. And it still feels damn innovative, which is a sad thing to say.
    A reason why only a few care about adventures nowadays is because the few innovative titles that the genre offered were ignored by other designers. Nobody followed in their footsteps. You don’t want to play the same thing over and over again, do you?
    Amnesia is an innovative exception, thank god. ;)

  24. Ozzie says:

    Oh, btw, Azrael’s Tear does have mouselook, it’s just not automatic. You have to press the right mouse button to look around. And in fire mode you have to push the mouse towards the screen sides…
    But high res is definitely needed. While its great that the game looks atmospheric, with truly ruined and filthy environments, the graphics are also very blocky, pixelated. You will have trouble to identify some of the objects. Oh, and the shadows and light reflections are painted on the textures. Not pretty…

  25. Ozzie says:

    Last words about Azrael’s Tear: I also agree, this game needs a retrospective! John, pretty please, could you please write one? ;)
    No honestly, this game is in need of some serious attention. And it’s still pretty great today. I think you’d like it.

  26. jeremypeel says:

    Wow, serious accolades for an atmospheric first person game I’ve never heard of?

    I’m on it.

  27. jeremypeel says:

    Dark trailer is dark (I don’t particularly like that meme but it seemed appropriate).

    The last trailer showed fantastic running and hiding gameplay – this showed less, but is nevertheless rather scary and, y’know, dark. Can’t wait for this.

  28. pupsikaso says:

    Yeah, this really isn’t one of their better trailers.

  29. Freud says:

    I can’t really play these games where it is all tension. Expecting something to happen all the time is not healthy for me and when it is too dark on the screen I lean in like a true horror sucker. I don’t mind a level or two of spookiness (Shalebridge Cradle in Thief, The hotel in Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines or the underground labs in Stalker) but it can’t be the main course.

  30. thinsoldier says:

    I’d prefer a remake of Clive Barker’s Undying.

    • Rinox says:

      Frak yes.

      I still get the shivers when I hear the Howlers’, erh, howl. Followed by that horrdible tickety-tackety noise they’d make while running towards you. :-/ And then…JUMP AND SLASH. Oh God.

  31. rasmus says:

    Seconding (thirding, fourthing?) some needed attention on Azrael’s Tear, dear RPS!

    All of this Deus Ex talk has really highlighted how strange it is that the games that I think blew a lot of our socks off back in the day and convinced us that the future of PC gaming would forever be moulded on the likes of Deus Ex and Azrael’s Tear etc never actually happened. It’s as if a certain uncrossable level was since secretly agreed upon with regard to interactivity etc and people just got on with upping the graphics, to this day, and going there again would be nothing but awkwardly retro in the wake of all this “accessibility”. And maybe more than highlighting this strangeness your recent features make it more apparent than ever how strong the demand actually is for new games that tap into all this lost greatness among all of us that grew up with it…

  32. Mitza says:

    Is… is that the voice from Dungeon Keeper (the one that played at the beginning of each level)?

  33. Pepelusky says:

    I bought it on a 30%(i think) discount offer during that pay what you want indie sale. You got this code right at the time or we’ll have to wait until the release date?

  34. whalleywhat says:

    *Doom 3 joke*