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In Outlast, The Greatest Horror Enemy Of All... Is Man

Man in general, I mean. Not just this one. He's not really that great. Just pretty alright.

There are many frightening things in this world. Some of them are to be expected – for instance, giant, violently writhing millipedes and whatever primeval force gave Gary Busey the power to “smile.” Other things, meanwhile, are less expected. Things like penguin mouths. And still others are so expected that they’ve lost their chill-inducing mystique entirely. That’s where videogame monsters enter the picture. I mean, it’s always monsters, right? Around corners, in ventilation shafts, being president – they’re so predictable. So I can definitely respect Outlast – a new PC-only scare-’em-up from folks who worked on Splinter Cell, Prince of Persia, Assassin’s Creed, and Uncharted – and its plan to instead focus on intelligent, truly evil (or at least crazy) human beings.

Admittedly, Outlast isn’t entirely bereft of cliches. I mean, it takes place in an asylum, which is something I may actually end up in if I’m forced to play one more game that takes place in an asylum. But, if nothing else, its goal sounds fairly novel.

“Acting on a tip from an inside source, independent journalist Miles Upshur breaks into the facility, and what he discovers walks a terrifying line between science and religion, nature and something else entirely. Once inside, his only hope of escape lies with the terrible truth at the heart of Mount Massive.”

“There are already a lot of great games out there about terrifying monsters that eat brains; we want Outlast’s to be scary because you’ll know the enemies you face still have them.”

Red Barrels is also billing Outlast as “a true survival-horror experience,” which could mean just about anything these days. It adds, however, that it’s an independent studio focused on creating single-player games, so I don’t imagine it agrees with the definitions subscribed to by, say, Resident Evil 6 and Dead Space 3.

There’s not much else to say at the moment, but Red Barrels has passed along a fairly impressive-looking teaserthing, so go! Be teased – and perhaps even titillated. But, you know, probably not, because this would be a pretty weird thing to be titillated by.

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Nathan Grayson

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