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Freeware Garden: All The Way Down

Always appreciate a sturdy bartender.

Drawing inspiration from Lovecraft’s famous The Shadow Over Innsmouth All The Way Down is a short but lovely horror adventure game by Sanctuary Interactive. An adventure set in chilly rural Yorkshire which helps you feel the cold.

Cold and darkness are two of the main ingredients that help the game achieve its atmosphere and the player to experience a sense of increasing hopelessness and dread. A sense of being trapped in a secluded, off-the-map village that could have been built with the sole purpose of serving as a birthplace for spooky tales.

Ahem.

Actually, it’s a masterfully realized and realistic setting. One you’ll enjoy trying to escape from, especially as All The Way Down is brilliantly paced and gradually builds anticipation until its sadly abrupt finale. What’s more, it’s a setting supported by an equally intriguing plot involving something most probably unnameable and a village-wide conspiracy.

Add in some unexpectedly well-voiced, sharp dialogue by ominous characters accompanied by unsettling portraits and you have a superb game that never lets overtly complicated puzzles get in the way of plot.

Just allow the deceptively pleasant backgrounds to pull you into the darkness of it all and the excellent pixel-art graphics to do their job by letting your imagination fill in all the gaps and you’ll deeply appreciate just how wisely designed All The Way Down really is.

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Konstantinos Dimopoulos

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