I really dig the idea of the Lakeview Cabin Collection [official site], an anthology where ’70s and ’80s horror movie become sandbox murder-adventures. Survivors in terrible situations scavenging odds and sods to create ad-hoc solutions to the problem of ‘someone wants to murder you’.
The first episode (confusingly titled Lakeview Cabin III) was a Friday the 13th-style romp around a lakeside camp. The second arrived on Friday, a bit Texas Chainsaw Massacre with a girl band trying to escape from a murderous cannibal family.
In Lakeview Cabin IV: Curse of the Lake, a poor band find their camper van broken down in the boonies on the other side of the lake, then a screaming bloodied woman flees past them and… well, it all goes downhill from there. What oh what could be going on in the moldering mansion with bodies staked outside and a meat plant beside it? This time around, it has a little randomisation in procedural murdermansion layouts.
It’s difficult to explain quite what Lakeview Cabin is. It’s a bit like an adventure game, but with emergent solutions and murders. You wander around a 2D world collecting, combining, and using objects in ways that feel adventure game-y. Except most of these ‘puzzles’ are oriented towards stopping the people trying to murder you. You might set out some traps, charge in with a shotgun, or create elaborate Home Alone-ish plans like horror movie potential victims often will. You can get pretty dang creative and find some strange things, or you can get drunk, lark about, and get super-murdered. It’s a strange and special sort of sandbox.