Released 4 years ago, the palindromic Anna was an interesting idea marred by poor execution: an Amnesia-like set in a single environment that begs to be explored in-depth, it was held back – Adam thought – by a lack of interesting stuff to see and do in those spaces.
Still, devs Dreampainters have shown a laudable commitment to listen to feedback: first, they patched at least a few of Anna’s issues, both technical and gameplay-related. And now, some of Adam’s criticisms are being addressed head-on in their new White Heaven [official site], a horror adventure with greater emphasis on survival elements.
White Heaven will be set in the same universe as Anna, and in a similar place: an isolated hotel in Val d’Ayas, in the Italian Alps. But this time there will be people! Scary scary people. And a weird shadowtentacle creature you can see halfway through the trailer.
The creature will be hunting players throughout the game, and it will be connected to the “Time of Day” system: it will be weaker during the night, only to gain strength after sunrise. Time will pass for the protagonist as well: he’ll get tired and he’ll need sleep, or he won’t be able to run as quickly, and his sight will be disturbed.
In his Wot I Think for Anna, Adam complained, for instance, about the poor UI, and that at times the game became a pixel hunt: White Heaven’s website mentions these complaints more or less explicitly, reassuring that they will not make the same mistakes twice. “As the goal of the game is not to have you pixel-hunt your way around, you’ll very easily know what you can interact [with]” It also says “Compelling Characters”, right under a screenshot of a man’s head that looks like a deflated balloon. I find that quite amusing.
White Heaven should come out in 2016 for Windows. It’s being made in Unreal Engine 4 and yes, will support Oculus Rift.