So, you've grit your teeth, bit your nails, and mustered up the courage to see Amnesia: Rebirth through to completion. Now what? The scares shouldn't just end with the rolling of the credits, right? This week, Frictional updated the game with a patch that lets you play custom, player-created stories, along with all the tools you'd need to make a bespoke first-person spooker yourself.
Casting your mind back to 2010, you'll mind that Amnesia: The Dark Descent's popularity wasn't just based off its then-novel horror campaign. Much of the game's popularity with YouTubers was its support for custom maps, feeding us an endless supply of men in their 20s screaming at brand new scare-narios. Now, this year's long-overdue sequel hopes to carry that legacy forwards with its own modding tools.
Released last night, patch 1.2 adds a "Custom Stories" option to the main menu. These can be downloaded as expected from the game's Steam Workshop hub, or else downloaded elsewhere and placed in Rebirth's mods directory. Of course, you need tools to make the stories, and so Frictional have also packaged in a suite of tools used to create the game proper.
A Level Editor and Model Editor now exist in the game's install directory - the latter used to construct props and assets used to bulk out spaces in the former. As a starting point, Frictional have also made it easy to open up missions from their own campaign to get a feel for how things work, though there's also some official documentation should you hit a brick wall.
Alice Bell did enjoy the game, praising Frictional's expertise in managing to instil fear even in broad daylight in her Amnesia: Rebirth review. But overall she found the story unfocused, trying to juggle too many elements and losing the kind of razor-sharp existential terror the devs managed to achieve with SOMA.
"I trust Frictional implicitly to do very interesting things, but though Rebirth takes a run at a bunch of cool and alarming concepts, it feels like it’s juggling too many to do any one of them full justice. Rebirth hasn’t haunted me since closing it in a way that Soma did, for example." Let's see if the modding community can pick up the slack and give us a story that haunts us for good, shall we?
This week's update also adds a number of smaller fixes, visible in the 1.2 patch notes.