Posts Tagged ‘The Town of Light’

Asylum horror The Town of Light being fancied up

The abandoned ayslum of psychological explore-o-horror The Town of Light [official site] is being spruced up a bit. Developers LKA have been making The Town of Light prettier and a bit bigger for its upcoming console release, see, and say those changes will come back to PC. Our Adam quite liked The Town of Light when it hit last year, especially having visited the real-world ruined asylym it’s set in, so good, good news for folks with a similar horrorhead to that lad. Read the rest of this entry »

The Town Of Light Bucks Horror Tropes, Out Now

Historically, issues of mental health have been too often subjected to misrepresentation in modern media, assuming the false correlation that mental illness is something to be feared. Videogames are as guilty of this as any other medium, and when The Town of Light [official site] first surfaced in 2014 via a crowdfunding campaign, it appeared to follow suit – after all it is set an asylum. Luckily, there’s more to it than that, and its release today means you can now find out why.

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True Horror: The Town Of Light’s Historical Inspirations

Last week, I visited Volterra, an Italian town that is home to the now-derelict Ospedale Psichiatrico di Volterra, a former psychiatric hospital. Upcoming game The Town of Light [official site] is set in that hospital and its grounds, and I had a chance to explore both the virtual recreation and the actual buildings. I also spoke to the team behind the game and Giampaolo di Piazza, a psychiatrist and Vicepresident of the Italian Society of Phenomenological Psycopatology about the history that informs the game.

This is the story of a game that brushes the tropes of the horror genre aside, and finds its sorrow and terrors in the history of a place and a way of thinking.

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Exhuming The Past: The Town Of Light

The Town of Light [official site] is a fascinating game. Initial trailers suggested it would be another in a long line of horror stories playing on the abandoned asylum setting. I expected jump scares, deformed creatures forced into straitjackets and maniacal laughter. Instead, as Alec discovered when he spoke to the developers earlier this year, this is a game concerned with “the true meaning of mental illness”.

As revealed today, the game will be released on February 23rd and I’ve spent a few hours exploring an early build.

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The Town Of Light Trailer Introduces Renee

What an odd beast The Town of Light [official site] is. Per Alec’s preview from Develop last month, it’s Gone Home by way of Silent Hill rather than a traditional horror game. No monsters, no supernatural sub-plot and very little direct threat. A new trailer reveals that you play as Renee, an ex-inmate of Volterra, an infamous and real Italian asylum. She’s returned to the decaying ruin of the institution in the modern day to find the doll pictured above. The doll is not going to turn out to be the physical embodiment of an evil spirit – it’s just a doll she wants back – but the trip could be spooky thanks to realistic atmosphere and aesthetic, produced through thousands of hours of research.

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The Asylum Horror Game That Isn’t A Horror Game

I took a look at the trailers for this Italian-made ‘psychological’ thriller a couple of weeks ago, and worried aloud about whether they’d be able to achieve their stated aim of helping people understand “the true meaning of mental illness” given that The Town Of Light seemed to include many ‘spooky asylum’ tropes.

I played a small section of the game and spoke (via translator) to the Italian team behind The Town Of Light at last week’s Develop conference, and now at least have a clearer idea of what it is.

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The Town Of Light: Horror Tropes Or Genuine Humanity?

Horror games have an asylum level: them’s the rules. No, no arguing, it’s statistically proven to be the only environment human beings can be scared by. Well, fun fairs and orphanages too, but the quintessential horror asylum always has aspects of those anyway. Italian-made ‘psychological-thriller’ The Town Of Light is set in an asylum, therefore I presumed it was a straight-up horror game – but I might be wrong. It’s truly about an asylum, it seems, rather than simply using one as a shortcut for scary things. It’s recreating some 7,000 square metres of the real-life Italian asylum Volterra (which was closed in 1978), includes ‘real clinical documents’ and reckons itself to be concerned with ‘the true meaning of mental illness.’

I’m quite a bit concerned that this seems to involve creepy dolls and squeaky doors, but maybe it’s just trailers doing what trailers need to do?

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