Review: Classic and Modern Survival Horror Collide in Remake

THQ Nordic’s Alone in the Dark reboot brings back classic survival horror elements

THQ Nordic’s reboot of the classic survival horror game Alone in the Dark is making waves in the gaming world with its faithful recreation of classic survival horror elements. Known for its confounding puzzles, bewildering navigation, fixed camera angles, cumbersome melee combat, claustrophobic settings, and inventory management, the survival horror genre has a loyal fan base that appreciates these challenging aspects.

Alone in the Dark maintains these elements while offering a modern twist, as players can choose from various difficulty levels for the puzzle challenges, striking a balance between old-school mechanics and modern conveniences. The plot revolves around the investigation into the disappearance of Jeremy Hartwood, with players taking control of either his niece, Emily, or private investigator Edward Carnby.

Set in 1920s Louisiana and New Orleans, the game features a richly detailed Southern Gothic vibe, capturing the period aspects with a Hollywoodized sheen. The game’s setting in the complex hub location of Derceto provides a platform for players to solve puzzles and uncover secrets in order to progress through the game.

While the game excels in writing, character development, puzzles, exploration, world-building, and music, it falls short in combat mechanics. Combat encounters are buggy and lack polish, particularly in the melee combat and stealth mechanics. The game’s enemy designs have also been criticized for being unmemorable and lacking creativity.

Overall, Alone in the Dark offers a protracted escape room experience with charismatic leads, a campy tone, and film noir-inspired dialogue. Despite its flaws in combat mechanics, the game’s strengths make it a must-play for fans of the survival horror genre.

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