Imagine Amnesia: The Dark Descent crossed with the 1997 movie Cube…then add Satan.
Developer: Dreamverse Entertainment
Publisher: Dreamverse Entertainment
Release Date: TBA
Platform: PC (Windows)
Reviewed on: PC (Windows)
Ouroboros: Prelude is a first-person horror game that feels very similar to the Amnesia series. It has a simple idea. You are trapped in a winding labyrinth and must find a way out of the maze. It wouldn’t be much of a game, however, if this was actually simple.
The game is currently in Early Access right now so it wouldn’t be right to review it. Instead, I’ll be providing you with my first impressions of the game.
It’s extremely dark so you will probably need to turn the brightness all the way up. If you intend to actually see what’s happening on the screen that is and it’s definitely worth having a look at these graphics. The game looks very good and has enough horror elements to make it feel claustrophobic and spooky.
It’s dark for a reason however, players need to hunt for light sources in the darkness to help them navigate this creepy maze. Candles are scarce and by the time you’ve found them, your sanity is completely gone. When something spooky happens to your character, the screen will go red and it doesn’t get much better for you from there.
The developers have created a lush range of different rooms to explore and frantically search for keys and candles in. Many of the rooms are designed beautifully so that each one feels different to the one before. As a result, there’s a lot to see in this game and experience. It definitely fits what the developers have said about “no playthrough is the same”. Additionally, each playthrough is a new dungeon thanks to the randomization so there’s no use attempting to map it. Every time you replay it, you’ll be stumbling blindly through a maze.
The creatures in this game are well… the first time I encountered one in the maze, my brown trouser protocol was initiated. It’s possible to go hours and even several sessions without seeing one of these strange creatures. The monsters are very scarce and it does increase the tension as a result. When one of these things do turn up, you’ll run for your life and end up lost deeper in the maze. Being caught by one of them does result in death so running further into the maze is probably for the best.
However, there is a downside from having to run away. Sprinting on stairs is not possible right now. So, if you get chased up some stairs you’re pretty dead. Your character will decide to slowly meander up the stairs instead of running for their lives as they should be. Expect to be eaten by the monsters when this happens.
While the stairs issue is annoying, interacting with objects is a horrible experience. Picking up objects is actually very challenging as you can only pick an object up by finding the correct spot on it. It may not sound too bad at first but trying to pick up a chair by finding a specific corner on it is pretty frustrating after a few minutes. Some of the walls and floors can actually be destroyed to progress into the next area… so of course, it’s tricky to find out where this specific spot is. It’s a nice mechanic to have but it’s something that does need some adjusting as it ruins immersion.
Ouroboros: Prelude is a very promising horror game. There’s a great atmosphere with plenty of tense moments however, there are still a few issues with the game that the developer needs to deal with. It’s a game that you’ll find yourself playing for hours as you scramble for an exit from the darkness and the creatures that it hides. There might not be a story to it but the replay value alone makes it very worth playing.
- Great atmosphere
- It’s like a simple, single-levelled Amnesia meets Slender
- Nice replay value
- Some mechanics need to be worked on
- When the sanity is gone the screen/effect is a tad over the top
- Scarcity of portable light sources