The Vanishing of Ethan Carter (2014) - Putting the pieces of the puzzle together - 8/10 (20/01/19)
I would like to keep you updated about different new video games I have been trying out recently. The first game I would like to introduce to you is entitled ''The Vanishing of Ethan Carter'' which was released on computer in September 2014 and which will be released on PlayStation 4 in 2015. The adventure game was created by independent Polish studio The Astronauts.
The game tells the story of a detective with paranormal activities who received fan post from a boy named Ethan Carter who observed paranormal activities in his village. When the contact abruptly ended, the detective realized that something must have happened to Ethan Carter and so he visits the fictional and abandoned Red Creek Valley. The detective finds traces of Ethan Carter and his family but also of several cruel murders that happened in and around the village. It seems as if Ethan Carter's family or the entire village had been possessed by something evil that made them commit unspeakable crimes. The detective wants to find out more about that supernatural presence and what happened to Ethan Carter and the other vanished inhabitants.
Among the game's strengths is the diversified open world environment in a fictional village somewhere in the United States of America. From a first person view, the gamer explores at will an unkempt cemetery, a deserted dam, a dense forest, a creepy mine, old roads and railway stations and an abandoned village with different buildings.
The graphics are detailed and realistic and one can observe both bright colours and darker shades that add to the psychological horror atmosphere of the game. A highlight are definitely the graphics when the main character gets to know a story that is briefly taking place in space. The look of the space shuttle, the planets and the stars is absolutely stunning.
The realistic sound, the fitting soundtrack and the slightly twisted story line around some criminal and supernatural investigations add to the dense atmosphere of this adventure game that gets more and more gripping.
The only negative elements are the slight lack of action and true diversity in the different investigations and the rather short length of the game which can be played in a little bit less than eight hours. Minor disadvantages are the fact that one can get literally get lost in the open world environment which looks indeed beautiful but mostly pointlessly empty and a rather random auto-save system where the player doesn't always know when the game was saved last.
In the end, this adventure game is still highly recommendable for those who like atmospheric and paranormal stories, detailed crime investigations and realistic environments with breathtaking graphics. In fact, I've never seen better graphics so far in a video game than in this one and this alone is worth the purchase of this surprisingly great independent game.« DreadOut (2013) - Atmospheric horror video game from Indonesia - 7/10 (20/01/19)Hit and miss - A review of Arch Enemy's Covered in Blood »