September 11, 2012 2:00 PM | John Polson
Developers Parsec Productions, Ethereal Entertainment and Elder Productions have banned together to form the Slenderman Mythos Coalition, a trio that aims to offer three visually and mechanically distinct Slender experiences to horror and jump-scare fans. After the recent viral success of Parsec Production's beta of Slender: The Eight Pages, several other Slenderman-scare games gained more visibility, as they reached for a piece of that lanky pie.
Austin Handle of Elder Productions, creator of Crysis 2 mod The Legend, tells IndieGames that he initiated the alliance. He explains, "It seemed like a secure way for us to all work together by NOT copying each other and keeping each experience unique. Also, it definitely holds some friendly competition value. Our three teams are the bigger of the Slenderman-Aspiring development teams in size and finished product. We each have a unique, big-envisioned goal instead of a mini-mod or a new level."
When asked if The Legend will be more thriller or full of jump-scares, Handle says both are fitting. "In the Story mode, you will most definitely experience some jump-terror, however, in the Free-Roam or Multiplayer Modes, you will encounter mostly thriller."
The Legend is not about collecting notes, even though the team's teaser trailer above had the player collecting one. Handle explains, "The teaser trailer had this concept just for a quick idea; the trailer was just to announce to the world that The Legend existed and to show off our graphics. Notes will offer some achievements and background story, but, nothing more. The goal is survival, not collecting a journal. No matter how beneficial that may be."
Handle says most of the team is planning on giving the player a reason for why and how Slender stalks, but they don't want to share too many of the details now. "He could slowly creep up on you, but that's more of a reference to the game-style in Slender by Parsec Productions."
The Legend will be "overwhelmingly different than Slender... You won't be wandering through a Marble Hornets inspired park, searching for notes. You will be trapped as a teenager in a Children's Psychiatric Ward with your 'friends' (Singleplayer: AI, Multiplayer: Actual People) just trying to find a way out: you will be an adult hiding or running for your life in a huge park in the city, [and] you will find yourself in an abandoned derelict."
He says almost every singleplayer map will also have a cooperative counterpart, too. The game will also characterize gear based upon the level and age of the person played. Kids get candles, teenagers get cellphones, and adults get flashlights.
When asked if The Legend will stick to the original Something Awful legend (including daytime stalking), Handle confirms they have some day scenes planned. His team has never spoken to the creator of the slender myth, Victor Surge, but they would love to run some ideas by him.
Mark J. Hadley of Parsec Productions is knee-deep in development but offered a few words to suggest the final version of Slender: The Eight Pages will be significantly different from its beta. "I'm working with some developers right now, and the final version will not only take the main character through multiple areas, but also have a storyline and some additional challenges throughout."
Justin Ross of Ethereal Entertainment is working on Half-Life 2 mod Slender: Source, a multiplayer game originally inspired by Parsec's Slender: The Eight Pages.
He says he feels his team is working on "straight up horror games." Their final game will have little to no jump-scares, which he labels as "cliched and boring." He feels Slender: Source will cater more to psychological rather than physical scares. "I want people to be nervous while playing, and possibly have nightmares when they sleep. Really attack them at a psychological level."
Ross believes Slenderman is creepy because he's so human-like. "For example, take The Silence from Doctor Who. Why do they creep people out? Because they look human, except for the face and the creepy alien hands. I think it's the fact that he seems so human, but isn't. Plus, the legends surrounding him contribute to that too. Someone stalking you, and then not being behind you when you look around. The whole stalking element is what gets to me."
Like Handle's attempt to stick to the original myth, Ross's team has been thinking of incorporating some day-time elements in Slender: Source. Ross hasn't spoken to the myth creator, either, but he says it's something he's meaning to do.