September 25, 2013 7:00 AM | Anthony Swinnich
It stands to reason that if you thought you were the only person left in the world after some calamity reduced the rest of the population to shambling monsters you might go a little bit crazy. The psychological effects of this are explored as you attempt to endure in 2D horror game Lone Survivor: The Director's Cut, which just launched on the Playstation Network.
The story begins in the midst of the main character's experience, some undetermined amount of days past what could comfortably be called the end of civilization. You're holed up in an apartment building, but the combination of dwindling supplies and the anxiety of loneliness have reached a boiling point. It's time to get out, to go somewhere safe, to find someone else, to not die alone. The dangerous creatures that listlessly patrol the world are easy enough to dupe if you have rotting meat or can duck into nook and avoid their gaze. The real danger is you.
This game is effectively frightening because you don't know what's real and what's not. Plenty is going on around you, but the danger is somehow more real when you can't reason what is and isn't. Sometimes something that looks like a party when you leave the room ends up a murderous scene painted with the entrails of the people you thought you were talking to when you return. Snooping around and picking up keys, food, guns and other items is somehow more tense when you aren't sure what potential horror may be in the next set of shadows, especially the second time you go through them. The music and sound only serve to add to the tension. Be sure to turn the lights low and wear headphones for this one.
You'll spend a lot of time walking around, picking up items and finding creative uses for them in Lone Survivor. You may also have to shoot a few zombies as well. The actual gameplay is engaging enough to guide your attention to the next bit of story, which is the real star of the game after all. The game is a cross-buy title and costs $12.99 through PSN right now, though Plus subscribers can get it now for $11.99. There are plans to bring this version of the game to PC and Mac through Steam as well.