Supermassive Games has become the birthplace of interactive horror games. They made a name for themselves in the horror genre with Until Dawn in 2015 and have continued to release horror games ever since. Like many Until Dawn fans, I’ve always wondered why the game never received a sequel or sequel. Well, after six years, Supermassive has finally released one: The Quarry.
The largest takeaways
- The game is a worthy successor to 2015’s Until Dawn, combining thrills with clever story techniques.
- Choices make the difference between life and death as you control eight characters throughout the game.
- Justice Smith, Brenda Song, Evan Evagora, Ariel Winter, and David Arquette add star appeal to the story, making it a good B-movie horror.
- At $70, many may find the game too expensive.
The Quarry is a game with a great cast
In the years since Until Dawn, Supermassive has nearly perfected video game graphics. The first thing you’ll notice about The Quarry is how attractive it is. The way the character models react to light and shadow makes the game feel like something out of a horror movie. Performance capture has also been improved here. The faces of the actors are recorded while they perform the motion capture, allowing you to see every little movement of their faces during the game. Like Until Dawn, the game features a cast of famous actors.
You’ll find yourself pointing at the screen watching Justice Smith, Brenda Song, Evan Evagora, Ariel Winter, and David Arquette. The game’s story centers on Hackett’s Quarry, a summer camp in the woods. It’s time for the camp counselors to go home, except they can’t leave due to a car malfunction. They are forced to spend one more night there and end up living a night full of horrors.
The cast does a great job with their performances. No one felt they were being called on the phone or exaggerated. My favorite was Brenda Song as Kaitlyn. It was the first time she had seen her in anything other than “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody” on Disney Channel and she did great. She was the perfect combination of sarcastic and serious and it made me want to see her play more roles like this.
All the other characters are great too. Travis, played by Ted Raimi, is so creepy and disturbing in capturing the performance of the game, especially during the opening moments of the game. The game’s story is the perfect homage to the horror genre. This cast of characters was tailor-made for a story as cheesy and fun as this one. Fortunately, you spend enough time with each camp counselor to learn more about them.
Decisions, decisions, decisions
Over the course of the game’s 10 chapters, you will control all 8. While controlling a character, you can explore certain areas to find clues, evidence, and tarot cards. Clues can give more information about a particular character or location. Finding evidence will affect the ending of the game and what the audience knows about the supernatural activity in Hackett’s Quarry. Tarot cards can give players a glimpse into a potential future, allowing them to reconsider the choices they can make.
These options make up the bulk of The Quarry gameplay. They can be as simple as deciding how to react to an insult or saving someone’s life. What makes elections so great is that no matter how simple they may seem, they matter. Acting like a sarcastic jerk towards a character can make them not like you. Asking a character for advice instead of just acting can make another character disrespect you. You’ll find that you want a reload checkpoint option so you can go back and undo your bad choices.
There may not be any checkpoints in the game, but a similar feature does exist. If you win the game at least once, you will have the option to use Death Rewind. If you own the Deluxe Edition of the game, you will automatically unlock it before you start playing the game for the first time. This gives you three lives for one game. These lives can be used to save a character’s life.
The only downside to this feature is that while it saves a character’s life, it sometimes causes you to lose progress to do so. Jacob died at some point during my playthrough, so the game forced me to replay about 20 minutes of gameplay in order to make a decision that would save his life. In another example, a character dies because I was too slow to react. The game rewound a minute earlier and allowed me to try again. It’s a nice feature that most interactive games don’t have, but I wish it didn’t take so long.
Despite my best efforts, I couldn’t keep everyone alive at the end of the game and ended up with what is considered to be the worst ending. Had he not hesitated, he would have gotten what is considered the best ending. Without spoiling any of the endings, I will say that the game doesn’t complain and manages to pull off some interesting twists before the credits roll. Speaking of credits, if you collect a lot of evidence during your game, you’ll want to sit through the credits.
Perfect for casual, but is it worth the full price?
The Quarry is a game that is sure to appeal to casual gamers and people who don’t even play the game. It’s something that people can just sit back and watch on YouTube or play with their friends thanks to the game’s cooperative mode and movie mode, which allows players to watch scenes from the game like a horror movie.
My only problem with this game may be the price. The standard versions of PS5 and Xbox Series X | S costs 69.99. I received a 2K code for the PS5 version and was shocked when I saw the price on the PSN store. My entire game lasted 10 hours. For many, $70 is a steep price to pay for eight to 10 hours of content, but we’ll let you be the judge. Branching options provide replay value, but it still mostly follows similar story beats.
As the credits rolled, I found myself wanting to re-download Until Dawn after finishing my second playthrough of The Quarry, of course. I enjoyed my time with this game. As a casual fan of horror movies, it’s perfect for me. It feels like a passionate love letter to the genre filled with all the iconic tropes and stereotypes. It also has a lot of replay value thanks to the many paths you can take depending on your decisions made during the campaign. It’s another hit for Supermassive Games and I can’t wait to see what they do next.