Friday, February 28, 2014

Patient Screech - SCP: Containment Breach Review

   (version 0.9.3)

   SCP: Containment Breach is a  free, indie, horror-exploration game developed by a small team of people led by Joonas Rikkonen. It's based on a website called SCP Foundation, a collection of thousands of fictional stories about paranormal objects and organisms. You should check it out if you have a few days to spend locked to a computer monitor.

Your full dossier.
   You play the part of a lucky death-row inmate that has been transferred to the SCP facility. Your classification number is D-9341 and you are promised freedom if you cooperate during your stay. You are led into a test room by a few guards to take place in an experiment with SCP-173, a strange concrete statue that only moves when no one is looking at it. The door to the testing area won't close, the lights flicker off, and SCP-173 kills everyone in the room except you. You lucky devil. You are now free to move about the facility, collecting keycards and evading death as you interact with different SCPs and attempt to escape the facility.

   Atmosphere: Sufficiently Creepy
   You walk down dark corridors, the only sound you hear is the loud clop of your footsteps. Your vision is impaired by unnaturally close, dark fog. At any second, an old man can rise up out of the ground and attempt to touch you in special places. This man, SCP-106, along with SCP-173 are likely to be the monsters you see the most, though the game actually contains over 20 different SCPs, currently. Keep in mind, most of the SCPs aren't monsters trying to kill you. Some of them are just objects that can kill you. Luckily for you, they are all labeled.

   There are even some SCPs that don't anything besides add to the ambiance. One SCP only has  a chance to appear on loading screens, while another just periodically flicks across your peripheral vision in an attempt to creep you out. The objective of the game is to scare you, after all, and it succeeds.

   Variety: Nice
   SCP: Containment Breach has quite a lot of replayability. Each map is procedurally generated so the facility doesn't always have the same layout on different playthroughs. You do, however, have the option to play the same map by inputting it's map seed code on the main menu. Also on the main menu are two difficulty levels that allow you to play either with permadeath or saving enabled. This game also features multiple endings depending on your actions and which exit you ultimately attempt to escape through.

   There are also a lot of SCPs you aren't required to interact with in order to beat the game such as SCP-914, a machine that changes any item put into it, or SCP-012, an unfinished musical score that causes you to cut yourself in an attempt to complete it with your blood. So make sure to explore as much as you can to have the most fun.

And be careful of pocket dimensions.
   Blink: What Was That?
   Controls in this game are simple. WASD to move, tab for inventory, shift to sprint and space to... blink. Your character has a blink meter at the bottom left of the screen that constantly decreases. Once you either blink manually or the meter hits zero, causing you to blink anyway,  the meter refills. This mechanic is primarily for interacting with SCP-173, but it has a few other surprise uses...

   Navigation: Maze
   The facility can be a little annoying to walk through. You won't know where you're going, so you can sometimes find yourself walking in circles. However, this does add to the suspense and length of the game.

   Length: Short
   Once you have overcome your fears and trudged through the darkness, you may find that the game isn't all that long. Just remember that this is an open source project, and can easily balloon into something epic if enough support is given to it.

   Final Score: [Redacted]

   If you're looking for a legitimately good horror game to tickle your spine, here it is. Stop playing zombie games, and stop playing Slenderman-clones. SCP: Containment Breach exists.

The kind of villain that's creepy to even create.
   Extra Things to Know
   - You don't need to be facing a button to press it. Use this to more effectively get away from 173 without turning your back to him.
   - F5 to save
   - You can disable the game's intro

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