Alone in the Dark, the video game that launched survival gaming and set the standard within the genre, returns with an extraordinary action-packed within a highly detailed, free-roaming environment, featuring a mixture of astonishing real-time physics and full environmental interaction.
There's something strange and frightening happening in the middle of New York City's Central Park; something whispered to have been intentionally kept secret; something that players are compelled to explore in Alone in the Dark.Known today as a safe haven for New Yorkers yearning for relief from the stresses of their chaotic metropolis, history records that Central Park was built on a useless swamp, yet as the New York City skyline hurtled towards the sky over the last 150 years, making the city the most expensive real estate in the world, the park has remained untouched. Why? Civic pride? Perhaps, but the recent strange happenings in and around the park are casting doubt on that, doubts that require investigating.
The return of an iconic series
Paranormal PI Edward Carnby. View larger.
Stunningly spooky views of NYC. View larger.
The odd wildlife of Central Park. View larger.
A whole new inventory system. View larger.
Enter Edward Carnby, Paranormal Investigator Despite the title, Alone in the Dark is actually the fifth game in a series that dates back to 1992 and centers around the experiences of Edward "the reptile" Carnby. A paranormal investigator by trade, Carnby is looking for answers to the strange events and horrific creatures reported in and around the park, but gets more than he bargained for when all the mysteries and terrors of the park spill out over the course of one apocalyptic night. It's the player's task to avoid the new frightening dangers of the park as you search for the answers to what these supernatural occurrences mean and why they are happening.Gameplay Based on Full Player Immersion Packed full of action and vivid in its realism Alone in the Dark goes to the extreme to keep players engaged and immersed by plunging them into the heart of the action in real-time at every turn and challenging them to survive using full movement control. The goal here is to allow players to do or at least feel that they can do more or less whatever is possible in real life, within the game.Need to avoid a blast of steam or an eruption of fire that has shot up in your path? You can simply side-step it or you can handle the obstacle with a little more panache by using the environment around you, for example by swinging around it using reachable pipes or wires. In another situation you may be challenged by attacking monsters. No problem. You can take the path of least resistance, again by side-stepping them or placing an obstacle between yourself and them, but if you are feeling like taking out a little aggression you can pick up a board, chair, box, etc. and have at it. Nearly anything that you come across that would be usable in real life is usable in game and can be wielded in several different ways.In addition, game developer Eden Studios has done away with a few in-game conventions in favor of real life upgrades. Instead of old-fashioned health bars Alone in the Dark uses realistic body damage and physiological effects to show players how much damage has been done to Carnby by the new dangerous nightlife of Central Park. Basically this means if Carnby has been taking a licking he's going to be a little bloody. Monsters use sensory perception of all kinds to find their victims, so players need to keep aware of Carnby's physical state, as well as the impact he has on his surroundings. Also gone are traditional inventory systems that take players out of the game while you switch or check items in your possession, replaced by an in-game inventory system where items are carried in the folds of Carnby's trench coat. This allows you to stay in the action the whole time. Sticking with the realism theme, the number of items that Carnby can carry is limited, but since ingenuity is built into the system, items can be combined or their uses altered, mostly with tape, so players can adjust as challenges arise.TV Style Intensity That Keeps You Hooked Built around a unique television style episodic narrative game structure, the storyline of Alone in the Dark is split into a number of distinct 30-40 minute episodes, doled out one at a time as you play. This new way to progress through the storyline ensures that players can enjoy the game regardless of the amount of time they have available without ever feeling lost. Each time a saved game is launched, the episode will begin with a video summary of the previous episode to quickly re-immerse the player in the story, removing the need to remember where you were or what you were doing at the end of your last play session. In addition, every episode will also close with a nail-biting, cliff-hanger ending to rattle players' nerves. And when you choose to leave the game, a video teaser of the next episode will play to leave players always wanting more.Vivid Photographic Rendering Even on a bad day, and this will be a bad one, Central Park and New York City are something to see. With Game developer Eden's proprietary Twilight technology and rendering engine, players can expect to see everything from the City's famous landmarks to the manifestations of the evil that have been festering in Central Park come to life as if you were there. This lavishly detailed game world takes advantage of highly realistic and advanced cinematographic effects including depth of field, camera focus, numerous light sources, moisture, reflections and High Dynamic Range effects.Whether it's the innovative game play, the unique episodic game structure, the advanced physics or the return of a ground-breaking protagonist recast in the modern era, Alone in the Dark holds something for players willing to take on the mysteries and dangers at the heart of Central Park.
A New Inventory System ? Players utilize the pockets of protagonist Edward Carnby to hold items which they can view, switch and combine without leaving the game.
Narrative intensity ? Taking its cues from blockbuster TV dramas, the story is told in a TV season style narrative structure based around episodes that deliver maximum intensity throughout and keep the player hooked.
A Captivating Story ? Centered in iconic Central Park long-time series protagonist and paranormal specialist Edward Carnby returns to delve into the frightening events occurring in the Big Apple.
Real World Rules ? In-Game movement has been designed to allow players to do almost anything that is physically possible in the real world.
Photographic Rendering ? Game developer Eden?s Propriety ?Twilight? technology creates a lavishly detailed game world with highly realistic and advanced cinematographic effects.
Case study in potential ruination with bad controls This is a very memorable game for me. It's the only game that I actually quit playing because of the bad controls. I almost gave up on Shadow of the Colossus because of crap controls, but at least there was somewhat of a payoff for muddling through. Not here. Classic case of development culture ignoring the value of "average joe" usability testing. I bet when they finally did get to external user testing and realized "oohhhhhh crap", the shrink wrap machine was already heating up. ...more info
Warning: Bad console port! Do not waste your time. This thing SCREAMS "bad console port". While the controls supposedly support both first-person and third-person views, the first-person one only lacks visible duct-tape to show how badly it was grafted on. If you try to use first-person view, it automatically switches you to third-person view at the worst possible time (like when you are in a fight). In some cases, it won't even allow you to switch back to first-person view until you solve the current puzzle or win the fight you are in. The controls are just plain bad. Want to use the standard "WASL" keys to move around? Sorry, those only work in third-person view! So, when it switches view for you, YOUR CURRENT MOVEMENT KEYS STOP WORKING!
Don't even get me started on the difficulty of dragging bodies around, which you are required to do to kill them. Or the time the bad guy got stuck INSIDE A WALL, WHICH MADE IT IMPOSSIBLE TO TO KILL HIM! I had to go back to the last FIXED save point and start the encounter all over again. Oh, I didn't mention the supposed quick-save doesn't actually save you where you are, but back at the last "planned" save point? Um, neither does the manual.
There are many other bad points to this game, but I have already wasted enough time just trying to play it. Save your money. Buy something else....more info
Really really bad I played this game until I got the first bad guy/gal. Trying to fight her was horrible. The fighting was slow, hard to control and I couldn't even swing the objects. I was smashing the hit button over and over and they guy would just not do anything. I promptly unistalled it and will try not to think of the wasted money on it.
It also took like an hour to load which I don't totally understand. Maybe it was my computer.
Manifests badly on a PC I bought this game at target for $7.98, and I would return it if I could.
The ideas behind it are interesting and innovative, and the graphics are spectacular. Gameplay on the PC, however, can only be described as painful. The controls are awkward, and the puzzles are, too often, situations you can only figure out by dying over and over again (starting too far back each time). Movement is a major issue, one that I assume works out much better on one of the console versions.
If you are interested in trying it out, don't try the PC version. ...more info
Good, with a few setbacks, but still a great game. Alone in the dark was different for me, as I have never played any other in the series. I was expecting something much different since I played the Wii version before, which sucked.
Gameplay- Playing the game involves some cool puzzles, but some areas are frustrating! (one are I spent around an hour on even though it lasted only a few minutes, it was the first major driving scene). One interesting aspect is that the standard enemies (I saw them called humanz in a walkthrough) can only be killed by fire (with the stronger ones requiring more fire introduced before dying). The driving aspect of the game is cool, as the physics aren't the most realistic, but thats not really a bad aspect of a game which most of the game is spent on foot. The game is different from other survival horror games because you get more than enough ammo, so you can be creative (shooting doors apart when you dont have time for example). The healing system is cool, I like the difference from when it is a small wound or a bleeding one (which can only be treated with the rare bandage, and you leave a blood trail which attracts monsters). The 3rd person cam is almost impossible to use, so I go to my preferred view of first person.
Graphics- Not the best, but they are good enough for me to get an easy grasp on the world around me, and also good enough to look into detail on objects. The fire doesn't look the best, but we have been spoiled with games like Far Cry 2 and such (both games have fire which spreads realistically, but Far Cry has better graphics, being newer).
Features- items play a large role in this game, and with a limited inventory (nope, no more carrying 1 ton with elder scrolls, still that is a good game series though, elder scrolls) you must decide what you most need, whether you use your flashlight and need batteries, or you load up on ammunition. The game also uses combining items as an important feature, such as moving a the liquid from a 3/10 full bottle to a 7/10 full bottle for a full bottle that is more explosive (when shot or used as a molotov). Also, you can use the liquid on explosive bottles to pour on you ammunition giving you 1 clip load of incendiary rounds (as in they damage those humanz, if you shoot em in the right place, or they set a wooden object on fire from far away) which arent realistic, but they are awesome!
In conclusion, alone in the dark 5 is a great game with a few flaws that require patience, the tab key, and maybe a walkthrough (which won't ruin the game... they never get it thorough enough to do THAT)....more info
Decent Game with Creativitiy already known about it before, so ok with most of the parts, yet still waiting for the patch to fix the problems...more info
its about time love this game, major upgrade from the previous games. only problem is in order to play you must register the cd key :( thats a crock of $#%@%. not to mention the game requires at least a 16+ pipe gpu graphic card to play at defaults. I use 2 12 pipe cards that barely do the job :(. controls are kinda messed up to, reason for only 3 stars.
its funny in less than 1 month the games price dropped 50% good thing I bought mine for less than 50% of the msrp :)and yes it was brand new still had the security sticker on it with the wrap....more info
Beta Testers were in the Dark. I have played games my whole life. There are few that I have come across that I hate. There are few that I say without a personal taste disclaimer not to buy. But Alone in the Dark is a gaming crime. I have no idea what Atari was thinking by releasing this game. I am playing it on a PC and it feels like it was designed for a console, I only hope that it plays better on a console. But did anyone actually play this game before it was released? Did they do any type of beta testing with someone other than the designers?
Forget about the horrible camera angles and the absolutely frustrating off centered bogged down fight/hit zones. What really takes the cake on this abomination is trying to figure out the one and only one way through this "rail shooter", only problem is that the rail; derails you. You must some how figure out the one magical trigger point that needs to be crossed in order to move on, but it might not work because some glitch that happened a earlier in the game.
In short - Bad Camera Angles, Horrible Interaction Angles, Rail Shooter than can't even stay on the Rail. Stay far far away from this one.
I usually sell my games on ebay once I am done with them. This one I am in a moral delima because it is so bad, I feel I would be ripping someone off. I guess I'll post a disclaimer and try to recoup some of the $50 that Atari took from me for this abomination.
Amazing Graphics, Terrible Gameplay You can just tell that this game was ported to PC (very badly) from the console games. The keys are so random and most cannot be configured. You cannot strafe unless in the first person view, but the first person view doesn't allow you to do much of anything except walking, and within a few seconds the game will switch you back to the third person view. I usually stick with a game even if it doesn't seem great, but I barely played this for a half hour before I quit. The first 15 minutes or so of the game require you to press a key to blink every few seconds or your vision gets blurred, which makes it extremely hard to pay attention to the story line. The only plus was that the graphics look amazing, especially the detail of people's faces....more info
Alone in the Dark is now Alone in the TRASH This game is the one that made me finally decide to switch to video gaming. I'm tired of paying $50 for a PC game and it turns out to be unplayable. This is one of the worst games I have ever seen. The controls are terrible. So I went out and bought an XBOX 360 and hooked it up to my monitor and speakers. It looks and sounds great. Also I noticed the price on this game has dropped $20 since it was released just over a month ago. That should tell you something....more info
Not worth the trouble Quite frankly it started off as a decent game and I was interested to see where the plot would go however it quickly became tedious thanks to the horrible controls. Forget trying to fend off the creatures with a keyboard/mouse. The xbox 360 controller for windows solves part of the problem but they could have done a much better job with the control mapping. I did enjoy some of the driving missions and the game has a decent soundtrack, but not much else going for it. ...more info
Hello, Microsoft? Perfect example of the slime that makes its way from the Xbox trash receptical to the Games for Windows! marketing drive.
A) Immediately upon entering the menu and selecting "configuration", I am trapped. Not frozen (the mouse moves) but no button on my keyboard or mouse click returns from "calibrating" to any part of the game. I am forced to quit. So I can't change any settings. Sweet. That and the sensitivity in game is so high that a twitch of the mouse does a 360...
1980's keyboard game with 2006 graphics Good grief, how can you spend so much time making the visuals so cool, then expect us to direct the action through the keyboard, VF LAME !! mega loss of cred, game merits 1.123 points out of 11.23, i.e Sucks....more info
Oh man, this one is really bad.... This is probably one of the most horribly executed games pertaining to game play in history. This is the only game I have ever actually returned to Amazon for a credit. ...more info
Save your money and your disk space
I agree with everything said about the horrible controls--super frustrating and NOT fun. The screen shots look awesome, but I never got that far because I was walking into furniture and door frames for an hour--while pushing a key to blink my eyes so I could see. ...more info