A Survival Horror title in the vein of Resident Evil, but with influences of Clive Barker and John Carpenter? Sounds like an awesome idea. Solo developer Retrofiction Games certainly thinks so with their upcoming 2D action-adventure title, Dead of Darkness. Currently still in development on Steam, Retrofiction has dropped a new gameplay trailer for the project, which draws cosmic horror inspiration from the likes of Barker and Carpenter, specifically Carpenter’s Apocalypse Trilogy (that would be The Thing, Prince of Darkness and In the Mouth of Madness, if you’re wondering).
Dead of Darkness takes place in England, 1985. Private Investigator Miles Windham is tasked with assisting the local police with missing persons investigation on Velvet Island. But once he arrives on the island, Windham soon realizes that things aren’t quite right. The residents are behaving strangely, with nobody seeming to be interested in clearing up the case. There also appears to be a growing hostility towards the Windham’s presence in the community, which soon escalates into the investigator having to fight to make it off the island alive.
The game checks all of the boxes you’d expect from classic Survival Horror games, with limited resources against numerous enemies, inventory management, exploration and puzzles. Dead of Darkness also mixes things up with a detective feature, where you gather clues and combine them with items or parts of the environment, adding a twist on the familiar puzzle-solving mechanics.
That’s on top of the game adding a sort of sanity mechanic, where each enemy encounter takes a toll on your mental state. The lower your mental state, the stronger the hallucinations you will experience – with some even breaking the fourth wall.
Currently, there’s no release date as of yet for Dead of Darkness, though Retrofiction Games is aiming for a 2024 release.