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DreadOut offers a Silent Hill dervative with its own interesting touches

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Dreadout is not Silent Hill: Shattered Memories, although the game contains many features that are found in Konami’s reboot. DreadOut’s story begins when a group of high school students suffers an accident. Linda, the protagonist, gets separated from the group. She must explore the mysteries of the Indoenesian town as she searches for her classmates.

Players should not expect the similarities to the later Silent Hill games to end with the plot. Some of the game’s features are modified or lifted directly from Shattered Memories. Players cannot fight the initial monsters, and a cell phone makes a prominent appearance. The flash light is part of the cell phone.

The game does have some thematic touches of its own. One of the more interesting elements is the way it handles death. When Linda fails to deal with the supernatural creatures roaming the town properly, she winds up in a shadowy nether realm. She must walk toward the angelic shadow before she can return to the hut where she started.

The developers wanted to produce a high-quality independent game. They almost succeeded. The game makes it too easy for some players to succumb to simulator sickness. Allowing the player to lock the camera view would eliminate this problem entirely. (Focus Home Interactive and Frogwares faced this problem in their early Sherlock Holmes games. They corrected in Sherlock Holmes vs. Jack the Ripper by allowing the player to lock the camera in a third-person from behind perspective.)

Simulator sickness can be overcome, but one bug should have been fixed before the game went live. The demo version switched to Indonesian on its own. The Terre Haute PC games examiner had to watch a Youtube video to figure out how to correct the problem.

Like many independent games, it could be good if the developers would take some time to correct these issues. Divergent Happiness may correct these issues in a later patch, but the current version needs some work. It earns 3 out of 5 stars.

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