I’ve been wanting to get back into streaming more, and since I have both a passion for indie games as well as an ever-growing list of either free codes or simply games I need to try out, I figured that one way to satisfy both things would be to stream or record some of them. And, as some of you may know, I have been kicking around the idea of streaming some horror games, particularly late at night, from time to time. Considering how many indie horror games there are (and mainstream ones too), this gives me a nearly endless pool to draw from in that category.
On the evening of May 24-25, 2014, I kicked things off with a strange indie game I came across called The Devil’s Tuning Fork. The first version of this game appeared online back in 2009, and since then, the game has received several minor updates. The game has an interesting premise, and it was its unique graphical style that drew me to play it. Essentially, the player takes the role of an unnamed child who has fallen into a coma at a time when a strange epidemic of children falling into comas is taking place. Upon waking up, you find yourself in a strange alternate reality composed of total darkness, with the only thing providing you with any simple ability to “see” being sound waves. Within the first minute of play, you will acquire the titular item that will allow you to produce, at will, sound waves to better see around in the dark with. Your goal is to explore your strange and haunting environments, rescue the souls of other children trapped here, and escape from whatever unfriendly entity (or entities) have chosen to keep you all hostage here.
The game is short, able to be completed in about an hour’s time for most people who have never touched it. In truth, it’s more of an experience than anything else. The game focuses on puzzle aspects, platforming, and exploring, and it features a haunting soundtrack that draws you into the loneliness of the place you’re exploring. The cries of the scared children echo in the darkness and add to this atmosphere, but (spoiler alert) the fact that you never actually meet whatever’s keeping you here does make it less “scary,” in a sense. However, the creatures certainly do talk to you, and while you’re playing, you never actually know whether you’ll meet them or not, so the sense of urgency remains throughout the first playthrough.
Is it a game that needs to be replayed? That’s debatable, as most of the magic may be lost by then. Yet, it’s worth playing at least once, as it’s quite unique from most games out there, and you can do so right here at the DePaul Game Elites website.
ALLAHWEH’S SCORE: B-
SCARE FACTOR: Atmospherically Haunting