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Frictional Games

Frictional Games' SOMA brings true horror to PS4

Jun 19 // Alessandro Fillari
[embed]292979:58725:0[/embed] In an underwater research station, you play as an engineer, Simon, who must uncover the mysteries behind the disappearances and deaths of the crew. After finding himself alone in an unknown part of the station, he discovers that things have taken a turn for the worse as machines begin inhabiting human characteristics. Some robots have even gone rogue after merging with the biology of the deep, and will hunt down anything they find. Using his own resourcefulness and whatever gadgets he can find, Simon will have to evade these horrors to reach safety. Following the school of design found in Amnesia: The Dark Descent, the player will not have any weapons at their disposal to take on whatever creatures they encounter. And gadgets and other support tools to help evade the creatures will only do just that. The name of the game is evasion, and hiding behind crates or other furniture scattered around is usually your best bet. Much like studio's previous title, this can make encounters incredibly nerve-wracking. Though my session only had one real encounter with one of the deep-sea abominations, I got pretty tense during it. That sure made solving the puzzle to escape more challenging. The environment is an interesting setting as well. The underwater research facility is dank and in disrepair, and with the horrors of the deep seeping into the facility, it feels like an industrialized take on the Lovecraftian aesthetic. While venturing through the halls of the station, you'll come across the bodies of workers that still possess clues and other secrets. As each member has in internal black-box installed, you can experience their last moments in audio-log form. It's a clever take on the mechanic, and it does a lot to flesh out the story as well. Though I only had a brief session with SOMA, I found the developers made something that felt like a more natural evolution of Amnesia -- a continuation of the same hide-and-seek-style horror that many fans loved. And in such a rich setting, surprises are in store. Without saying too much, there's a lot more going on with the character's journey and his surroundings than you might think.
SOMA preview photo
Releasing September 22 for PC and PS4
Even though it doesn't seem that long ago, it's been five years since a group of indie developers struck it big with the release of Amnesia: The Dark Descent. The game became a hit with players looking for...

SOMA photo
SOMA

I'm avoiding all SOMA trailers after this


(Yeah, right)
Jun 11
// Jordan Devore
This is the point at which I'm starting to feel like I've seen too much of SOMA, Frictional Games' underwater sci-fi horror title for PC and PlayStation 4. I'd like to avoid any additional footage that comes in between now and launch on, shit, September 22? That's going to be tough. The new video is less straight footage and more of a snappy trailer, but it raises further questions.
SOMA photo
SOMA

SOMA looks like a worthy successor to Amnesia


Releasing this September for PC and PS4
May 29
// Jordan Devore
A series of live-action videos and an alternate-reality game have led to this: 12 minutes of uncut footage from Frictional's next first-person horror title, SOMA. It's coming to PC and PS4 at long last on September 22, 2015....

Underwater horror photo
Underwater horror

Mighty strange stuff is afoot in this live-action SOMA video


Time to pack up and go home
May 27
// Jordan Devore
"There's something wrong, isn't there?" Yes, Harry. Something is deeply wrong. I'm staying far away from the alternate-reality game for SOMA. Not because I'm not interested in what Frictional Games is cooking up for its unde...
SOMA photo
SOMA

The SOMA ARG's spilled a new trailer


Those whales are biding their time...
May 26
// Joe Parlock
I've never understood ARGs. Hidden in a bit of code is a link to a server that an art designer for the game’s mother’s dog once owned. Once you’ve cracked that server in all 17 dimensions you’ll final...
Underwater horror photo
Underwater horror

SOMA is in beta, but we can't play it (and that's probably for the best)


It's just you and me now, Omnitool
Apr 15
// Jordan Devore
The next spooky game from the team behind Amnesia: The Dark Descent is officially in beta. No, you can't play it yet. Neither can I. But around 40 people are testing a "pretty much" content-complete build of SOMA right now, w...
Spooky scary creeps photo
Spooky scary creeps

Frictional says 'sorry for the silence' with a SOMA screenshot


The PS4 / PC beta should be here before long
Feb 25
// Jordan Devore
I'm with Steven -- the ocean, pretty as it is, can also be petrifying. What just brushed against me? The studio behind Penumbra and Amnesia: The Dark Descent is plunging into the depths with SOMA, its next horror title, and t...

SOMA is underwater horror with flashy monsters & average crabs

Apr 04 // Steven Hansen
SOMA (PC [previewed], PS4)Developer: Frictional GamesPublisher: Frictional GamesRelease: 2015 SOMA tries to build tension, true to Frictional's strength in the survival-horror sphere. I started in a weird, sprawling series of pipes or vents of some kind. It was a little like being lost as a kid in a McDonald's PlayPlace. A blend of sensory deprivation and sensory overload (loud ass colors) coupled with twists and turns could get you proper lost when your birthday cake was still marked with individual candles.  Except this was darker and every step I made was loud and obnoxious, which was terrifying. Sound design is so important to horror and with A Machine for Pigs' sound designer in tow, SOMA has some good sounds. Dropped into this dark world without context -- sitting, in real life, in a dark room illuminated only by a television -- each clumsy step felt like I was ringing a dinner bell for potential monsters to gobble me up. [embed]272832:53251:0[/embed] So I had already psyched myself out. I fumbled my way in the dark over what appeared to be -- but couldn't be (?) -- encroaching roots (tentacles?) that erupted from the ground and forced themselves into computer consoles. I'd later learn that I was in some sort of underwater facility rather than deep space. I don't know if that makes the tendrils less or more terrifying. Testament to the sound design, and some played upon Pavlovian training, every time I pushed a loud, scary button, I was prepared for the first. Instead, I was just treated to aggressive buzzing and failing mechanics like I was trying to start a Ford Taurus. After some questionable interaction with possibly benevolent people and more broken machinery, I ended up out in the open ocean itself, doomed to hoof it to my next location. The build I played didn't have any aesthetic indicator I was trudging around in a deep sea suit. The team apparently tried to overlay a helmet in the foreground, but it didn't work quite right, so they're retooling. SOMA's not out until 2015, anyway. But I definitely think that will be the way to go for any underwater portions. One of my favorite things about Metro is how it uses the first-person perspective to emphasize point of view rather than act as a camera on wheels. Putting on your gas mask grounded it. Seeing cracks in a damaged mask was cool. Walking the sea floor was relaxing, but ominous. There was still that tension, even though I still hadn't encountered anything that tried to kill me. There was even some levity when I spent a couple minutes following a scuttling crab.  I trudged my way into another abandoned underwater station, this one opened like a sieve and fully flooded, leaving bits of algae or some such water plant pollen clouding up the place while I touched weird things and hallucinated a bit. By the end of my time with SOMA, I was treated to its monsters and more traditional, stealth-based gameplay. Running, walking, and crawling emit different volumes of sound. There is a nifty lean function for peering around corners. Also for inadvertently frightening yourself as you position yourself just right and begin your slow lean only to get a face full of scary light up monster. They look a bit like old dive suits with creepy, lit up faces, and I look forward to cowering in fear of them more thoroughly next year.
Preview: SOMA photo
When you gaze long into the abyss, Ed Harris gazes back
When I see the name SOMA, all capitalized as Amnesia developer Frictional is wont to stylize, I think of my dentist. Because that's its name. And it's not a scary thought. I never had frightening associations with dentistry, ...

SOMA photo
SOMA

Frictional's horror game SOMA has a new setting


'If you dive down any distance you enter into a realm of monsters'
Apr 03
// Jordan Devore
Frictional Games' sci-fi horror title SOMA is seemingly dropping its "sci-fi" theme. (Or is it?) As revealed in a blog post written by creative director Thomas Grip, the secret is out: "our next game will be set deep below t...
 photo
DTOID News is brought to you by new socks
Hey gang! Here's your Destructoid news update for this Thursday. I dabbled in some non-gaming news, I hope you don't mind. There are a lot more exciting movie trailers this week than there are game trailers. The news: Fallou...

Sci-fi horror photo
Sci-fi horror

Frictional lets imaginations run wild in this SOMA video


A look at where the bad things will take place
Dec 12
// Jordan Devore
Its just over a minute of in-engine footage, but it's SOMA footage nonetheless. This is the new sci-fi horror title from Frictional Games, makers of Amnesia: The Dark Descent, in case you missed those teasers. The video itse...
Frictional's new game photo
More first-person horror from Frictional Games
Amnesia creator Frictional Games knows horror, I think we can all agree. There have been some intriguing videos about the team's next project, SOMA, to help set the sci-fi mood. Now we have the mother of all teaser trailers ...


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