Noob Reviews: Outlast
This review will be based on Xbox One gameplay. Although I have attempted to avoid spoilers, there may be some included to help explain specific points.
What is Outlast?
Taking on the role of an investigative journalist named Miles Upshur, you must delve into the dark and twisted secrets of a psychiatric hospital, called Mount Massive Asylum, in the wilds of Colorado. To uncover the truth after receiving a mysterious email detailing inhumane experiments been carried out on the patients there from a whistleblower within the hospital’s very own team (which also happens to be the premise for the DLC we will also be taking a look at separately).
Unable to go on the offensive against the many threats you will come across deep within the bowels of the Mount Massive, you must keep your wits about you and harness the various defensive abilities you have at your disposal. From barricading doors to hiding under beds, in cupboards or running for your life. But do not fear, to aid you in navigating the dilapidated site. You can use your trusty camcorder to not only record what you are seeing, to use as supporting evidence for your report, but also a night vision setting for when the lights go out. And the lights will not only go out (frequently) but hold many terrifying hostiles whose screams will haunt the darkness around you.
Do you have a trailer to show us?
- Official launch trailer linked from Red Barrels’ YouTube channel -
What genre is the game?
Outlast is definitely a hardcore survival horror game.
Who created Outlast?
Outlast was created by the Red Barrels team, who both developed and produced the game themselves.
How long is the game?
As with most games, there is a vast amount of collectables in Outlast, that comes in the form of medical reports, letters and recordings. Depending on whether or not you want to simply survive and escape or achieve full completion, you are looking at between six to ten hours.
My personal playthrough took just over six and a half hours, but I did admittedly miss thirty-four per cent of the collectables according to the achievements.
When was the game released? And what platform(s) is it available on?
Outlast was released on PC in September 2013 and then on PlayStation 4 in February 2014, Xbox One in June 2014 and Linux in March 2015. The last platform to get Outlast was the Nintendo Switch in February 2018.
What is the game's RRP?
Outlast is available on most platforms as a single game for around £15.99 ($19.99) or as a double pack, with it’s DLC named Whistleblower, in the Outlast: Bundle of Terror. Which is usually available for around £19.99 ($24.99).
What do you think of Outlast?
When people speak of hardcore horror games and especially the survival horror genre, there is a game that will be upon many a player’s lips first. A game some have attempted to brave but found too much and quit - never to return to. And a game that those who have braved through to its conclusion will ensure they are never afraid of horror games again. For playing Outlast changes something in you the more, you play. The things you witness. The skills you develop. The sheer terror it inflicts on your sanity and tolerance for fear.
As you may be able to tell from the trailer above and a description of the game, Outlast does not hold your hand nor pull any punches. It comes at you full speed with cannibalism. Torture scenes in which you witness your own character be mutilated, unable to fight back. And not to mention the other atrocities carried out in the asylum. You are literally playing a role straight from the best horror films out there. And yet as I admittedly wonder what is wrong with me as I type this, I loved it. The game terrified me to the point I whimpered, swore and screamed at jump scares. I cursed those patients chasing me. And I cringed when I was held down and had my fingers chopped off of both hands.
Although the game is getting on a bit now, it still looks beautiful. It has a fantastic way of setting an atmosphere with the way it mixes light, background noise and map layouts to leave you feeling defenceless and disorientated throughout. Not to mention the macabre story and how it unfolds not only through the events you witness, but via the various recordings and written reports, you find throughout the game’s world. If I had to pick any faults with the game, I would say at times it is quite tough to find your way to your next objective, with little to no help, adding to the tension. And for some players, it may be too much as it gets exceptionally graphic in places. But even as someone who started out as not that much of a horror game fan. I found myself been lured in and loved the game thoroughly even though I wanted to quit so many times throughout the playthrough on stream.
Overall I could not recommend Outlast highly enough. There were a few very minor issues at times as I said along with some rare oddities with controls not responding until you were in some very (frustratingly) specific spots. And some puzzles felt a bit too similar. But if you are looking for a genuine challenge and do not mind an intense delve into the horror genre - I would recommend giving the game a go if you have not done so already.
What overall rating would you give Outlast?
Specific function(s): Puzzle Elements 🍌🍌🍌🍌
I would rate Outlast as a solid 4.6 out of 5 bananas.
Outlast throws you into your very own survival horror film in which you must outsmart, outmanoeuvre and survive many a terror. With an artistic mix of background noise, musical scores, map design and gameplay mechanics - Outlast genuinely is one of the ruling titles in the survival horror franchise that has to be survived to be believed.
Thank you very much for checking out the review. I hope you enjoyed it. Admittedly, everyone has a different opinion, and all I can do is encourage you to try out this game for yourself and see what you think. For now, though, have a fantastic day and happy gaming whatever you decide to play.