Thursday, September 13, 2012

Game Review! SCP-087

     Alright, I need to get off of this horror-game fix or something; this is getting ridiculous. So, I won't do any more scary games after this, I promise. I don't know why I've suddenly become obsessed with the horror genre, but this will probably be my last one so...

     A couple of posts ago I talked about SLENDER, the indie horror sensation that's sweeping the nation! SLENDER is a terrifying game experience, but I've decided to pull up a game that I believe very few people will know about.

     SCP-087 is an experimental horror game developed by someone who is known only as haversine. The game is based off of the SCP Foundation, a website devoted to the documentation of fake scary things. The Foundation is a huge universe, and you can find thousands of entries, but few have such fame as 087. SCP-087 tells the story of a staircase in a university where mysterious things happen. Basically, people who enter 087 hear pleading cries from a child (which is mysteriously absent from the game adaptation), so they descend the staircase. However, the staircase doesn't seem to have an end, and by the time they realize this, they come fact to face with SCP-087-1, the entity who lives in the stairwell. Wanna get the full story? Click here!

     SCP-087 (the game) places you in the shoes of someone who has entered the stairwell. Why? Who cares. You're not getting out of there anyway. The game begins with a bang- literally. The door slams behind you and you are left to your own devices in SCP-087. So what do you do? You go down, of course. I'm going to point out here that, to the common bystander, SCP-087 looks like the most boring, pointless game in the history of humanity. "All you do is go down stairs!" they will say. "That's stupid!" But, it's not. It's really scary.

     The game's real kicker is it's audio. I advise using a plethora of headphones (how that would work, I don't care) when playing, because to get this game's full effect, you need to hear it. As you descend, you will hear breathing. Is it your own breathing? I sure hope not, because if so, you might be Darth Vader. Also, there will be a semi-permeable layer of white noise that increases in volume as you go down. This may not seem like much, but it makes every step sound like 087-1 is getting closer. These aren't all the sounds you'll hear, however, as SCP-087 seems to have an infinite supply of scary noises to throw at you, ever time I play it throws something new at me! There could be a body being thrown down the stairs, or some new moan to hear. It's petrifying.

     Another specific kicker in there is... the shadows. Occasionally, as you descend the stairwell, you'll encounter a shadow that appears and then disappears. At first, you think it could be you; but you're not that tall, and your arms aren't that long... oh crud. The shadows appear at random, and they're terrifying, because, unlike what I'm about to get to, you never see them coming. And this leads me to the final element of horror in this game. SCP-087-1.

     Of course you eventually encounter the... thing that lives in the staircase. But, here's our third kicker, you don't know when you're going to encounter him. Although there seems to be an infinite amount of stairs, 087-1 will spawn on a random (but not too far down, the most we've gotten is 117) floor. And you'll know when you get to him, because you'll see his face (see ex. a).

Look very closely, enlarge this if you must. He's there.
      087-1 will simply stand down there and wait for you, because where else are you going to go? He won't chase you, he won't do anything. He'll just wait. And you'll go right on down. Once you get close enough, he'll reach out with his ridiculously creepy hands, grab you, and the application will close. The end? Your screams will probably signify that. You actually can get past 087-1, but it isn't easy. You'll have to jump on the railings and onto the other stairwell, and even then it's possible he'll appear on the next flight. There's no way to beat the game, just a high score to get.

     So... how to rate this? Like I mentioned in my SLENDER review, experimental games can't be held up to a scale, to say, but I do think that I can rate this game based off the amount of fear coursing through my veins as I played it, and that's an


     SCP-087 is not the scariest game out there, but the scares it delivers are completely terrifying in their subtlety. If you want a drop out of your pants and die scare, try it's sister game, SCP-087-B. You might literally die. However, for the simplicity of this game, it's brilliantly terrifying. I would advise playing. With friends. In the dark. In a closet (shoutout to Will and Joe). 

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