When Until Dawn first arrived on PS4 in 2015, I was superhyped to play it! Here was a game where one misclick would mean your character was dead and you couldn’t load again to a previous checkpoint. The choices you made and the QTE (quick time events) actually mattered. It changed the ending and your experience.
Well, Little Hope is again from the same developers’ Supermassive Games and this seems to be another great offering albeit its issues. It is another creepy atmospheric game that will jumpscare you, make you indulge in difficult choices, and in the end, those choices remain permanent until you start the next walkthrough.
Here are the great things that I loved about Little Hope.
Story – The story that follows multiple timelines is effective and delivers on a lot of cool horror elements. You see a lot of carnage caused due to one girl. A character simply named the Curator does try to help you in your decision making as you go along the game.
The introduction is a splendid way to jump in the game and the little clues and flashbacks (I am not sure what they are!) do add to great story-driven gameplay.
Characters – You interchange between your characters a lot and you have five characters unique in their own way with choices that you will make that binds all of their fates for better or worse.
You will dislike a few characters at the start, take a liking to certain others and straight-up loathe some choices made by a few (I really don’t like John!). But not once did I feel that the characters were one-dimensional or just straight up defined by one trait. They are fleshed out enough to enjoy playing as them.
That does really help in getting invested in their stories.
Replayability – There are a lot of endings to this game and I just finished one walkthrough and can’t wait to make different choices or completely turn the entire narrative topsy turvy in my next walkthrough.
I really love it when a game gives you multiple choices. It stokes the embers in me like a rekindled fire! I love it! I can be rash, abrasive, and rude or be polite, non-confrontational and a yes man and the game visually and structurally differs due to my actions. (There is one thing that does spoil the replayability at the end but I will mention that below!)
Horror Elements – There are many horror elements with many jumpscares as is expected from The Dark Pictures Anthology game. They have refined the scares to be effective and not be a monster jumping in your face every few minutes. The reveals are timed well, the graphics are beautiful which makes you notice the details in between scenes where some elements will be otherwise hidden.
The creepy atmosphere is the constant mood in this one-road ghost town and the different camera perspectives actually are damn effective when it comes to delivering good scares! Playings this at night with the lights off is quite the ideal way to dive in, unless you scare easy.
Different Perspectives in Co-op – Since you play as one of the five characters and keep switching as the game progresses, you can play co-op as well where you and your friend also keep switching characters. Co-op definitely adds a lot more fun to the experience as in certain parts, you and your friend can have entirely different scenarios to play through and find things that would otherwise be hidden from you unless you play again.
Now I should move on to the few things that I definitely feel made this game lag behind Until Dawn which I still consider as an overall superior horror game experience.
Length and Technical Glitches – The playtime of this game is just 4-5 hours and I definitely made sure I checked everything I could. This is a bit disappointing but not a deal-breaker. I would rather play an effectively delivered horror game than a ten plus hour walking simulator.
This brings me to another issue which made me a little less invested in the game. The glitches in the game, although not game-breaking, did hinder me from the experience. Characters would get stuck or stop moving as I tried to move them, other times I couldn’t lift objects or interact with certain elements in the game until I tried a few times. It was more of an annoyance that took me out of the atmospheric mood of the game.
Voice acting – This also according to me fell a little short. There were lines that weren’t delivered as per the expected emotion at that point in the game. Like in the middle of a chase, Taylor would just blurt out something that should have been out-of-breath and tense but instead ending up with a flirtatious ring to it that made me go like, “Whaaa?”. There are more of such issues and it only bugs me out because I noticed them.
The Replayability (I KNOW!) – This part contains mild spoilers so do not read this if you want your experience to be completely spoiler-free, whispers!
Spoiler start! ————-
The ending actually was plain lazy in my book. The story started off as an amazing mystery with unexplained elements that do make you feel that you are in for a great game but by the end, it fails to deliver upon that and gives you an ending that makes you feel a little jaded. This also affects replayability in a way that if you really are invested in the story, you may not see any point in playing through the game again knowing how the game ends. You still have multiple endings but all your characters are not as lucky to be in those endings (That’s like the least spoil-ery way to put it!)
Spoiler End! ————
All in all, I really loved a lot of aspects of Little Hope and it is worth playing just for the scares and the journey of these characters. It is not long and it still feels like they could have had a much better conclusion but that doesn’t take away from the atmosphere and tense gameplay that Supermassive games were trying to achieve.
I hope they do refine their technical aspects in the next game that is coming out in 2021 and have a better, impactful, and closely knitted ending to their story because they have everything else quite in their pocket.
You can check the game out at the link below!
Little Hope (Steam) – https://store.steampowered.com/app/1194630/The_Dark_Pictures_Anthology_Little_Hope/
Little Hope (PS4) –
Little Hope (Xbox) – https://www.microsoft.com/en-in/p/the-dark-pictures-anthology-little-hope/