Supermassive’s latest choose-your-own-adventure horror epic The Quarry has touched down, revelling players in a gruesomely gripping and itchingly intense freakfest that will surely delight fans of The Dark Pictures Anthology. Here are my personal impressions of The Quarry (you can find our review here), so go grab a bag of your Peanut Butter Butterpops and settle in.
To start I must say I have conflicting feelings about The Quarry. I think it’s a gripping horror adventure with many different and varied outcomes, it’s impressive how events can play out. On top of this, it’s easy to appreciate how damn hard Supermassive have worked making this game work so very well with all it has going on in it. I do also have a fondness for big cinematic adventure games where you make choices that alter the outcomes – very few frustrations come with these kinds of games and The Quarry is no exception.
Now I’ve got scratch all the niggling fleas out of my scraggly neck-long blonde hair. I don’t really know where to start, so I’ll just dive into the deep end like some of the characters do during the experience.
Firstly, I don’t know if any game has summoned such a detestable cast of idiotic teenaged morons. Seriously, I want to sucker punch these ingrates and pinch their youthful ballsacks with pliers so tight and hard you wouldn’t even want to know the aftermath. Not only do I have a hard time listening to these wisecracking and cliche-cussing nimrods, but they look hideous.
Yahtzee said it best when he described one of the female characters by saying “the stocky sexy girl character in particular looks like she’s trying to talk through a bagel that has been hot-glued to her face,” they simply look like they’ve been scuba diving below the uncanny valley sea level too far down and for too long.
Now, these characters couldn’t look any worse than Quantic Dream’s efforts in Detroit: Become Human, but considering that game shares several similarities with The Quarry – let’s just say they both wanted cinematic lusciousness at the expense of the traditional videogame playing we all, y’know, play games for.
I think one of the major problems The Quarry has is that it’s unable to make the characters interesting from the start, so you get roped into a ten hour trek through teenage hell and it becomes really hard to care about what happens to anybody. All the characters are generally stereotypes of what teenagers these days are. You got the social media obsessive, the obnoxious showoff douchebag, the alternative one and the dependable if sporty frat boy type. They could’ve put in the self-harming goth type and a nerdy bookworm type and it’d be a complete cast of angsty, insecure and smelly body odor reeking rejects and dumb plums.
I know I should be thankful that Supermassive gave us the ability to deliver disturbing deaths to each of these turnip twisters, but I’ve had to listen to them for too long to inject my serum of prolonged patience into my right bicep.
Another biting realization I’ve had is that generally The Quarry is largely the same experience structurally as their other efforts. I loved Until Dawn, but after seven years and three Dark Pictures Anthology games and now The Quarry, there’s no evolution to the formula. You enter a horror adventure with a mixture of stereotypes, survive incurring dangers, all the while you collect glimpses of possibilities, clues and evidence; you have to follow quick-time events, and a minigame where you need to hold your breath to avoid danger, oh and along the way you make decisions and proceed with actions that can cause the death of cast members and alter the endings you get.
As stated, these games must be painstaking to put together, but they are the same formulaic games we’ve been playing for years now, and they’re only getting bigger now, not better.
Generally, right now I can say that I like The Quarry but nothing about it surprises me or makes me feel differently from all these Dark Pictures games. There is ample replay value, but when you see that all it offers is multiple endings and scenes which will shift the story along-it will seem like plenty of hard work for quite sub-standard rewards. There needs to be more ambition and a change of genre to freshen things up, but what we have with The Quarry is a good game that’s just not evolving what we’ve come to know at all.Become a Patron!