I have come to the conclusion that Horrors favourite letter is D. The Dark Descent. Doorways, DreadOut, Daylight, and now we have Damned, the most recent in the line of D titled horror games.
Damned is a five player game in which the players have to try and escape the level, searching for keys, codes and other items to help them to success. But one player is the monster. That's right, you can be that little bugger that wants to eat all the helpless humans for lunch.
I entered the game with high expectations. After looking at the trailer and reading a bit about it, I was sold already. Horror game? Check. Atmospheric? Yep. Scare the feces I loaded up the game and found I needed an account. I made one with haste and quickly joined a session.
This is when the smile on my face dropped a good inch. A key hadn't spawned, locking all survivors in a room. Not only that, but the monster was glitched into a table and was constantly looking at us all quite comically. I quit the server and joined another. This time it forgot to make someone the monster, meaning we just glided through the level freely.
Point is: this game is early in its development. Very early. Bugs are common and you're most likely to find one every two matches you play. Once I was aware of this fact, I decided to make my own server, and I kid you not, I was waiting around twenty minutes before I had a full server of five players.
I was a human, as I had set it to randomise all players. I wandered around a bit and after about one minute was killed from behind. How fun. I quit and joined another lobby, and decided to become the monster. What followed was twenty minutes of me wandering around having NO idea what to do.
Damned is a difficult game to learn. It gives no guidelines and offers no hand-holding. You need to watch and learn a lot to have a single clue what to do, and your first few matches will be getting killed or stalking behind another player in hopes that they know what they are doing. But if you're the monster, you're on your own.
However, once you know what you are doing, Damned is very enjoyable. When you learn the ins and outs of how to dodge the monster and how to play the monster well, it becomes a very enjoyable game to play and you will find yourself saying 'just one more match.' Every time.
However, it lacks something most horror games kinda need: Horror. It has dread, yes, but not pure horror. The main cause of this is actually because of the way the game wants you to play it. The flashlight runs out of battery fast, meaning you can only really use it when you are looking for things such as keys. Also as the monster, you move slower than the survivors do, meaning you can just rush at them, you have to take them from behind. So if the monster gets you, in most cases he is either behind you or your flashlight was off, meaning you don't actually see him anyway.
Many faults with Damned are just small technical ones that are still getting jiggled round to fix, such as the lack of players or ‘horror’. I entered with high expectations, and, after a rocky road, left satisfied. Is it scary? Honestly, no. But is it fun? Hella yes. With the nice amount of levels and the random placement of both items and spawn points, this makes for a game that, despite requiring a lot of work, has a pretty long length to it and it is definitely worth keeping an eye on it.