The Inpatient (2018)
The Inpatient – Discover who you are before it’s too late in The Inpatient; a PSVR Exclusive set in the Blackwood Sanatorium, over 60 years prior to the 2016 BAFTA award-winning Until Dawn. With deep immersion that places YOU in the game, you take on the role of an amnesiac inpatient who must find out who you are and why you are in the Sanatorium. With a branching narrative and different endings; every choice you make can drastically affect the way the game plays out.
The Inpatient is a survival horror game played from a first-person perspective. The player controls a patient—whose gender is subject to choice—suffering from amnesia within the Blackwood Sanatorium, and intent on reclaiming their memories. The player character’s entire body is visible, should the player gaze down with the PlayStation VR headset. Non-player characters are caused to react via voice recognition. The outcome of the story is entirely consequent upon the decisions that are made.
It is set 60 years before the events of Until Dawn. In this game, you’ll get to explore the very haunting Blackwood Sanatorium and try to uncover the strange secrets there. Blackwood and its employees never feel comfortable to interact with. They leave a sense of unease after each conversation.
Unlike Until Dawn, The Inpatient gives you far less control over your movements and actions, but supplements this with a clever approach to voice interaction. The Inpatient also allows you to be able to use two control methods, the Dualshock 4 or the Move controllers, although I suggest using the Move controllers.
Much like the previous game you’re given the chance to make crucial story choices through responses in dialogue. Instead of just choosing options though, The Inpatient allows you to simply speak your lines through a headset microphone. It’s a feature that helps both personalize your experience and immerse you deeper into Blackwood’s tale. And it helps that it works pretty flawlessly too.
Basically, you just select your gender and skin tone, and you’re ready to go with your patient suffering from amnesia. From the moment you begin, you are given clues and opportunities and clarification about your past. The events that unfold during the game make for what is undoubtedly the most enjoyable, and meticulously crafted, horror experience on PSVR yet.
There are, however, noticeable issues with recognition from the camera. As with most PSVR titles, collision detection is a bit shitty and sometimes the camera lost one of my arms without much motion on my end, which led to my character doing some horrifying contortion. Not only does it look fantastic for a VR game, but it’s an audio-visual, psychological, sensory trip that always has you tensed up.
Some motion cues during my time with The Inpatient weren’t easily doable even after a few tries, but resetting your position usually fixes that. As a whole though, I found very little to complain about in terms of general gameplay, story, and execution. I really felt like I was a part of the world; not just a character, but an inhabitant. Pulling off that amount of immersion is very impressive. I hope you get this game and enjoy it as much as I have.
About the Game:
- Branching narrative Choices and consequences are integral to the gameplay. Your life (and the lives of those around you), are dramatically affected by the decisions you make.
- The story isn’t just about scares; you’ll discover a rich backstory and uncover a conspiracy.
- This game puts YOU in the shoes of the main character.
Title: The Inpatient
Genre: Survival Horror
Release Date: January 23, 2018
Developer: Supermassive Games
Game Engine: Unreal Engine 4
Platforms: PlayStation 4
Mode(s): Single Player
Reviewed by: Carl Collins
Our Rating: 3.6 /5
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