People have been asking where I’ve been and why I haven’t been reviewing as of late; I’ve been busy and just feeling lazy. Survive the Night is more time-sensitive because it’s supposed to run until Halloween, so I thought I’d post some thoughts on it. Survive The Night is similar to an escape room, with the exception that it takes place in the pitch blackness of night inside an archery tag arena afterhours.
I had fun. The game was interesting and different. It has its downsides, but I don’t regret playing it. That’s the TL’DR version.
I played Survive the Night in its opening week. The premise is that you and your team are investigating a village where many of its inhabitants have disappeared from a curse. The game is virtually pitch black, with some exceptions. You’re given one lantern for every two people. I normally abhor being limited with lighting logistics, but in this case it actually feels necessary to maintain the atmosphere.
In my opinion, the best part of the game is the searching – Except its not searching anymore! In an escape room, searching for hidden keys or clues is tedious and irritating. In this huge space, nothing is hidden under rubble. In this game, searching is exploration! This is the best part of the game. You enter the pitch black playing area without knowledge of the space. How many buildings are there? Where do you need to go? Are there people you have to talk to? You have no idea! All the while playing with knowledge that there’s an number of cursed villagers roaming about trying to capture you.
In my opinion, the puzzles and general game design were the weakpoint to an otherwise fun game. There isn’t much direction in the game, and some of the ‘puzzles’ are things that most players would instantly recognize (perhaps to the point of knowing the answer before even finishing reading it). Still, the overall game was enjoyable.
I’ve never played at this archery tag facility, but I did get the impression that the standing structures in Survive the Night are fixtures of the archery tag games. I don’t know how mobile the structures are, but there can be plenty of potential for very interesting games (Can you imagine a Zombie mode where you have to ‘defend’ a structure while players are solving puzzles to acquire a cure?)
Anyways, if the points I gave appeal to you, try it out.