After watching the trailer for Amnesia: Collection I was surprised how much the guy jumps playing this game.
Now I’ve gotten stuck into the 3 games available, I totally understand the reaction.
Though playing it handheld in a waiting room is undoubtedly a mad way to take in this experience.
Playing docked is definitely the safer way, which will stop you launching the console across the room when there’s a jump scare and your survival instincts kick in.
Amnesia: Collection is a tense puzzler that has been released on Switch despite the fact The Dark Descent was first released nearly 10 years ago by Frictional Games.
The games on offer in Amnesia: Collection are The Dark Descent, its DLC expansion Justine and the sequel A Machine For Pigs.
Each story plays out differently and follows 3 separate characters with a dark story to follow and discover.
The creep factor is high and the scares can be tense and drawn out to get the biggest reaction.
Three Games in One
In Dark Descent you follow Daniel who has lost his memory but is following notes left to guide him.
Upon finding the first note written seemingly by himself he is instructed to find the Inner Sanctum and kill Alexander; the Baron, whilst also mentioning that he is hunted by a shadow.
Justine puts you in the shoes of a female character who is stuck in a psychological test, wherein she must solve puzzles to rescue several characters.
The characters are supposedly innocent and as you explore you are fed information through scattered phonographs.
I cannot even begin to describe why this strange fish baby is puking water on some strangely alluring legs…
I’ll be honest on my first playthrough these guys weren’t lucky enough to survive, as I clumsily failed the puzzles put before me.
Sorry guys, better luck next time.
Machine of Pigs was for me by far the creepiest in the Amnesia: Collection, as you explore your home looking for your children, whilst you hear their voices and laughs, even glimpsing them as you roam the halls.
Essentially my worst nightmare; not losing my kids (that I don’t have anyway), but ghost children. Easily the worst kind of ghost and child.
Burn the painting/mirror and move on! Maybe the whole house just to be safe.
You play as Oswald Mandus, who whilst searching for his children Edwin and Enoch receives calls form a man known as the Engineer giving you directives on how to find them, this is where the Manpigs come in.
Yes, I said Manpigs. Not quite ManBearPig, but close enough to be terrifying in a similar way to the Doctor Who henchmen from Daleks in Manhattan.
The controls are easy to get used to and being able to pick up a myriad of items just to throw them has a novelty that doesn’t really wear off throughout the entire playthrough.
The psychological effects in Amnesia are well done even for an older game, with the screen moving and messing around with your vision to convey the characters emotional state as they explore the environment.
The role of light and dark is vital to your characters state of mind, with the dark being oppressive and detrimental to making your way around.
Health and safety would have a field day in this castle.
You have to really ration your lantern oil and tindrboxes used to light the various candles and sconces, though having the areas lighted is valuable to stop the visual effects from disorienting your character as you play.
Though the graphics are obviously dated, I didn’t really notice due to the atmosphere the game creates, that really puts you in to the shoes of the character.
The puzzles fit the story elements well and range from activating switches to having to read the notes and diaries attempting to work out the clues.
Do not get me started on the creatures. In Justine they talk to you whilst roaming, just looking for a chance to ruin your day with their unmoisturised bodies.
Just because their miserable, don’t take it out on me.
Compared to the creatures in Dark Descent and Justine, the Manpigs are quite adoptable.
Hiding from them is the only way to advance and luckily the darkness will help to hide you from their terrible vision.
The lack of weapons just emphasises the feeling of helplessness as you try to simply survive the encounter.
The feeling of needing to run put my in mind of the recent Mr X incarnation in the Resident Evil 2 remake or Resident Evil 3’s Nemesis.
A Quick Look at the Musical Score
It’s brilliant… The music is well used to create an ambiance befitting the locale, whilst also not relying on the score to impart the tone.
The visual effects pair greatly with the tracks used for differing encounters.
Amnesia: Collection delivers three differing stories that will creep you out at home or on the go.
The graphics aren’t great, but the atmosphere and gameplay options keep you on the edge of your seat throughout.
I wouldn’t recommend you play in a waiting room like the trailer, but at home alone or with friends to watch you ruin your underpants, it’s a good time.
- Stories are well paced
- Musical score is atmospheric
- Physical movement of items can be distractingly fun
- Makes you feel alive!
- Great value for money
- Graphically dated
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Lose your sanity docked or handheld!
- Overall - 8/108/10
Amnesia: Collection brings three good stories for a new generation to experience.
The gameplay is solid and the tone and setting sets a new benchmark for handheld horror.
You’ll get lost in the game world only for a jump scare to startle you… whilst the general public laugh at your misfortune.