We briefly touched upon The Inpatient VR in our review of the best horror games of 2018, but we enjoyed it so much that we feel it warrants its own review. So, here is a rundown of what you can expect if you purchase this survival horror game. Enjoy our The Inpatient VR review.
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The Inpatient VR review – The Story
Developer: Supermassive Games
Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Platform: PlayStation 4, PlayStation VR
The Inpatient VR is a psychological survival horror game released in 2018. It is a prequel to the 2015 game, Until Dawn, and it plays from the perspective of a patient at Blackwood Sanatorium.
The game begins with the protagonist waking up restrained in a wheelchair face-to-face with the intensely unnerving Dr Bragg, who is the owner of the Blackwood establishment. The character you play has no recollection of their past and struggles when trying to maintain a dialogue with the doctor about details of their memory.
Following this, you are transported back to your room thoroughly confused and with more questions unanswered than answered. Here, you get to become acquainted with your roommate, staff members, and daily routine. You can also search the room looking for clues that will aid you throughout the game.
This all comes to a halt, though, when the nurse doesn’t arrive for her daily visit one day and you are met with some rather horrifying screams and cries that appear to be coming from deep within the Blackwood Sanitorium. Without giving too much away, players of Until Dawn may be able to recognize the perpetrators of said noises.
When you finally get to leave your room and venture out into the asylum, The Inpatient then takes on more of a generic survival horror style gameplay, in which you wander around dimly lit corridors slaloming through numerous obstacles. From here on in, the game intensifies at a rapid pace, culminating in a truly spine-chilling finale that will probably stay with you for a while after completion.
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The Inpatient VR – Gameplay
The gameplay is a familiar for those who have played a Supermassive Games title before. The game is essentially a cinematic experience in which the player makes choices throughout the game that will have a measured impact on the outcome of the game.
The virtual reality aspect of the game increases the immersion of the experience greatly. When you are faced with questions and dialogue choices in a virtual reality first-person perspective, you can really start to believe you are in a virtual world. This is enhanced further by the option to activate voice recognition, whereby you can simply vocalise the dialogue option you wish to choose, and the game will automatically select the option for you.
The game is played with two PlayStation Move controllers that allow you to use the onscreen hands as if they were your own. This is a cool aspect of VR gaming that adds to the realistic value of any game and can make horror games just that little bit more chilling.
The visuals are smooth, and the audio is distressingly atmospheric. The game does a good job of creating tense environments for the player that can mess with sanity levels and leave you feeling both edgy and thoroughly focused, the perfect combination for an optimal horror experience.
It should be noted that those looking for a horror title heavily-laden with jumpscares may be left unfulfilled. This game uses them sparingly and instead takes a focus on a more psychological aspect of horror. I, for one, am completely for this approach.
The Inpatient VR– The Good
A theme that is prevalent throughout the whole game is the deteriorating mental state of the protagonist as the game progresses. This portrayal of progressive insanity and mental deliriousness is both poignant and well executed.
Supermassive Games are one of the best developers for providing immersive video game experiences, which is largely down to their heavily choice-driven storytelling. Yet, this immersion is increased tenfold when transposed to a virtual reality experience. on that the game provides is aided by, the impact of your decisions.
A final plus in this The Inpatient VR review is that the game has great replay value. Indeed, it should do when the main story takes only around two hours to complete. The impact of your decisions really seem to affect the outcome of the ending in this survival horror game and, as such, means you can return to the game multiple times to see how each decision pans out in the end.
The Inpatient VR – The Bad
Although I fully enjoyed this survival horror experience, I can also see how the game attracted a fair amount of criticism after its release, and there are many who will not agree with the tone of this The Inpatient VR review.
Perhaps the most obvious downside to the game is the story length. It can certainly feel like a disservice to the buyer when you can complete the entire game in around two hours. This is slightly mitigated by the high potential for replays, but I still think the game could have been made into a longer experience by the developers.
Other users have reported problems with clunky controls and a voice command system that doesn’t function properly. I, personally, didn’t experience any of these technical difficulties whilst playing the game, but the complaints from other gamers have been frequent enough to make them worth mentioning.
Games Like The Inpatient VR
If you enjoyed this title and are looking for something similar, don’t worry, there are plenty of titles out there. Here are some games like The Inpatient VR that you might enjoy.
- Until Dawn: Rush of Blood
- Resident Evil 7: Biohazard VR
- Here They Lie
- Layers of Fear: Solitude.
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