Friday, 22 July 2016 21:24

Phantasmal: Evolving Terror and Mental Instability

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We were gifted a trash bag full of books when I was around 9 years old by some nice people who had no clue of the value in books. In it there was a Spanish book of ghost stories. I used to be terrified of this book but I loved reading it. Truly enjoyed it. Anyway, my mom reads the book for some reason and quickly proclaims the book to be that of satan. Even at that age, my brother and I thought “Mama, you’ve got to be fucking kidding me…” You have to understand that at the time my mom had a room full of statues and pictures depicting the ‘Virgin’ Mary. Yes, they were the type of parents who used to rub an egg on our bodies to cure us from everything. They’re not like that anymore, but, man, it was so much fun egging them on.

I screwed up by finding a book about witches and showing them just to gauge their reaction. Well, their reaction was to burn all the books they deemed satanic. I lost that wonderful book and, since then, I’ve been looking for things that terrify me at that level and Phantasmal is next on my radar.

Phantasmal: City of Darkness is here to take away from your sense of security. This is a terror experience that is never the same twice. Meaning that you won't be able to rely on your last experience to survive the next time you spawn. Exactly, you can’t memorize the map in order to remember what corners are to be avoided like neckbeards. You are in a place called Kowloon Walled City and it's where you will face off with horrific mutations. By the way, KWC was demolished in the early 90’s so maybe you can find some dope Mighty Max adventure sets. Keeping yourself alive will be essential to your survival, but so will your mental state. Your sanity will be pushed more than a high school band kid by the creatures that are trying to sniff (and snuff) you out. Could it be possible that the creatures don’t even exist? It could be the reason why each experience is different--the mind is an unending abyss of the thoughts that makes us the insecure creatures we are. The light that guides us will either be used to your benefit or just shorten your life. You can regain some sanity by using your light to look at certain objects that help your mind but your it can just help your enemies find you quicker. Add this game to the growing list of things where you end up finding yourself against the entirety of existence.

The environment in Phantasmal has been crafted by Brian Bell himself. You might be asking yourself who Brian Bell is. Well, it’s not the guy from Weezer, it’s the only Brian Bell who has been the acclaimed lighting lead of Riddick, Ring 2, and Life Of Pi. Look, I’ve only sort of seen Life of Pi in parts, but it did look good. It was very stressful when that kid was on that small boat with the tiger. Imagine that stress level while playing Phantasmal with the added fact you won’t just die, you’ll perma die. After you go insane while playing and end up dead in the game, you’re going to need to be physically admitted to a mental rehabilitation facility to gain your sanity (it’s never going to be the same). Then, you’ll eventually muster up the courage to come back and risk everything to give Phantasmal another try. Then you’ll find out that you can’t-- that alone will send you on a downward spiral again.

At least you get to keep any money you made and use it to upgrade your stats. Thanks, a lot. Check out the trailer and decide if it’s worth everything you are:

Published in /Gaming
Murray Coons

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