The bigger issue is that Outlast accomplishes far more as an experience than it does as a game. That would be fine, but it tries to be a game more often than its stealth mechanics and AI could bear. Is it scary? For sure. But it's also capable of falling apart completely, deflating its own scare tactics, and leaving you wondering why Miles Upsher can't throw a single punch.
Outlast is scary and will make you feel fear. It doesn't do much more than that, but if horror is what you're looking for, you won't do much better than this.
Over the course of this review it became clear to me that unlike the majority of video games, Outlast is in no way designed to be fun. For me at least, it was an ordeal, something I felt compelled to go through but I had no idea why. It is oppressive and morbid, maniipulating common fears of imprisonment, isolation and madness. From the moment you step out of your car at the beginning you will yearn to get back in it and scramble away to safety. I guess at least that's the very aim of horror. Outlast is memorable and gripping, but Outlast is also guilty of being a one-trick pony with little to offer beneath its terrifying surface. Once you've blasted through it once there really is no need to revisit it, the curtain's been pulled back and the puppeteers at work are laid bare for all to see.
Outlast made a splash when it first came to PC and became a favorite among scare cam Twitch streamers and YouTubers, and it will no doubt see a resurgence thanks the PS4's streaming capabilities. The reason Outlast was such a phenomenon is due to its great sense of atmosphere and tense gameplay, all of which is all present in the PlayStation 4 version.
There's actually some fun in traversing the asylum with friends around, or by streaming it online via the PlayStation 4's many sharing options. Plus, there's a decent enough mystery at the core of Outlast, and uncovering it bit by bit can be enjoyable if you're able to get invested. There's just not enough engaging material to keep you from getting bored after a few hours. There's plenty of room in the survival horror market for someone to come along and really revitalize the genre. Outlast just isn't that game.
The terrifying debut of Red Barrels is a masterclass in the art of video game horror that is stretched a little thin
Outlast is not the most satisfying horror experience around, but it had my heart thumping and my head throbbing enough to make it a worthwhile trip.
Outlast loses momentum occasionally, but its unsettling atmosphere and pulse-pounding chases keep pulling you along for the ride.
Repetition and overfamiliarity are always the best ways to nullify fear, but until they set in this is one of the most effectively scary video games ever made.
Outlast has elements that are genuinely frightening, but they yield to predictability, and predictability leads to tedium.
Red Barrels' Outlast is a solid indie title, which provides tension and scares in equal abundance. And while it lacks the sort of story depth a lot of us have become accustomed to, there is still a plethora of terrifying fun to be had. Get it on PlayStation Plus as soon as you can.
If you love getting scared, Outlast provides you with an enjoyable weekend; if you don't, your weekend is better spent elsewhere
More intelligent enemies and less eye-rolling predictability would have made this one of my favourite videogame horror experiences.
"You can only run or hide."
Review in Finnish | Read full review
Outlast is terrifying no matter what platform you play it on. Tense, punchy, jumpy and beautifully-paced, Red Barrels' debut is one of the most effective horror games of recent years.
An intense survival horror experience from start to finish.
Let it be known that Outlast is a genuinely stressful and nerve-racking experience, but that's exactly what a true survival horror game should be, and we wouldn't have it any other way.
I applaud Red Barrels for embracing the origins of survival horror in a time when horror games in general have become synonymous with high action. The emphasis on running and hiding over standing your ground and fighting adds to the constant sense of dread. While I would have preferred some amount of defensive abilities, the overall experience was frightening, disturbing, and incredibly tense. 'Outlast' is not a game for everyone, and I believe even horror aficionados will be affected by the images and gameplay.
Outlast is flawed in many ways, but it's the most exemplary offering these days of how to engage, entrap, and entice players looking for something that scares them out of their wits.
As a huge horror aficionado, it’s great to see that the horror genre is making more of a comeback in recent years.