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Among the Sleep is a really clever take on the first person horror genre. I don't know how they came up with this idea, but I'm glad they did, because it worked really well, from the story, the atmosphere, all the way through, you can tell the hard work that went into getting this idea to its final form.
There's plenty to admire in Krillbite's debut but, like a child itself, it's messy, loud, confusing and it grows up far too quickly. The length is the key isssue. For all its efforts to get inside both the player and the characters' heads, Among The Sleep doesn't linger long enough to leave a mark or more than a fleeting memory.
Where it starts off on a high, the short story, lack of depth, and occasional bug all comes together to make for a slightly numbing experience; it feels like there's no journey, no resolution, and a lot of unfulfilled potential.
Among the Sleep wants to be a combination of Gone Home and Slender, but doesn't quite reach the emotional and storytelling highs of the former or the bowel-rending scares of the latter. Krillbite have done some fine design work, though, and the core idea is new and unique enough to give the promise of greatness to come from the new studio.
Among the Sleep is one of the better horror titles I've come across in recent memory. It's unique take doesn't take away any of the scares, and the plot doesn't overstay it's welcome and creates a collection of memorable scenarios. The same can't be said for the presentation, which is the one urgent issue of fixing.
Despite the great storytelling mechanics, I can't help but wish there was a little more to the game. When all was said and done it wrapped up in a handful of hours at most and I was left craving more. It's especially a let down because the game invents such new ways of thinking about the horror genre, and it left so much to be expanded on. However, I honestly have to applaud the team for delivering a concise and complete story in that amount of time, and one that is so unique to the horror realm at that.
Besides those two larger complaints, Among the Sleep was a fascinating experience. The concept is one that has rarely (if ever) been seen before, and it really lets you look at the world from a different perspective as well as creating a real sense of vulnerability. It's a rarity but Among the Sleep is even a game that could be recommended even to people who aren't necessarily huge fans of the horror genre. Despite this, Among the Sleep starts out pretty tame but ramps up the horror as it progresses so it should also leave ardent horror fans sated. Just make sure you play it late at night in the dark with noise canceling headphones for full effect; you'll thank me later.
The deaths that occur will lengthen your playtime, but I would guess everyone should be able to beat the game in about two to three hours, which leads us back to my opening thoughts. I really enjoyed the way the development team leveraged our toddler as a protagonist. It is a unique twist that works very well within the environment designs and plays with the notion that children really have very little understanding of their world or an ability to protect themselves, making the world a big and scary place. If anything the task is handled so well the majority of the time that I wish there was more of it, but what is here makes for a solid horror experience.
Among the Sleep recreates a world between dream and reality, seen by a 2-year-old baby. It is intriguing and disturbing and tells an interesting story. However, it has some technical problems that can annoy some players.
Review in Italian | Read full review
Among the Sleep is a horror experience that's more interested in delivering on its premise of exploring traumatic events from the perspective of a two-year old than in shocking you with gore or employing jump scares in order to get a cheap reaction out of you, which is good.
Among the Sleep puts the player behind the eyes of a two-year old and tasks them with surviving a series of wildly traumatizing scenarios. Careful hands and compassionate minds push Among the Sleep's delicate subject matter away from abject immorality, however, not with enough guidance to pivot an honest story into a capable game.
Krillbite Studios' baby sim-cum-horror tale starts strong, but comes undone as it pushes into the supernatural at the expense of the real. It's often scary, but not always effective.
Among the Sleep is ultimately a cool experience worth seeing through to the end. There's a novelty to the perspective that's hard to deny, and when the game focuses on that it's great. If you enjoy a brisk, atmospheric journey from a fresh perspective, Among the Sleep is a solid choice.
Among the Sleep is a very short experience that thrives on its ability to craft an interesting narrative while not needing to burden the scenario with words. Like a piece of art, Among the Sleep should be examined and thought about.
Among the Sleep features a very interesting story with a great plot twist, but it fails to deliver a good quality survival horror game. The duration is too short for this kind of story and it does not reach a good level of fear for a horror game.
Review in Spanish | Read full review
With a bit more time and cash or just a more solid plan of how to make their creatures scary Krillbite could eventually make the greatest survival horror ever (remember it took Frictional three Penumbras before they made Amnesia), but Among The Sleep is not that game. Waaaaaaaah.
Among the Sleep would be a good buy at $9.99 or under. As it stands now, $14.99 is a bit too steep a price to ask for a game that is very short, and not particularly emotionally investing. A game that deals with alcoholic parents is supposed to get you to care about all the people affected by one person's addiction, but Among the Sleep ignores that, instead opting to be yet another game where you're defenseless against the enemy and must run and high whenever you're found. Between the average presentation, short play time, and predictable story, Among the Sleep is a game best purchased on sale, and is, perhaps ironically, only recommended for horror game junkies.
Cute, and sometimes unnerving, Among the Sleep draws the player to an affecting conclusion, but its banal puzzles and shallow storytelling doesn't do a lot to inspire many thrills.
Among The Sleep was a bit of a letdown on the horror front, but if you're looking for an interesting interactive story, you should definitely give it a shot. The immersion mechanics were great and they managed to make you feel powerless, if only for a brief period. It would've been nice to see some more realistic environments and subtle scare tactics and, if these were added, it would've been a fantastic game, rather than just a good one.
An interesting take on the survival horror / puzzle game, but lacking in areas that would set it apart from its peers. The dark twist in the plot may upset some players.
After waiting more than a year to get my hands on it, I was quite excited to finally play through Among the Sleep. However, that excitement didn't end up paying off. Although it's not a bad game, per se, this is unfortunately a rather slow, predictable, ho-hum and sluggish horror game, which prefers fetch quests over interesting and involved gameplay.
Among the Sleep has some incredible ideas, but its execution is simply not strong enough to stir you from your slumber. The game squanders its impressive opening by spending too much time in generic environments, and the puzzles lack the imagination needed to keep you awake. The narrative goes to some nightmarish places, but it ends all too abruptly, and technical issues apply the sleeping cap to an already mixed release.
It's a shame that a mechanic as promising as playing as a toddler — and all the repercussions surrounding it — is underplayed here, as tied in with a psychological leaning in horror, Among the Sleep could have offered a fresh take in what is a painstakingly underused concept in games. [Hardcore Gamer separately reviewed the PS4 (2.5) and PC (2.0) versions. Their scores have been averaged.]
That's what's most disappointing; there's absolutely the spark of a really cool whatever-this-genre-is game in Among the Sleep, and for a while it looks like it's going to get there. Too bad it ends barely a quarter of the way in, passing the baton to something both much less interesting and perpetually trapped in its shadow.