first_img <> <> There is a catch, however. While you may snap your fingers or whistle to see the world, monsters and demons can hear you too. If you spot a particularly horrifying creature, you might gasp or screech, but both could well get you killed.Coaching myself to remain agonizingly still — no matter what I saw — was exhausting, but it felt like a wholly new way to play a horror game. I felt that the game’s creators were testing me, coaxing me into killing myself by making a noise.That’s challenging enough when playing some games, but mix in the VR element and the fact that I could give any of the classic scream queens a run for their money, and I had one of the most terrifying and stressful experiences of my life.I only ran into two small problems during my 20-minute show floor demo. The first, as you might already be able to guess, is that I was playing while surrounded by hundreds of onlookers at PAX. Not exactly ideal for a game based on being very, very quite. But, to the developers’ credit, they had rigged up a noise canceling microphone array that helped quite a bit.My second issue though was a bit more insidious. Right now Stifled has you moving through the environment with a controller (i.e. push the analogue stick forward to move). That’s all well and good for your garden variety 3D games, but if you’re in VR that’s a good recipe for motion sickness. After my demo, I could see myself getting just a bit queasy, but my stomach is usually trigger happy so all things considered that wasn’t too bad either. VR is good at a lot of things — especially horror. It’s one thing to step loosely into another world, or view the terrifying through a metaphoric window, comfortable in your living room or the theatre. It’s quite another to trick the brain into thinking that you’re projecting yourself into the path of danger.Stifled plays off that, and takes it a step further — the sounds you make, especially your screams, have an effect on the game’s world. At first, everything is cloaked in unyielding blackness. But in a few moments you learn that any sounds you make — that is in the real world — flow out from you in waves. These waves curl around rocks and through trees showing you the game’s environments. You navigate the game’s world with what is, essentially, sonar. Stifled is due out sometime in 2017, so if you’ve got a VR set, iron stomach, and a love of all things terrifying, keep an eye out.last_img

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