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With series like Resident Evil and Silent Hill either turning into action of falling off the map, the future on true survival horror seemed bleak for the longest time. However, after successfully releasing Penumbra: Overture, Frictional Games decided to take another crack at survival horror with Amnesia: The Dark Descent.
Both survival and horror are very dominant themes in Amnesia: The Dark Descent; the player does not get any weapons and there is very little light to use. In addition, the player takes on the role of a protagonist that suffers from both real and imaginary threats that can harm him. Without any combat, it makes for true survival horror.
Interestingly, players need to maintain Daniel's sanity as well as his health. Staring at monsters or being in the dark will cause his sanity meter to drop, but seeing undisturbed light will help raise it back up again.
Patient players will find most of the ghouls easy to avoid since hiding and waiting suffices for most threats. However, there are some monsters that cannot be defeated in this manner, which means Daniel needs to stealthily escape the area. This does mean having to avoid light and therefore sacrificing some sanity, which can make it a bit of a challenge for players who are not very patient or who cannot figure out the way.
Overall, fans of Amnesia: The Dark Descent agree that the premise is excellent, the controls function smoothly and the horror of having to survive threats both real and imaginary is something that resonates with fans very well. At the moment, those interested in playing Amnesia: The Dark Descent may only do so on the PC, though it is available on Windows, Mac and Linux; there are currently no plans to bring it out to the console either.