Although horror games haven’t been hard to find, it certainly feels like the genre has seen a major resurgence over the last few years. Thanks to games like Amnesia, Slenderman, and even P.T., the genre has thrived, to the point horror games are now a dime a dozen.
Case in point: there are two asymmetrical multiplayer games in development that use horror as their foundations. One, the successful Kickstarter-funded Friday the 13th Game will pit groups of players, as camp counselors, against a single, player-controlled Jason Voorhees, whose sole goal is to kill everyone.
The other less known project is called Dead by Daylight, and while it does bare some similarities to Friday the 13th’s concept, there are some wrinkles unique to the game as well. For example, Dead by Daylight gives the “attacking” player several options, from the generic slasher villain to the supernatural monster.
As readers can see in the developer diary above, Dead by Daylight wants to give both sets of players a unique gameplay experience. For the attacker, that experience hinges on power and speed, as players will be stuck in a first person view.
The survivors, as it were, will have greater mobility options, including traps and obstacles that can be used to hinder the attacker’s movement. Moreover, the survivors will see the game in third person, meaning they can peak behind corners and constantly check behind them. In essence, the attacker’s advantage is his or her pure strength, while the survivors can better see the environment and ideally keep their distance.
It’s worth noting, though, that Dead by Daylight doesn’t have the same type of asymmetrical approach that some other games, like Turtle Rock’s Evolve, have. Specifically, Dead by Daylight doesn’t require that the 4 players on the other side of the 1 vs. 4 versus line work together. If they so choose, these players can try and “set up” their fellow survivors in an effort to draw attention away. It’s in that detail that Dead by Daylight sounds the most different in terms of the gameplay.
Much like the horror genre seems to be all the rage right now, asymmetrical multiplayer also appears to be a major selling point for some upcoming games. Pitting a large-ish coordinated team against a single player is a unique concept, and when done well it can help the respective game standout. However, as we saw with Evolve, it’s a challenge to keep players invested in the 1 v 4 concept.
Perhaps combining asymmetrical multiplayer with horror will be the key to success, as both Friday the 13th and Dead by Daylight continue to build hype. We wouldn’t be surprised if more games appeared that riff on a similar concept.
Source: Dead by Daylight