Augmented reality and alternate reality gaming may not yet be the must-have gaming mechanics that proponents promised, but both certainly have potential in the future of gaming. Microsoft gave us some interesting tech demos for the Xbox One’s Kinect, particularly through the IllumiRoom and follow-up concept RoomAlive, and is still showing support for augmented reality through its HoloLens project. Meanwhile, Square Enix recently launched the Can’t Kill Progress ARG for the upcoming Deux Ex: Mankind Divided.
Now, the likes of Deus Ex and Portal 2 are set to be joined by another, terrifying addition to the world of augmented reality ARG gaming. Developer Novum Analytics is creating mobile survival horror title Night Terrors, a game with a particularly unnerving premise. Night Terrors is going to make the player’s location into the setting of the horror story in question, turning the user’s corridors and rooms into ghost-filled fright-fests.
Novum Analytics is planning to do this by utilizing the player’s mobile device, mapping out a gaming location through the use of the phone’s camera, screen, and flashlight. This will allow Night Terrors to recognize the house’s layout, giving plenty of nooks and crannies for ghouls to hide behind and taking players one step closer to a reality of the gameplay put forward in Fatal Frame. It’s an ingenious move and an impressive use of augmented reality mechanics, with Novum Analytics claiming that Night Terrors will be the “scariest” augmented reality mobile title of all time.
The developer has not only taken a leftfield approach when it comes to the game’s setting, as Night Terrors also adopts a unique graphical style. The game will not include traditional 3D modelling, with Novum Analytics instead choosing to use physical effects in an attempt to make the game’s monsters that much more believable with limited mobile hardware. Although the game’s story seems fairly rudimentary at the moment, with the player looking to save a girl trapped in the realm of dangerous ghosts, there looks to be enough interesting dynamics to make Night Terrors a truly terrifying experience.
Those excited about the prospect of these scares will have a while to wait, however, as there is still a way to go before the project is completed. Novum Analytics has given a release estimate of June 2016, with Night Terrors set to initially launch for iPhone. The developer is hoping to expand the devices Night Terrors will be available for, and is aiming to also release the game for Android and Windows Phone in future.
That 2016 release window is not set in stone, however, and the developer has taken to Indiegogo to help fund the project and keep development on track. Novum Analytics is asking for a further $70,000 in additional funding, with rewards including early access to the game’s beta testing this September. Let’s see what the future holds for this exciting project, and whether it can live up to the promise it currently shows.