I came across this game while randomly searching across GD. Back then (as in a couple of years ago), i had a 2nd Gen Core i3 with an integrated Intel HD 3000 graphics chipset. so naturally you can imagine that I had a a limited selection of games that i could play.
I came across this game accidentally, and honestly, didn't pay much heed to it. i merely chalked it up as something to look up and forgot about it. Then much later, i installed the game.
To my surprise, the game was surprisingly smooth and optimized even for such an old rig. The game's eerie environment was, well, eerie. The mix of dark shadows, burnt/ruined buildings, ominous clouds reminded me of Resident Evil, the caution every gamer employs when scouting the unknown, decrepit locations. Among my most favourite moments occurs when you receive your first weapon. The game firmly establishes its mystique and thrill in that abandoned house with the dead bodies, weird sounds, decorated with dried up blood, claw marks and the desperate notes of a father trying to save his family from something horrifying. the peaks when u hear a bounce from the left, and another, and as you turn, you see an inflated ball bouncing down the stairs. And remember, You are unarmed.
The game paces back and forth with thriller like feel, sometimes chasing you through streets, other times lurking about the corners. The game itself is an FPS, which i prefer for horror, gives a more attached danger to the game. Through various points in the game, you transition between the past and present. The transition itself is done marvelously. It isnt like the one in Back to the Future. its more weird, more frantic and same time, more stalker-like, it slowly approaches you, you see it coming and it rarely comes at an opportune time.
The enemies in this game are quite good. You have your typical enemy military but also some radiated freakshows. Its these freaks that are more interesting. These are beings are of variety and can be particularly nasty (looking at you blue ghost freak). While the AI isnt like Dark Souls, they are no Original Trilogy Storm Troopers either. A fair enough challenge given you chose a higher difficulty. The weaponry is also quite nice, variable and customizable. Plus given the AI, you should use a different weapons for different enemies.
Some nitpickers will argue that the story is too linear and that its too predictable. Some will argue that the writing is bad. First off, dont listen to these people. I do not know anyone who goes into a video game and looks for Pulitzer prize winning writings, if you do, you dont deserve to play ANY video game. Its an insult to both, video games and books. Games are meant to be enjoyed for the experience, not merely discarded simply because the story didnt quite pan out as you had theorized. What makes this game good is that it delivers a an experience. You may know what is gonna happen at the end, none the less, you wish to see it through, you want to experience it to its conclusion.
Conclusively, I would definitely recommend this game to people. It is very underrated and deserves a much better fanbase. And its the perfect game for people who WANT to play horror games, but, for whatever reason, cannot play them. The horror element is less, more a horror/thriller hybrid