So for my review of a piece of independent media I’ve decided to choose the game ‘The Wendigo’, which was created by the steam user ‘Warka’. His steam profile can be found here and a link to his blog can be found here
About the game: “The Wendigo – is a first person investigation horror game set in a Victorian era mansion, located in the heart of a forest. You must rely on your instinct and intuition to survive the horrors that lie within. With tools to aid you, you will seek answers, but will you survive?”
A link to the game can be found here
The game currently goes for about $5 on steam.
Initial thoughts prior to playing: As a fan of the ‘Until Dawn’ game and as someone who loves the lore surrounding the Wendigo, the title alone was enough to have me intrigued. From reading the games biography I can assume the game might play similarly to ‘Parsec Productions’ ‘slender’ games, in that you must collect or find clues without being caught by the Wendigo. From viewing the trailer, the game looks really well made and seems to execute the anticipation style of horror games extremely well. For the developer who worked on this project by himself, it’s quite an achievement, obviously a lot of work and effort has gone into the making of this game. I’m excited to jump in and start playing!
I’d just like to add that horror games scare the hell out of me, so this should be an interesting experience.
‘The Wendigo’ certainly lives up to its expectation as a horror game and being created by a solo developer, it’s an impressive piece of work to say the least. The dark rooms and eerie setting create a scary atmosphere that keeps you on the edge of your seat and in anticipation the entire time.
The game is set in an old Victorian mansion, and although it was a rather small map it was nicely designed to create an interesting playing field. I really enjoyed some of the little elements added to the game, such as a position changing doll and the stormy weather/lightning. This made for a more scary setting and enhanced the overall experience.
The Wendigo lurks around the mansion and can become easily alerted if you’re not careful. At times you feel nervous attempting to follow him in case he turns around. Being defenceless also made being spotted a much more thrilling experience.
The only tools you have to your disposal in the game, being an EMF device and a flashlight, played a big role in the strategy of the game. I did, however, feel that at times the EMF device was a bit overpowered for my liking. I could hold it out at all times and this made it seamlessly easy to avoid crossing paths with the Wendigo.
There are also several cameras placed around the map that are only for story purposes, which I felt needed to be more involved with the actual gameplay. For instance, it would have been an interesting feature to be allowed to switch between the different cameras during the game to have a more tactical approach to avoiding the Wendigo. This could give you much more options in your approach rather than just relying on the EMF and hoping he wasn’t in the section you were about to enter.
The main objective in ‘The Wendigo’ (besides avoiding death) is to collect a series of radios located around the mansion, before escaping. Once collected the radio will play an audio track which ties the story together nicely. It also seemed as though picking up the radios did in fact alert the Wendigo of your position which had me thinking about the perfect time to collect each radio to avoid giving my position away. This was a nice addition to adding more strategy to the game. The radios will spawn randomly around the map and they will only spawn after the last one is picked up meaning you must continuously research areas. As you collect more radios the Wendigo appears to become much more present around the map. Before finding my first radio I almost never crossed paths with the Wendigo, but as I collected more and more radios, he was teleporting around the map and it felt as though he was almost everywhere. This, I feel, was another especially great feature that made the game much more challenging. Towards the end, after collecting 8 out of the 10 radios, I did feel as though the teleporting ability did, however, get a bit out of hand, as he ended up spawning in front of me as I was hiding (made for a great video though).
I will also admit I was a little bit disappointed with the way in which you are killed when you get caught by the Wendigo. After such a great experience avoiding, running, and sneaking away from him, it was a shame that the end was merely a slash on the screen which transitioned to a darkened screen with your character falling over. Nonetheless, this did not diminish the overall thrill of the game. Playing for a second, a third, and even a tenth time, the feeling of anticipation did not leave me. With each new start to the game it felt like a fresh experience.
‘The Wendigo’ makes for a great thrill and a great experience. I found no issues running the game, nor did I come across any glitches or bugs. I would highly recommend this game as you certainly get your money’s worth.
- This review has been posted to the review section of the game on steam.