Much like the Dark Souls series’ now infamous tagline of, “Prepare to die,” I have always thought that the tagline for all of Frictional Games‘ iconic games should simply be, “Prepare to poop.” I think that we are all deeply familiar with the scores of “Let’s Play Amnesia” videos on YouTube, people sitting in darkly lit rooms, their pallid gamer faces pulled taut with tension, their slightly elevated voices betraying their attempts to keep their shit together, right before a lumbering monstrosity barrels toward them and brings their entire calm facade crashing down around them as their cheerleader-pitch screams awaken the neighborhood. I am one of those people that actually ENJOYS this sort of experience, and Frictional Games has been delivering this experience for several years now. They first struck gold with their Penumbra series of games, and then later became a much more widely recognized name with the aforementioned Amnesia, a game that, despite its title, is not likely to be forgotten for a long time.
Their new title, SOMA, takes the player to the depths of the ocean. This prospect has me quite excited since it’s a fairly uncommon setting for horror games, the most memorable one in recent history being the first Bioshock title. The ocean depths remains one of the greatest mysteries of our planet, and I have no doubt that Frictional Games will handle the setting with aplomb.
I’m actually trying to do my best to do as little research as possible on this title since I want to go in blind and do a Let’s Play for Alternate Fire. What I do know is that the player will be exploring a deep-sea research vessel that has gone silent. Some of the machines appear to be gaining sentience and exuding human-like traits. One of the major themes of the game, in addition to the horror elements, will be what it means to be human and how we react to physical appearances rather than what goes on in someone’s mind.
To get you in the mood for some pants-wetting fun (and who will notice anyway when you’re underwater?), check out the following video:
SOMA releases Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015.