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Horror fans are surely familiar with the name Supermassive Games. This British studio is responsible for recent hits like The Quarry and the interactive drama series The Dark Pictures Anthology, with the latest entry being The Devil In Me. Supermassive also has the upcoming The Casting of Frank Stone in development – a horror experience set in the Dead by Daylight universe.

However, the studio first made its mark on the horror genre a decade ago with the PlayStation 4 exclusive Until Dawn. Originally intended to showcase the PS Move controllers, Until Dawn featured a strong cast providing voice acting and motion capture, including Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody), Hayden Panettiere (Heroes), Meaghan Martin (Kingdom Hearts 3), Brett Dalton (God of War Ragnarok), and Peter Stormare (Armageddon).

Set on the fictional Blackwood Mountain, Until Dawn sees players return one year after a tragic event. So why revisit this classic horror title now? At the recent State of Play, a remake built in Unreal Engine 5 was announced for PlayStation 5 and PC. Being developed by Ballistic Moon, this updated version of Until Dawn is slated for release later this year.

Until Dawn – The Future And The Past

So for the future, let’s look at a post on the PlayStation Blog by Neil McEwan the Creative Director, Ballistic Moon which says we can expect “new and improved animations build on the success of the original character performances. Characters, environments and VFX have been upgraded”. We also find the following for the upcoming remake

We use a broader cinematic tonal colour palette and new perspectives to make the story more nuanced and emotional. We’ve been brave enough to shine a light into the dark, unseen corners of Blackwood Mountain and added a third-person camera, which means you can now look behind the curtain of the original game, exploring enhanced and new locations with new interactions and collectables. 

Incorporating a third-person camera and adding contextual character movement animations, the game now allows the player to really feel the experience of that fateful night.

Until Dawn’s sound has undergone a massive overhaul too, featuring a new score from legendary horror composer Mark Korven.

We’ve endeavoured to keep the fantastic narrative integratory of the original, but we have seized the opportunity to expand upon unexplored emotional parts of the story.

We get told to expect more on this remake soon as well as the upcoming film adaptation.

Now To Revisit The Past

With the talk of a film and a remade version of the game, I decided to revisit the original story. In some places, the original game holds up incredibly well but after looking at The Quarry we can see where technology has improved incredibly. For example, lets look at some of The Quarry which was captured on Xbox Series X.

Let’s go back to the original visit to Blackwood Mountain. The game then looked fantastic for the time and still holds up in most parts today as previously stated.

Though lighting and character models are areas the original still looks good but compared to later releases is not as strong due to the difference in technology. If you want to see a comparison based on the remake trailer then see below

The game still plays well and for playability has held its own against more recent titles. It doesn’t offer the extended new sections to the story. However time will tell if these benefit or harm the experience. To judge how the game looks now then see the footage below captured on PlayStation 5 via backwards compatibility.

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