Video game Until Dawn still astounds players despite release in 2015 (computer art)

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In a cabin in the woods, eight friends enjoy a winter getaway. The monsters lying outside of the cabin have other plans for them, however.

Until Dawn is a horror game developed and published by Supermassive Games for the PlayStation 4 (PS4) system. The game is a PS4 exclusive, which makes it a lot harder to obtain for PlayStation 3 (PS3) owners.

The story follows eight friends: Josh, Ashley, Mike, Sam, Chris, Emily, Matt and Jessica. One year prior to the game’s start, all eight plus Josh’s twin sisters Hannah and Beth are staying at a winter lodge. After a prank on Hannah goes extremely wrong, Beth runs after her. All the while, Beth is being pursued by a wendigo, a cannibalistic monster that feasts upon its prey strictly at night and has a skin that can only be broken with extreme heat. The wendigo corners Hannah and Beth on a cliff, where Hannah and Beth fall to what seems like their deaths.

An element Until Dawn has that most games do not is “quick-time events” (QTEs). QTEs require a player to press a corresponding button in a very short amount of time. These QTEs can greatly impact one’s storyline. In Chapter 4, Jessica is taken by a wendigo. The player is playing as Mike, and if he misses too many QTEs, he will come across Jessica’s dead body in an elevator shaft. However, if he completes every QTE, he will come across Jessica unconscious, but alive nonetheless.

The whole game is based on a theory called “the butterfly effect,” which states that small events a person causes can have major and more important effects later in their lives. With the whole game being centered around this, Until Dawn has a strict saving system with the system saving only after you complete a chapter. With the multiple butterfly effect achievements one can get, the saving system stops the player from going back to get the missing butterfly effects that he may have bypassed.

The game is made to have multiple endings that can lead to over nine hours of gameplay if you try to solve each butterfly effect. Certain butterfly effects can cause a different outcome for the story. Some butterfly effects can be the root of how a character lives or dies.

Despite the game being released in 2015, Until Dawn still astounds players with its amazing special effects, high quality scenery and creative plot line. The plot line changes both halves of the game, depending on the choices the player makes, which is why it is so creative. The game has received a 79% rating on Metacritic, a ⅘ rating on Common Sense Media and a 7.5 rating on IGN.