This morning marked the start of Summer Game Fest ‘22, a now-annual event where AAA and indie developers showcase their latest and greatest reveals, trailers, and announcements. For players, there is no shortage of thrilling news to come out of Summer Game Fest, but this year, horror gamers may have been the real winners.
Coming off the heels of an already exciting few weeks that gave us release dates for The Callisto Protocol, the Resident Evil 4 remake, and the Dead Space remake, Summer Game Fest kicked things off with several selections sure to make any horror fan giddy.
We have the full breakdown of the show’s foray into horror, including a deeper look at some known titles and a few notable reveals.
Aliens: Dark Descent
Summer Game Fest kicked off with quite the surprise – a new Aliens game from Tindalos Interactive, the studio behind Battlefleet Gothic: Armada. Dark Descent is a squad-based single-player strategic adventure that sends Colonial Marines to the Moon Lethe to combat a xenomorphic threat.
Players will control their squad and combat aliens and humans alike, changing their approach based on the scenario. Beef your squad with unique classes, level up marines to make them more formidable soldiers, and equip them with the latest in anti-xenomorph weaponry.
Dark Descent already looks like a unique Aliens experience, swapping out the frantic first-person firefight for something a little slower-paced, meticulous, and strategic. There’s no set released date yet, but Tindalos is aiming for a 2023 launch on PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.
The Callisto Protocol
We’ve been watching for progress on The Callisto Protocol since that brutally gruesome trailer dropped at the 2020 Game Awards. In the past week, we were treated to a better look at the title, with a trailer at Sony’s State of Play that showcased characters, monsters, and environments.During Summer Game Fest, we finally got a good look at gameplay with a brief snippet of Josh Duhamel as protagonist Jacob Lee.
Let’s just get out of the way that, yes, it does look a lot like Dead Space. That’s because the creator of Visceral’s space body horror title, Glen Schofield, is spearheading Callisto with some of Dead Space’s original team. This is clearly the sequel or remake that Schofield and company never had the chance to work on, thanks to Visceral’s closure after Dead Space 3.
The gameplay video gives us a glimpse of Jacob’s arsenal, which includes a punchy space pistol and the ability to grab and toss enemies with what appears to be a special glove. The Callisto Protocol will also feature melee combat, a dodge mechanic, and environmental kills. Because Schofield and company are a little twisted, there will also be many creative and grizzly ways for Jacob to die.
The Callisto Protocol is slated for a December 2, 2022, release date.
The Last of Us Part I
Rumors of a The Last of Us remake were confirmed technically before Summer Game Fest started, thanks to a PlayStation Direct. Dubbed The Last of Us Part I, the remake is being built from the ground up, utilizing modern gameplay and controls for an accessible experience that hopes to bridge the gap between the die-hard fans and gamers that couldn’t get quite get into it.
Releasing on the PS5 and PC, this is more than just a remaster. While it is looking primarily like a scene-for-scene remake, likely with the Left Behind DLC integrated into the core narrative, Part I is mechanically and visually a whole new game.
The Last of Us Part I is launching on September 2, 2022, and will retail for a painful $69.99. On the one hand, we understand the improved fidelity will be worth full retail price. On the other, if you’ve played the original, the remaster, or both, another $70 is a steep ask for a thematically identical experience.
The Last of Us Multiplayer
There really isn’t much to say about The Last of Us’ mysterious multiplayer mode, save that Neil Druckmann noted it will be quite large and have its own built-in story. Does that mean the whole concept of Factions, the popular multiplayer mode attached to the first game, is scrapped? We’re thinking not. If anything, all of the behind-the-scenes rewards and punishments of survivors joining your faction or leaving will happen in real-time.
While we didn’t get much of anything, we did get this concept art, suggesting the scope and scale of the finished product.
Indie studio Fallen Leaf is pulling no punches when it comes to its sci-fi horror title, Fort Solis. How do we know? Because it spent quite a bit on securing award-winning voice actors, Troy Baker (The Last of Us, BioShock Infinite, Arkham Origins) and Roger Clark (Red Dead Redemption 2, Bac 4 Blood).
Fort Solis follows medical officer Wyatt Taylor (Baker) and maintenance engineer Jack Leary (Clark), two workers at the Martian mining post who quite frequently butt heads. Of course, as things start to go wrong, the two either need to overcome their differences or succumb to the dangers plaguing the facility.
Baker and Clark took the stage during Summer Game Fest and provided some insight into Fort Solis, which is being developed on Unreal Engine 5 (UE5). Baker described the game as a “tight thriller,” so players should expect a slow-burn horror experience with a deep and engaging narrative.
Fallen Leaf provided no release date for Fort Solis but did confirm a Steam release when it does launch.
Layers of Fears
Layers of Fear was one of those psychedelic horror thrillers that either sucked you in completely or bored you to tears. Its sequel, Layers of Fear 2, was pretty much the same. So, we expect that Layers of Fears will cater to the same crowd as, according to developer Bloober Team, it’s being built on the “foundations of Layers of Fear, Layers of Fear: Inheritance, and Layers of Fear 2.”
Don’t get it twisted, though. Layers of Fears is its own game, featuring an all-new narrative and improved visuals thanks to UE5. The game keeps with the first-person view and continues to focus on themes of artistic obsession. How it will differ much from other entries is still mostly unknown, especially since Bloober is hinting that the game will serve as a sort of remastered collection while delivering something new.
“Our plan was to recreate the games, but we didn’t want to make it a simple collection of two remastered games,” Bloober CEO Piotr Babieno explained in a press release. What that means, we’re still waiting to find out. Unfortunately, it may be a while until more layers are pulled off this spooky digital enigma.
Currently, there is no release date for Layers of Fears.
First announced back in November 2012, Routine was expected to land on Steam in spring 2013. Whatever happened, we’re glad to see that Lunar Software didn’t give up on its sci-fi horror. Quite the opposite, actually, as the team rebuilt it from the ground up.
Players are sent to a Lunar base where, you guessed it, everything goes awry. The aesthetics are very Alien as the game takes on the appearance of the future a la the 1980s, but it lends to the eeriness of the entire experience.
The trailer below doesn’t give away much, but we know there’s going to be a lot of running, hiding, and hacking. Routine still doesn’t have a release date but is scheduled for launch on PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.