Bloober Team has carved out a reputation for itself as of late, becoming the name in atmospheric horror games. Similar to how I’m the name in making people think that there’s something wrong with me when I start experimenting in Hitman levels. Across games such as The Medium, Layers of Fear, and Blair Witch, one theme has been present: Encountering a certain kind of spooky evil that forces you to cheese it lest you hit the game over screen.
Bloober’s next game might be doing things a little differently, as the studio has begun recruiting for a number of positions on a “new big project,” with an eye on nabbing a combat programmer who knows a thing or two about both melee and ranged combat. If this is a big focus in Bloober’s next game, it’ll be the first time that the studio has allowed players to properly fight back against dread nasties in the dark since Basement Crawl in 2014. Don’t worry about Bloober going full action though, as several of the job listings also call out being a fan of horror as being a bonus a perk.
The Medium was also a bit of a departure for Bloober, because while it maintained the studio’s trademark sense of oh crap, it shifted the camera from first-person to third-person for its afterlife-crossing perspective. “Literally straddling the line between supernatural and real-world horror, The Medium is satisfying, sleek, and sophisticated in every department,” Noelle wrote in her review.
While it makes only limited use of its signature simultaneous reality mechanic, and features some of the same gameplay frustrations as earlier Bloober Team games, it’s easy to overlook such stumbles. The Medium sidesteps scare gimmicks to deliver a masterclass in mature horror, one rooted in atmosphere, all-round restraint and an enthralling region-specific story.
I doubt I’ll get past the main menu, because I’m still a massive coward.
Last Updated: February 4, 2021