If you’re looking for a summertime fright, look no further than The career, a brilliant new video game that offers scares as satisfying as any horror movie. It’s billed as a spiritual successor to 2015’s hit Supermassive Games, Until dawn. This game won over audiences with a gripping monster story, a fun cast of characters, and intense moments of terror. After its release, the studio released several horror titles under its Dark Pictures Anthology series, but none reached the high bar that Until dawn Position. However, The career comes incredibly close.
The career follows a group of camp counselors together as they try to survive another night at Hackett’s Quarry. Ryan, Dylan, Emma, Abi, Nick, Kaitlyn and Jacob are preparing to leave when their car breaks down (as is the tradition of the genre).
Shortly after, their manager, Chris Hackett, forcefully tells the counselors to stay inside the lodge until the next morning, when he will return with help. But since this is a horror game, it doesn’t take long for the counselors to disobey and try to make the most of their last night at Hackett’s Quarry. This decision has terrifying consequences.
What does not kill you makes you stronger
As the night progresses, a mysterious monster torments and pursues the unfortunate campers. The group initially mistakes him for a bear, but it’s much deadlier and faster. As a player, your goal is to keep them alive until sunrise, and maybe even defeat the monster and discover its origins along the way.
Characters live or die based on your choices and your ability to react to button prompts in time. Consider this: a shortcut might get you closer to saving a struggling character, but you might also encounter more of these quick events along the way, giving you more of a chance to mess up and meet an untimely death. You’re never sure you’ve made the “right” choice until it’s too late. Should you fire your shotgun at the rustling bush? And if it’s a friend of yours over there, who’s hiding? And if it was rather the monster?
You also need to hold your breath. Not really. If the monster gets close, the game forces you to press a button until it goes away. If you release the pressure, your character will exhale – and that breath might be your last. It’s just another way The career does a great job of making you feel guilty, making you feel like if a character dies, it’s your default. Conversely, if you manage to escape from a delicate situation, the relief is exquisite.
Campy and well paced
The excellent presentation of the game also enhances its appeal. The developers took care to render actors such as Brenda Song (Kaitlyn), David Arquette (Chris Hackett), and Ted Raimi (Travis) in odd detail. The entire cast delivers memorable performances – it really does feel like a charming B movie.
Whereas The career feels shorter than Until dawn, the game’s pacing is immaculate – none of its 10 chapters overstays its welcome. The story twists around the second half of the game let me know more about Hackett’s Quarry. That’s because the monster isn’t just scary, it also has an intriguing story. Throughout the game you will find clues and evidence surrounding the history of the place. I was so fascinated by the lore that I scoured every area for evidence.
Customizable and replayable
The collector’s itch doesn’t stop there. You can also collect hidden tarot cards to see snippets of possible futures, including how certain characters might die. This knowledge can help you avoid a gruesome fate, but without context, it can also mislead you.
Depending on who manages to stay alive, each of the advisors gets relatively equal screen time and moments to shine. While they start off as simple work buddies, you can steer them towards a real sense of camaraderie as they realize they have to work together to survive the night. If there’s anything I had to nitpick, that’s it. The careerThe finale of does not have the same punch as Until dawn‘s done. Either way, the game’s narrative and pacing are remarkably consistent.
The career also has settings that make the game more accessible and approachable. You can customize captions, text size, and color blindness options. You can configure all Apnea Segments, Quick Events, and Combat Encounters to automatically succeed whenever they occur. You can also increase the time you have to make difficult decisions to relieve your anxiety. The game even sports a “death rewind” feature to let you redo a choice that killed a beloved character.
After completing the game, Chapter Select opens, giving you the option to go back and pick up all the collectibles and achievements you missed the first time around. However, it lacks a scene skip or fast forward function. I had to grit my teeth and watch scenes when I just wanted to hurry up and get to a certain section of the game.
Despite these minor complaints, I had a fantastic time with The career. Its captivating history and lore held my attention until the very end. While horror protagonists specialize in annoying behavior, none of them The career’really bothered me — I was shocked to find that I didn’t hate any of them! For those who wanted a true successor to Until dawn, The career is about as good as it gets – the best horror game I’ve played all year.