Enter a dark basement, dramatic stabs of a string quartet, an atmosphere of pure dread, lit by a few flickering lights while armed with a nail gun, our thought would be where would we go from here? It becomes apparent that the character Celeste is trapped and confused. Too venture into the dark unknown presenting the option to escape and figure out what she is doing there. As she explores further a dark figure drops out of a vent, with no way out she loads into it, eventually meeting her death from at the hands of this mysterious dark cloaked, faceless figure. This is only a small part of a large story, flowing back and forth through experiencing everything not only as Celeste but also at times as other characters involved in this twisted world. Test your heart rate in the survival horror directed by Chris Darril of Darril Arts, Developed by Stormind Games and published by Mordus Games/Darril Arts.
The player takes control of Celeste/Jennifer (same character), starting as a troubled teen living in a hotel for orphans with troubled pasts. Everything takes a turn into darkness as the player is swept into a living nightmare and uncovers the entirety of this dark story. Through memories and the present, the player will have to live through the horror Celeste experiences as they progress and all the pieces fall together.
Remothered: Broken Porcelain revolves around a drug created for post-traumatic stress disorder called Phenoxyl. Created by a crazy doctor, the drugs effects are a bit out of this world, linking mind control and moths and anything a crazy doctor would have con-cocked. Celeste has the special ability to enter a moth that helps her plan escape routes and look for items that could be missed from her point of view.
Remothered: Broken Porcelain will test the player’s stealth skills in being strategic with every approach as they search for a way out of the mad house. There is a lot of problem solving involved and objectives that give the player a path forward, although that path forward will present a challenging. There are stalkers to escape from, all freaky that will have the player’s heart racing. Players will need to decide whether to use stealth or attack in order to escape or progress further in the story. When Celeste gets attacked, gashes become visible and effects movement and the only way to strike back is following what buttons to push as they appear as a quick time mini game. As any real human, the character can only survive a few slashes. While in third person, the player even has the option to change over shoulder view from left to right (vice versa) which comes in handing when it comes to peering around corners like 3rd person shooters.
Controls are easy to use, showing in the top right what button can be used for different actiona such as picking up items, interacting with pictures that might provide clues, opening doors, vaulting over benches or hiding in the many hiding spots such as chests and cupboards to avoid stalkers. The inventory space is realistic, giving the player three slots for items used for distracting or blinding stalkers but being realistic can be limiting which gets frustrating at times. One extra slot is available for a defensive item such as knives or scissors. The limit of one item at any time really tests the player’s strategy of item placement around each environment. In order to use a defensive item the player will have to be brave enough to get close enough to who or what is stalking them and in which a mini game will trigger, so the player will have to have their wits about them. The items for distracting or blinding stalkers can be crafted in the way of combining items such as insecticide, which takes no space in the already limited four slots, giving the item a boost which is details the boost ability in the crafting menu. Crafting menu is easy to access and use and located with the inventory menu.
Remothered: Broken Porcelain also includes a skill tree that can be upgraded from stealth movement, to the items crafted and combining will even give a bigger boost. In order to upgrade skills, the player will need to collect moth keys scattered throughout each environment, although it is a negative that this is not made clear through the actual game, as there is no play through tutorial or pop ups.
Environments throughout are very dark and grainy, but this is part of unsettling setting; the atmosphere and mood drawing the player into the next jump scare. Cutscenes are not cinematic but stay in suit with the rest of the game and focuses on what the player is experiencing, with a lot of “WTF” moments. The soundtrack creates a suspenseful ambiance and will make any heart race. Voices for the characters are well acted and convincing. Everything ties together drawing the player into the horror experience.
There is no multi-player option making this game a single player experience, in which the only way to experience Remothered: Broken Porcelain is alone in a dark room. This being said, it can be paused at anytime during gameplay or if fear overwhelms the player and they need to take a break and dry their sweaty palms. The game can is not a long one, even for a survival horror, coming in at four hours that can stretch to six easily depending on the player’s ability of problem solving and how strategic they are overcoming each fearful stalker. This is a survival horror for the adults, as most horror themes involving course language and violence in where Remothered: Broken Porcelain doesn’t hold any punches.
Although there are bugs and glitches, I found them more comical than gameplay breaking and seemed to be adding a bit of unintentional humour to an already dark game. Although they do bring the player out of the moment, reminding us this is just a video game. Living through the story once is probably enough from most players, as revisiting would be mainly due to discovering things originally missed.
Harbz for One More Game
4 – Below average – We understand what is trying to be delivered with this title but it has missed the mark. The game is playable but I would only expect fans of the franchise to give it a go. Still wouldn’t pay full price for this one.
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Remothered: Broken Porcelain was reviewed on an Xbox One X. It is also available on PC, PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch.
The publisher kindly provided the code for this game. All thoughts on this game are ours and ours alone.