Sophie’s Curse could easily be considered one of the scariest PC games of 2016.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with the PC game, Sophie’s Curse, it is an indie horror game similar to Five Nights at Freddy’s, and it is currently available on Steam. When Markiplier started playing this, I knew I had to play it. It has everything any horror fan wants – a creepy old house, strange noises, a shrieking cat, and lots of jump scares.
This game is almost reminiscent of the movie Ju-On: The Grudge, and being able to play it in first person makes it that much better. You’re there to watch someone’s grandpa, and the kicker is that there is no electricity. Your only source of light comes from small crank generators that must be wound in order to keep the rooms lit, and it’s a bad day for everyone when any of those lights go out. Occasionally an error will read from the laptop located in the corner of the room and you only have a short time to fix the error unless you want a surprise visit from Sophie.
What can be said about Sophie? She’s mad, and she is out to get you. Initially, there was no backstory available for her, but recently the developer has incorporated one into the game play creating an even more chilling experience.
The game play is simple, and when you play it, you have to play it smart. Go in with a plan or be spontaneous, but whatever you do, don’t play it with the volume down. Sophie’s jump scares may be unpredictable, but she does give some warning. If you can hear her, there’s a chance you can avoid her. She will turn up when she feels like it, and of course she’ll be more active once the game progresses. Sometimes you’ll find her at the end of a hall or standing in a room, and that will give you some time to turn in the other direction, but if you’re even a split second too late she will get you.
There’s a formula to making jump scare games work – the atmosphere, effects, a little bit of backstory, and of course the scares. Sophie’s Curse is great because it combines all of those things in a way that messes with your psyche.
I won’t lie, it’s probably one of the scarier games I’ve played in a while. Evil Within was good, but it didn’t get to me on a psychological level. This game plays with your fears. That creaking you heard at the end of the hall is not just the wind; it’s Sophie, and apart from the old man sleeping upstairs, and Sophie crawling around the house, you are facing her alone. You are the only one Sophie wants to visit, and let’s face it, she’s not there for tea and biscuits.
It would be nice to know how Grandpa can sleep through the entire thing, virtually unaffected by the ghost in his house, and it begs the question – is that really grandpa sleeping beneath the covers? I hope by the end of the game I will get a clearer picture of the story, but for now I’m at 12am, just trying to survive until the morning comes.