Developer Krillbite Studio has revealed some free DLC for their quirky toddler horror platformer, Among the Sleep, which released on Steam in May. Apparently, the DLC has been developed in collaboration with the folks who helped the game raise nearly a quarter of a million dollars on Kickstarter last year. According to the announcement trailer, it’ll release on November 5 and looks like it will be set in a snowy cabin in the woods.
In related news, Among the Sleep is 40% off on Steam until Nov 3 as a part of its massive Halloween Sale.
Written by Vikki Blake, @_vixx
With all the hallmarks of a fun – if forgettable – seasonal hit, it’s tempting not to take Double Fine’s Costume Quest 2 too seriously.
But beneath the agreeable exterior beats the heart of a slick little RPG that’s as sweet and addictive as the Halloween candy we’re tasked with collecting. It’s no surprise that fans have been clamouring for a second instalment.
Costume Quest 2 plunges us back into the lives of Wren and Reynold – the fraternal twins you may recall from the original game – who once again find themselves stumbling unwittingly into yet another Halloween disaster, this time courtesy of arectypital bad guy Orel White – a pissed off dentist with a grudge against all things Halloween – who banishes the holiday.
And so our premise is set. The perky twins set off to locate the dentist and undo the past,
leaping back and fore through time via a selection of time portals whilst collecting candy from strangers and battling monsters along the way.
The gameplay plays out just as the original story. There’s a mishmash of puzzles, sidequests, turn-based battles and, naturally, trick-or-treating. With each door you knock in the hope of topping up your candy pail, there’s every chance you’ll encounter a weird and wonderful enemy instead of a friendly neighbour.
When a monster does step in and challenge you to a battle, your chosen flavour of twin transforms into whichever costume they happen to be wearing at the time. On most occasions, the costumes – and their associated superpowers – are fantastically fun, with each lending it’s own particular RPG flavour (Soldier, Medic etc.).
Unsurprisingly, this means that, initially, you’ll need to seek out bigger and better costumes. This is not as easy as it seems. Whilst some costumes come ready-to-wear, many do not, and to complete them you need to think strategically – and sometimes a little experimentally – and explore your surroundings to locate the materials and patterns necessary to create your costume.
That said, the costume selection is by no means a prerequisite, and it’s probably pretty easy to sail through the game with nothing but the costumes you and your friends arrive wearing (our Candy Corn companion aside). Once you settle into a party that works as you’d like, it’s hard to bust out of the rut and experiment with the new outfits.
Which brings us onto the battles themselves. Rarely challenging, the turn-based combat offers up the bog-standard mix of basic attack with the occasional individual special power, although these can be enhanced by collecting/purchasing Creepy Treat cards.
Time-based responses and button-prompts are your tools and whilst they’re rarely difficult, it’s easy to mis-time the odd attack and have a colleague expire as a consequence. The key, as you might expect, is to mix up the cards and your characters so that each contributor brings something different to the fighting arena.
The issue here is that the combat rarely challenges you, and you may often find your curious exploration of the story environs stuttered by interruptions of the rinse-repeat combat sequences. Animations are rehashed over and over, and progression feels consciously sluggish compared to the original. Oh, and I did I mention that you have to backtrack, endlessly, to fill up your life meters after each battle? No? Maybe that’s because I was so frickin’ tired of it, I STOPPED CARING.
That said – and somewhat amazingly – the game’s holiday-themed foundation rarely feels cheesy or forced. The environments are colourful and detailed, crammed with Halloween-based props that lend a rich, warm and comfortable glow to the various backdrops that are the perfect setting for this warm, occasionally laugh-out-loud story.
Even though you can often see the next twist or turn coming a mile off, that doesn’t detract from the enjoyment in any way thanks to a (mostly) sharp, witty script. (And at least this time you can read the text at your own leisure – the original game was not so obliging.)
The Final Word: There’s a heady mix of exploration and combat here, and whilst the latter can, on occasion, be a little tiresome, it’s not quite enough to tamper the enjoyment. In fact, very little does – Costume Quest 2 is fun and funny way to while away a few hours long after the Halloween decorations and candy pails have been boxed away for another year.
Let’s say you read my review, but you’re still unsure about The Evil Within. If that’s the case, Bethesda just made it even easier to decide whether or not Shinji Mikami’s long anticipated return to survival horror is worth your time by offering a lengthy demo of the game that can be downloaded right now, free of charge, on Steam.
The demo covers the first three chapters of The Evil Within, so it’s pretty substantial. In the event that you fall hopelessly in love with its gory charm, purchasing the full game will let you save any progress made playing the demo.
Also, for some reason, they’re offering free copies of Call of Cthulhu with each purchase.
The Evil Within is available now on PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One.
Aside from being the first sequel in about six years, Alone in the Dark: Illumination is special in that it will — for the first time ever — add cooperative multiplayer to a series that’s exclusively been about the solo experience for over two decades. As someone who’s managed to sink several hundred hours into Left 4 Dead, I’m looking forward to seeing how a similar multiplayer component will work in a series like Alone in the Dark.
At the very least, I’d like it to be good enough to help me forget about the still MIA Left 4 Dead 3.
You can pre-order Alone in the Dark: Illumination for $26.99 (10% off) right now on Steam.
Oh, and happy Halloween!
It’s Halloween, so what better way to celebrate than with some ghoulish dancing and partying? Gather your candy, adjust your masks, make sure your costume is on tight, and get ready for Bobby (Boris) Pickett & The Crypt-Kickers‘ “Monster Mash”!
Really, could there be a more perfect song for tonight? Get on down and enjoy this performance from American Bandstand!
Blackest Rainbow records has opened up pre-orders for the soundtrack to 2013′s revenge thriller Blue Ruin. Composed by brothers Brooke and Will Blair, the core is heavily influenced by horror films of the 80′s and their synth scores and yet also has elements of sinister ambience and classical melodies.
Blackest Rainbow is releasing the soundtrack on vinyl with two color variants. The first edition will be 180-gram blue vinyl with a rust haze and will be limited to 150 copies. The second edition is also 180-gram blue vinyl but this time with rust splatters and is also limited to 150 copies.
You can pre-order the soundtrack via Bandcamp. Shipping will occur in December. Head below to stream the music, which is perfect for creating a terrifying Halloween experience.
Jeremy Saulnier’s Blue Ruin premiered at 2013 Cannes Film Festival to great critical acclaim and won the FIPRESCI Prize. It gained distribution and opened in the US to April 2014 to a great response from critics and audiences.
This revenge thriller focuses largely on the consequences of revenge, and the main act of revenge you expect will be the focus of the film happens early on and it spirals progressively into even darker and grim territory, dramatically enhanced by the score by brothers, Brooke and Will Blair. The relationship between composers and director has been long standing, having all known each other since they were kids, with Jeremy and the film’s Macon Blair, who plays lead protagonist Dwight, working on films for quite sometime. Macon, also happens to be the elder sibling to Brooke and Will. Brooke and Will composed music to most Jeremy’s previous work, and Macon also starred in some of this output.
Being so familiar with one another personally, Jeremy’s horror and 80s inspired early work, and his love of Carpenter’s music, the brothers settled a synth based score, which feels remarkably organic, and at times even almost classical. Minimal tones gliding through one another, with the tense and melancholic themes of the film, percussion seemed like it would detract from the tone of the film. However at times there is a slight percussion sound, which was created from a sample of Macon’s heartbeat, that was unexpectedly captured on set by his lavalier mic on set. Editor Julia Bloch sent them a short file, which was manipulated into a “drum”. It seemed appropriate to incorporate Dwights’ actual life force, his heartbeat into the score. The intensity of this picture is driven home through the power of this score.
Promoting his new Director’s Cut of Nightbreed – now available on Blu-ray – horror legend Clive Barker spoke with EW about the project among other things. One such project is the long-gestured Hellraiser remake.
The writer reveals he recently sent Dimension Films chief Bob Weinstein the second draft of his screenplay for a new Hellraiser movie, which Barker describes as a “very loose” remake of his original film.
“I think the phrase is ‘reboot,’ although I’ve never really understood what that meant,” he says. “I wanted to make sure we sounded some fresh notes. The movie actually begins on Devil’s Island. I wanted to fold into the Hellraiser narrative something about the guy—the Frenchman Lemarchand—who made the mysterious box, which raises Pinhead. I figured, ‘Well, what would have happened to him?’ He might well have been taken to Devil’s Island and I thought that would be a pretty cool place to start the movie. We’re waiting for Bob to come back to us and see when we’re going to actually make the movie.”
Apparently, there’s a loophole in the rights that if a movie isn’t made in a specific amount of time, it reverts back to the original rights holder. This is why Dimension Films puts out shit sequel after shit sequel. Now, if all of that pain and suffering us fans were put through was to eventually get a Clive Barker-directed reboot off the ground, it would be worth it.
And Pinhead would be proud of what Dimension made us go through to get it…
The recent resurgence of horror soundtracks on vinyl is something we’ve been supporting and following for quite a while now. Trust me when I say that we’ve been loving every second of it. It’s incredible to see people cherish these scores and get excited over upcoming releases.
Two such labels that are responsible for releasing fantastic reissues are Death Waltz, and Waxwork. They’re each responsible for stunning albums that have unbelievable packaging and stellar audio quality. Meanwhile, Rendezvous is a DJ collective that pays tributes to the horror films of the 60′s through 80′s, giving homage to “…global psychedelia, incredibly strange cosmic funk, and other sleazy listening oddities”
Today, each of these labels have released their own unique spin on a Halloween mixtape. Combined, you have nearly three hours of punk/metal, giallo, and horror scores. Head on down for some extra tunes for tonight’s festivities!
Bloody-Disgusting has teamed up with metal band Incite to bring you the music video premiere for “WTF”, which comes from their brand new album Up In Hell! The video, which was directed by Robert Sexton, tells a strange, eerie tale of a couple who visit each other in the morgue, standing over each other’s corpses. What they do next is illegal in pretty much every single state.
Incite features Richie Cavalera, son of Max Cavalera (Soulfly, Killer Be Killed) on vocals.
Head on down to check out this extremely NSFW video as well as several behind-the-scene photos. Then make sure you grab their latest album Up In Hell digitally or physically (including vinyl) via Amazon.
Tour W/ 36 CRAZYFISTS, SKINLAB & ALL HAIL THE YETI
10/31 – South Lake Tahoe, CA @ Whiskey Dicks
11/1 – Portland, OR @ Ash St. Saloon
11/2 – Spokane, WA @ The Hop
11/3 – Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
11/5 – Redding, CA @ Bombay’s
11/6 – Santa Barbara, CA @ Velvet Jones
11/7 – San Diego, CA @ Brick By Brick
11/8 – Los Angeles, CA @ Los Globos
11/9 – Scottsdale, AZ @ Pub Rock
11/10 – Santa Fe, NM @ The Skylight
11/12 – Austin, TX @ Dirty Dog
11/13 – Dallas, TX @ The Gas Monkey
11/14 – Tulsa, OK @ Downtown Lounge
11/15 – Norman, OK @ Labryinth
11/16 – Wichita, KS @ Lizard Lounge
11/17 – Denver, CO @ Roxy Theatre
11/18 – Grand Junction, CO @ Mesa Theater & Club
11/19 – Idaho Falls, ID @ DB’S
11/20 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Bar Deluxe
11/21 – Las Vegas, NV @ Cheyenne Saloon
11/22 – Oakland, CA @ Uptown
11/23 – Chico, CA @ Lost on Main
Blood Music is on a serious roll with their signings and releases! I got hooked onto them when they announced that they were releasing Perturbator‘s Dangerous Days. Then I feel in love with their announcement that they’d be issuing the vinyl edition of Bilateral from Leprous, which is still one of my favorite albums of the last five years.
Coming soon they’ve got the debut album from GosT and it sounds like it’s going to be killer! Know how I know? Because they’ve released his remix of Carpenter Brut‘s “Roller Mobster” and the song is incredible! Horror synth with a dance club kick and an absolutely sick bass line towards the end.
But the best part is that you can download the track for free via Bandcamp! It’s under a “name your price” method, so if you feel that the track warrants a little spare change, definitely throw it their way to give them a Halloween treat!
Just in time for Halloween we’ve got the exclusive preview of James Tynion IV’s young adult horror comic “The Woods” #7 from BOOM! Studios. Looks like things are really gearing up to go insane next week, so take a look at next week’s horrible sights right here, right now.THE WOODS #7
Authors: James Tynion IV Artist: Michael Dialynas Cover Artist: Michael Dialynas Price: $3.99 Synopsis: The swarm has finally arrived, and it’s going to take the combined efforts of both the kids and the mysterious hunters to survive the onslaught. Meanwhile, we take a look at Ben on the night of the play one year ago, and his struggles to both be himself and be happy.
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre prequel is about to shed some serious gore.
A few weeks back we exclusively reported that Millennium Films had been talking with two sets of directors to get behind the camera for Leatherface, the prequel that would go back before Tobe Hooper’s 1974 The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and tell of Leatherface’s teenage years.
We can exclusively confirm this Halloween day that Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo, the duo behind the slasher masterpiece Inside (À l’intérieur), as well as Livide and the forthcoming Among the Living, will be helming Leatherface for Millienum and Lionsgate.
As I revealed in the aforementioned piece, the duo were also courted for New Line Cinema’s A Nightmare On Elm Street remake back in 2009. Now, it looks as if the French filmmakers will bring their splatter-soaked cinema talents to the States for another slasher franchise, the new Chainsaw prequel.
The biggest issue with Texas Chainsaw 3D was that it had an identity crisis – it didn’t know if it wanted to be fun or violent. I expect an onscreen slaughter with Leatherface. I expect a return to the grit and grime of the original. I expect it all from Maury Bustillo…
For those who have not seen Inside, go check it out and see why you should be beyond excited.
Seth M. Sherwood wrote the screenplay.
Millennium Films, who was behind the 2013 Texas Chainsaw 3D, is once again producing with Christa Campbell, Lati Grobman and Carl Mazzacone, for Lionsgate.
Being a user of this site, I’m sure you love to be scared, chilled, or downright shaken to your core. Today being Halloween we all take part in a little bit of horror, and if you’re not keen on staying in and watching horror movies all night (who am I kidding?) Then perhaps you could be interested in a little terrifying reading that will get your night off to a spooky start, or serve as the perfect nightcap to an evening of dread.
Mixing in with our bag of Halloween Treats is a daily goodie that was released each day leading up until Halloween (that’s today!).
“Fun Size Horror” is a horror film collective that has come together to create 31 films to celebrate Halloween!
We conclude this morning with Ali Presley Paras’s “Quad,” which follows three teens who are attacked by a sinister slasher while you watch the carnage on four concurrent quadrants, and Josh C. Waller’s “The Collection,” about a well-respected photographer(Lance Reddick) who meets with a young model (Allie Gonino) for a private session which leaves her traumatized.
While we wait for Paul Feig‘s reboot of Ghostbusters to hit in a few years, there are many worse ways to kill the time than this fantastic recreation of the original’s trailer done by the kids at Raw Art Works, a nonprofit based out of Lynn, Massachusetts. Check it out and then watch the side-by-side comparison!
One of the greatest vampire movies of all-time is Near Dark, the Kathryn Bigelow-directed 1987 masterpiece penned by Eric Red.
In it, a small-town farmer’s son reluctantly joins a traveling group of vampires after he is turned by a beautiful drifter. Bill Paxton, Adrian Pasdar, Jenny Wright, and Lance Henriksen starred.
But what if they made a sequel?
Red, who created the original, had some ideas, which he put down on paper. This paper became a treatment, which is shared exclusively over at AITH. Here’s what Red had to say about it:
Ten years ago, I got to thinking about what would happen if the saga of NEAR DARK continued in a way that stayed true to the modern vampire western fundamentals of the piece. The vampire clan of Jesse, Severn, Diamondback and Homer had to have kin, after all. So I mapped out a sequel. Allowing for the passage of time since the original, the follow up picks up fifteen years later and follows Caleb and Mae’s now grown daughter, Sarah. You can read it here for the first time anywhere. The film will never get made, but so what? Happy Halloween horror fans, here’s the outline of how I saw NEAR DARK II!
Hard rock/metal band Freak Kitchen have released an animated video for their track “Freak Of The Week”, which you can see below.
The video has been getting a lot attention since its release due to its fantastic animation style. It was directed by Juanjo Guarnido, who is an ex-Disney animator, which is why the video has a strong feel of films like Atlantis or Tarzan, which Guarnido worked on.
Not only is the video awesome but the song is highly addictive and really exciting! Go down and enjoy!
Seat belts protect you from scary things: a Halloween-related campaign by OHSP reminds motorists seat belts can save you from a zombie attack.
But really, they can’t.
Get even more Halloween treats here.
V/H/S: Viral is NOW on VOD platforms (with a limited theatrical run slated for November 21st), and Magnet released a new art poster inspired by Gregg Bishop’s magical mayhem that stars The Signal‘s Justin Welborn as Dante the Great!
The new tape features segments directed by Marcel Sarmiento (Deadgirl, the incredible The ABCs of Death segment “D Is for Dogfight”), Nacho Vigalondo (Timecrimes, Extraterrestrial), Gregg Bishop (The Other Side, Dance of the Dead), as well as Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead (Resolution, Spring).
“A police chase after a deranged ice cream truck has captivated the attention of the greater Los Angeles area. Dozens of fame—obsessed teens flock to the streets with their video cameras and camera phones, hell—bent on capturing the next viral video. But there is something far more sinister occurring in the streets of L.A. than a simple police chase. A resounding effect is created onto all those obsessed with capturing salacious footage for no other purpose than to amuse or titillate. Soon the discovery becomes that they themselves are the stars of the next video, one where they face their own death.”
Patrick Lawrie, Emmy Argo, Heather Hayes, Jessica Luza, John Curran, Justin Welborn, Mary Ralston, Michael Aaron Milligan, Gustavo Salmerón, Marian Álvarez, Xavi Daura, Esteban Navarro, Nick Blanco, Chase Newton, Shane Bradey and Jayden Robison star.
Marcel Sarmiento, TJ Cimfel, Dave White, Gregg Bishop, Nacho Vigalondo, Justin Benson and Aaron Moorehead wrote the screenplays.
Poster from IMDB:
Photo by RM Guera – © 2014 – Magnet Releasing
Editorial By: Giaco Furino
When Saw first hit theaters a decade ago it sent a shockwave through horror culture. Mainstream moviegoers got a grisly dose of blood while hardcore horror fans relished the thoughtful plotting. And it changed the style of horror for the next decade. But it was definitely against the popular trend leading up to it’s release. After the release of movies like Scream the safe bet in horror, as a writer or director, was to wink at yourself while the blood flowed.
So how, in the first half of the aughts, did a brutal and clever movie spring from the candy-sweet horror of the nineties? How did Saw come to be after a decade of Leprechaun and Puppetmaster sequels pouring onto the shelves of video rental stores? It didn’t come out of nowhere, so we’re going to take a look at some films from the nineties and early aughts that paved the way for Saw.
We’re focusing this list on movies from the nineties because it was a time when good, gritty horror just didn’t come easy. But We’d be amiss if we didn’t mention the long legacy of gory, grisly horror from the seventies and eighties that, of course, paved the way for Saw. Check out classics like The Last House on the Left, Zombi 2, and (duh) Texas Chainsaw Massacre. With that bit of lip service done to our elders, let’s jump into the era of Tongue-in-cheek horror and Tamagotchis to see what really led the way to Saw.
Silence of the Lambs (1991)
Thirteen years before Jigsaw set devious traps for his captives, Hannibal Lector became a household name as the world got to know their first truly lovable serial killer. The movie won five academy awards, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Picture. But awards aside, Silence of the Lambs set the groundwork for the race-against-the-clock serial killer movies we know and love today. Looking at the horror movies that followed Silence, it’s baffling. It’s as if no one was paying any attention.
Say his name five times. Go on, do it! If you won’t, it’s because you’ve seen this 1992 shocker and it got under your skin. Adapted from a Clive Barker short story, this movie took pleasure in the slow building dread of modern horror. It’s killer is an impressive force, it’s scares are legitimate, not just jump scares, and Candyman questioned everything from adultery to class warfare. Candyman was a lighthouse in the fog of watered down sequels in the nineties. As Roger Ebert wrote in his review of the film, “What I liked was a horror movie that was scaring me with ideas and gore, instead of simply with gore.”
Wes Craven’s New Nightmare (1994)
Did we just take a jab at sequels? In the case of New Nightmare we take it back! As the seventh movie in the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, Craven set out to bring the nightmare back into Nightmare. As the slasher pics got more and more ridiculous in the late eighties and nineties, Wes Craven had the sense to try and darken the tone again. It’s benchmarks like these that kept the horror genre from swinging too far into the ludicrous, even if New Nightmare only barely doubled it’s budget in gross returns.
This is an easy one. In fact, when Saw first came out many accused them of copying from Seven. The story of a psychopathic serial killer who teaches his victims a lesson or two before dispatching them had some calling Saw a rip-off. But I don’t think that’s fair. As Saw scribe Leigh Whannell explained in an interview from 2004, “What we always liked about SAW […] was the fact that the story is told from the point of view of two of the psychopaths victims, instead of the police chasing after him, as you so often see.” Still it’s safe to say that without Seven, I don’t think we would have ever had a Saw. What’s in the box? Inspiration!
Event Horizon (1997)
Hold. Your. Horses. Don’t shoot! This sci-fi flop from 1997 may have been panned by critics and canned by audiences, but there’s a lot of good work done in this film. The visuals are astounding, the hell scenes are terrifying, and the gore is wonderful. Even though the pacing is way off in this movie, it’s mix of Hellraiser and Alien left an aesthetic vastly different from the horror around it. We know this movie isn’t the best… but we don’t care! Sometimes something as small as people getting their skin ripped off in space is enough to turn a tide.
When I think good nineties horror, for some reason Strangeland also comes to mind first. This is a movie that scares in movements. There’s the “chase the killer” section of the film, and the “reformation” section, and then a crazed final act. The torture scenes are right up there on par with Saw. The psychological profiling and characterization going on feel honest and real. And the acting by Twisted Sister’s own Dee Snider and Robert Englund (among others) is pretty well grounded for such a fantastical plot. The technology, like all tech in the 90’s, looks corny by today’s standards, but this 1998 shocker was a brutal as any entry in the Saw series.
Cabin Fever (2002)
Eli Roth, so instrumental in the formation of horror in the aughts, burst onto the scene with this sticky flick. Cabin Fever ruminated on body horror in a way that must have made David Cronenberg proud. The movie was full of gore and guts, with a virus literally tearing a small group of twenty somethings apart. This heavy gore was like a glass of cold water thrown at the sleepy horror genre. It screamed: The aughts are here, let’s get bloody.
Were there other movies in the 1990’s that stood out? Of course! But these seven entries kept the genre grounded while silly sequels, tongue-in-cheek horror for teens, and straight to video messes ruled the decade. By the time we got to Saw we, as fans of the genre, had been prepped for the decadent gore that was about to be unleashed. Watch some of these “classics” before you pop in Saw for it’s tenth anniversary… we bet you’ll see the connections.