The Quarry – Our 10 Biggest Takeaways After a Couple of Hours with the Game

The Quarry is shaping up to be another win for Supermassive.

Posted By | On 27th, May. 2022

The Quarry – Our 10 Biggest Takeaways After a Couple of Hours with the Game

Supermassive Games’ The Quarry is the studio’s first standalone game since Until Dawn. The studio hopes to learn from its experiences in working on The Dark Pictures Anthology while returning to a setting of smaller scope but stakes that are just as important. Eschewing the world-spanning story from The Dark Pictures Anthology, The Quarry is instead a love letter to classic teen horror movies.

We got to spend a couple of hours with the PC version of The Quarry. While the preview build we got to play was far from the full release, we did get to play just enough to understand the gist of the game and form a few opinions. Without further ado, here are our 10 biggest takeaways from spending a couple of hours with The Quarry.

Atmosphere

The first thing that The Quarry hits you with is its atmosphere. Sure, we’ve seen plenty of horror games with the same general premise, but some of the scariest parts of The Quarry were the quiet moments where you’re doing little more than walking around in a dark forest, or just looking for some towels in an old fishing hut. The Quarry does a phenomenal job of setting up the atmosphere, and the build up of tension leading up to its ultimate release is great.

Voice Acting

A lot of the characters’ humanity comes down to strong acting chops thanks to a phenomenal cast of actors. Featuring characters played by Ariel Winter, Justice Smith, and even David Arquette, the actors do a great job in nailing the facial expressions and voice acting that’s needed for a situation as tense as The Quarry presents. Even the quieter moments, like before things start getting really bad for our cast of camp counsellors, the actors do a great job in making you truly feel like these characters aren’t just a random group of strangers thrown together in a tense situation.

Amazing Facial Animations

The Quarry

Since its work on Until Dawn and the Dark Pictures Anthology, Supermassive Games has gotten insanely good at nailing facial animations and expressions, and the studio doesn’t disappoint on that front with The Quarry. Since a lot of the game is just characters talking with each other, it’s important that the situation is accurately captured in their reactions, and The Quarry definitely delivers on that front. From the smallest facial tics to the biggest expressions of exasperation, The Quarry’s cast of characters is really good at emoting.

Characters Feel Human

With great facial animations and voice acting, the two aspects combine to present a cast of characters that feel truly human. Be it their interactions around the crackling fires of a campsite while they’re simply playing truth or dare, or just a goofy contest for who gets peanut butter-based snacks, the camp counsellors come off as a fun group of people to be around. And once things start going truly wrong, their reactions—guided by the player—come off as some of the most realistic reactions one would expect. Where some characters would be calm and collected, others will start letting their adrenaline take over, making costly mistakes in the process.

Old-School Horror

The Quarry

The Quarry wears its influences on its sleeves, and the biggest influence seems to be classic slasher movies. Even the graphics options page gives you options for styles of horror films to visually emulate: indie horror, 80’s horror, and black-and-white classic horror. The writing takes this much further with a classic premise of youngsters being trapped in a mysterious forest while spooky things happen around them. Everything, from the setting, to the cast of characters, to even the horror elements, feels like it was inspired heavily by classic horror movies. Of course, the fact that the entirety of the game can be watched as if it were a movie from the Movie Mode certainly helps.

Smaller Scope, Gripping Story

The important thing to note about The Quarry is that it feels like the studio is going back to its roots with this one. Since its focus on the Dark Pictures Anthology, it has been a while since Supermassive Games told a more focused, concise story, and to that end, The Quarry feels like it’s closer to Until Dawn in scope and execution. Rather than jumping through various timelines like in Man of Medan, The Quarry wants to keep you in a single location and get really familiar with the setting. It wants you to get attached to the cast of characters, so that every mistake has weight and meaning. It wants you to feel the horror and pain the characters go through.

Well-Paced

The Quarry

While we only got to play a couple of the early chapters in The Quarry, the pacing was definitely not lacking. With a slow start, you get to know the protagonists. You get to see them bond over a fire at their camp site. You get to see some of their insecurities, their strengths, and a lot of their personalities. Most importantly, you’re constantly switching between characters, letting you experience the story through every character’s point of view on a regular basis. Once things start going wrong, you get to play through the same time frame with different characters. The Quarry’s pacing is great, at least early on in the game, and it doesn’t take too long for the horror to start.

Big Departure from Dark Pictures Anthology

The fact that The Quarry isn’t a part of the Dark Pictures Anthology actually does the game a huge service. Since it doesn’t have to worry about all the plot and baggage from Man of Medan or Little Hope, the scope can be narrower. The smaller scope works excellently for the type of story that The Quarry is trying to tell. Not everything has to be about a long-dead ancient evil and conspiracies, after all.

Paths Chosen

The Quarry

One of Supermassive Games’ greatest strengths has been the studio’s ability to make choices matter to a larger degree than most other games. If you’re familiar with the studio’s earlier works, you’ll be happy to know that The Quarry continues the same grand tradition. For those who don’t know, smaller choices in The Quarry will end up to some of the bigger choices mattering even more. Characters strengthen and strain their relationship with each other, depending on player choices, and by the end of the game, there isn’t even any real guarantee of who, if any, of the cast of characters will survive.

Awesome Setting

Hackett’s Quarry is one of the more interesting settings in a recent horror games. While nowhere nearly as insane as some other games, there’s a certain level of ‘real-ness’ to The Quarry’s setting that helps set it apart. The game will have players explore all over the place, and ultimately, get used to the titular quarry. Since it’s a horror game, when things inevitably start going wrong, Hackett’s Quarry becomes alien in a way that exemplifies the game’s horror elements. Just as easily as you’ll comfortably explore every nook and cranny of the fishing hut, you’ll be twitching at every extra footstep you hear, and you’ll be jumping at leaves blowing in the wind.


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