Back in 2014, Goblinz took the casual gaming world by storm with the still-so-brilliant first chapter of True Fear: Forsaken Souls. This second chapter in the horror adventure franchise takes off right after the cliffhanger ending, Holly Stonehouse has now arrived at the Dark Falls Asylum to continue her search into her ominous family history. But what would she do when the asylum comes alive at night and she is being attacked from an unknown shadow?
The first True Fear game was known for its slow-building narrative and immersive, bone-chilling atmosphere. True Fear: Forsaken Souls Part 2 feels like a natural progression from the first part, adopting what its predecessor did right and amped it up to an eleven! This is not a narrative-filled game. Unlike many casual adventures, the game’s storytelling does not revolve around character dialogs and not all storyline details and plot points are explicitly explained. Instead, the game relies on slow but deliberate pacing, cryptic clues, and memory flashbacks. In a way, this reminds me of some of the more atmospheric Mystery Case Files games (such as Dire Grove and Shadow Lake), but with a singular focus on horror.
Compared to the first chapter, True Fear: Forsaken Souls Part 2 plays more like a thriller considering its more aggressive themes and more sudden twists. What makes True Fear: Forsaken Souls Part 2 such an effectively riveting horror game is certainly its pitch-perfect production. The visuals are dark and gritty, but extremely precise – making the game feels like a nightmarish dream sequence. The atmospheric music is also excellent for building up and maintaining suspense and the timing of certain sound effects could not have been more accurate. In terms of animations and cutscenes, I would say that they are better than what we have come to expect from a casual adventure. The characters can still look a little claylike, but at least their natural movements make up for it.
Fans of the Hidden Object Puzzle Adventure genre will find it familiar navigating True Fear: Forsaken Souls Part 2, as it plays exactly like a HOPA, minus the hidden object scenes. Still, the game features less obvious hints and less hand-holding than a generic HOPA, which makes it quite a challenging adventure all-around. I also appreciate how the developer purely focuses on creating a perfect adventure experience, without bothering to throw in unnecessary glitz and glamor – making True Fear: Forsaken Souls Part 2 a refreshingly raw game.
True Fear: Forsaken Souls Part 2 is surely not for the faint-hearted because the game’s generously long runtime of almost 10 hours is a rollercoaster of extreme sensory experiences. There is no other new game more perfect than this for Halloween 2019 and if it takes Goblinz a few years more to craft the third chapter that is as exhilarating as this, then so be it.
Don’t let the simple premise and the raw presentation fool you because True Fear: Forsaken Souls Part 2 is an outstanding horror adventure with incredible replayability that will be remembered for years to come.
True Fear: Forsaken Souls Part 2 was one of 2019’s editors’ picks, click here to check out other best hidden object and adventure games.