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Soon-to-launch Hellraid: The Escape promises effective handheld horror

Andrew Hayward | May 14, 2014
People flock to theaters to be startled by grisly slasher flicks or fire up a survival horror game on a home console and turn the lights down low for maximum impact. But generating that same level of terror on a comparatively tiny touch screen device has yet to be as effective an experience.

The use of a magic spell that lets you separate your soul from the body and float freely through the environment adds to the experience. You'll first use this spell to spot hidden numbers in the world and crack a code, but later in the stage, it allows you to inhabit the body of a garish beast to help you push deeper towards the exit.

Amidst the building atmosphere, I found myself tensing up, unnerved by the darkness. And then it happened — through the unknown, I suddenly stumbled upon a terrifying, chain-covered foe, who quickly slayed me. (I actually gasped audibly, to which my wife laughed — deservedly so, I suppose.) It was a real surprise, and if Hellraid: The Escape has more of those in store, then fans of moody and occasionally intense iOS games may want to take note.

Unfortunately, I accidentally hit a bug in that mission that allowed me to access a section earlier than intended, but then blocked me from exiting the stage — forcing me to play it over from the start. Hopefully that's something that Techland and developer Shortbreak have already stomped out for the proper release on Thursday, May 15.

Otherwise, Hellraid: The Escape's spooky puzzle solving and impressive atmosphere make it an intriguing upcoming option, even if you don't care about the attached console game.


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