One of the highlights for me from Sony at Gamescom was the showing of Until Dawn, since the re-reveal more news and impressions have been coming out, and one thing that’s taken the attention is that Until Dawn has 100’s of different endings.
The theory of the butterfly effect apparently plays a massive part in this game, and one door left shut can change the games final out come hours later. Here are snippets of a few experiences so far:
Until Dawn is all about player choice, offering thousands of play paths that lead to hundreds of possible endings. A lot of this is tied to one of the game’s mechanics called the Butterfly Effect.
During some of these choices, a small butterfly icon will appear in the upper right side of the screen. This indicates that the Butterfly Effect is underway. Pulled straight from chaos theory, the butterfly effect has it so that any one small change can bring about larger changes further down the road. For the purposes of Until Dawn, any one choice you make can have you going down any one path, eventually ending up at one of any of the hundreds of endings.
So opening the wrong door, picking up the right clue, or saying something when you should have said something else will take you down your own path. There’s a good chance that your path and ending will be nothing like your friend’s path and ending. As the game progresses, there’s a good chance that two people won’t see the same scenes or hear the same dialogue.
Believe it or not, Supermassive shot and recorded every possible scene and outcome for these branches and endings. They believe that being able to experience your choices adds to the suspense and horror of Until Dawn so they went to the trouble of auditioning 200 actors before getting to their current cast, which includes TV star Hayden Panettiere. They wanted only top actors to fit with the high definition capture and high volume of voice work required. From what I saw, they’ve done a nice job with both the casting and capture.
It may have been a room full of overworked, stressed and irritable journalists, but Until Dawn did something special when I went to see it at Gamescom: it made people jump, it made one woman scream and it made everyone laugh nervously and chatter about what they’d just seen happen.
For the record, that’s not the usual sort of reaction you see from a game being demoed to a group – especially not in Europe. So it’s clear from first (re-)sight that Until Dawn is getting the ‘horror’ bit down pat.
One playthrough of Until Dawn will take approximately nine hours, according to Samuels. So obviously you’ll want to replay it in order to see all of the possible outcomes and changes that can be seen thanks to the ‘butterfly effect’ system the game uses.
All positive stuff, and sounding great. It appears to be getting a great reaction. All sounds promising. One game I’ll be looking forward to.