When a scientist hires you to help them pick up their abandoned expedition into the frozen wastes of the Arctic. You know you’re probably in for a bad time. Yet, still, we take the job. That Which Gave Chase is a short horror adventure that leads you down a disjointed path of confusion and paranoia. Will the promises of great rewards be worth the trip? Let’s be honest. Probably not.
I’ve found myself more interested in horror games recently. Signalis being one such example that I loved. Having said that they aren’t necessarily your traditional horror full of jump scares and other tropes. These are a bit more psychological and verging on the cosmic. Fear of the unknown. A fear of what your companions are really up to. You don’t always fully understand what is going on and I love that.
I don’t trust this place
That Which Gave Chase is another great example. This short adventure only lasts around 1 hour. During that time you will be placing your trust in this scientist hoping that they aren’t mad or leading you towards doom.
With sudden jump cuts from scene to scene you can rarely place the time of day or how long you’ve been out on these frozen plains. It builds a sense of distrust not just in your companion, but also in your surroundings. With frozen fog limiting your view it’s hard to tell what is around the next corner. But it is still your job to lead the dog sled and this scientist further into the Arctic.
Not knowing the true intentions of your expedition sets a knot in your stomach. As you stumble upon evidence of the previous expedition things don’t get any better. Are you here for genuine reasons or is this the folly of a madman? From the very moment you set off on your sled you you are at the mercy of the environment hoping things turn out ok.
Give me more short games
Being able to play through the game in one comfortable sitting was a delight. Nothing feels dragged out or bloated for the sake of it. Yes, you might still have questions come the end of your journey. However, I like that. I like that we aren’t drip-fed every little piece of exposition to make absolutely sure we know all the ins and outs. I enjoy feeling a little confused throughout. The sense of exposure and vulnerability as you explore is built upon by the questions that remain when you reach the end.
If you want to try and understand more or explore a little more in the environment you can quickly and easily do it all again. It’s just another hour. Far too many games feel overly long without adding any real substance. That Which Gave Chase is very much on the short side of short. But I love that and I wish more games were comfortable doing that.
Give it a try
I know some people really don’t like spending money on something that will only last an hour or two. They feel it’s not worth it. To a point, I can understand that. That being said if you enjoy offbeat horror. If you enjoy stories that don’t reveal minor detail. And if you like very cool eery vibes with awesome retro graphics That Which Gave Chase is well worth the less than £5 fee.