Frictional Games wants to redefine the horror genre

Some horror enthusiasts out there may have played the Penumbra series on PC from Swedish developer Frictional Games. Penumbra focused on physics, ambiance and puzzle solving to get the right mood, and was received rather well by the critics. Frictional Games just sent the news that they’re currently busy creating their next horror title. The game is currently untitled and will here be referred to as the new game.

The new game is set in the late 18th century and will take players on a journey through both dark caverns and the dark corners of the mind. With a studio of only four in-house designers, Frictional Games’ primary objective is to deliver an atmosphere that’s unprecedentedly scary.

“There are plenty of ideas that we never realized in the Penumbra games. We think it is possible to go a lot further in terms of evoking unsettling feelings and a sense of dread in the player”, says co-founder and sound designer Jens Nilsson.

Don’t worry, they’re also working hard on building an engine to support their intentions. “We intend to give players a lot of freedom in our upcoming game”, explains Thomas Grip, co-founder and lead programmer at Frictional Games. “Instead of following a laid out route we want players to choose for themselves how they want to progress and how deep they want explore various aspects of the game world”.

Apparently, the new game will feature “a multitude of new ways to tell a story” and “a truly engaging and unique experience.” Doesn’t sound too bad, does it? Let’s hope they don’t exaggerate the freedom though. A claustrophobic setting is scary, and knowing that you have to do some specific things to make progress intensifies that. An “illusion of freedom” in a linear world might perhaps be the way to do it?

Neither a release date or which platforms the next game will be released on has yet been confirmed.