Mixed reviews trickle in for Scorn upon release
Scorn is a survival horror adventure game released on the 14th of October 2022, The game developed by Ebb Software takes you on a journey through a gory hellscape littered with flesh and marrow picking inspiration from the mind of H.R Giger, a Swiss artist. The game draws heavily from his art style which is known as “Biomechanical art”, this is an art style that blends the human anatomy with machines to ultimately deliver an unnerving yet interesting sight.
The biggest drawing point for most people leading to the release of the game was its art direction and how the choice of style would complement other aspects of the game. Unfortunately, though based on numerous reviews from other media outlets the game’s strongest point turned out to be its dazzlingly macabre design and superb soundtrack, not its gameplay.
No handholding to be found as the game lets you fend for yourself from the get-go, there’s no maps, no compasses just instinct and a level curiosity to keep you going, going where? we don’t know. You play as a distorted zombie like creature who appears to be turned inside out from the looks of things, which is fitting as nothing in this game world is remotely normal. Explore the world solving moderately challenging puzzles as you go along. Text and dialogue boxes are also non-existent so you will have to spend a moderate amount of time gazing at unsettling images keenly to get an idea of your objectives and what exactly you should be doing.
Combat is where the game falls short with complaints streaming in about how slow the strafe movement is, how enemies almost never miss from ranged attacks and how hitboxes aren’t accurate to the positioning of the aim reticle. Action sequences would get so frustrating some reviewers would opt to avoiding them at all costs, gunning it in hopes of getting to the next checkpoint without having to deal with enemies, which sucks all the fun out of combat. This however shouldn’t be a huge deterrent from anyone considering picking up the game as apparently most of the combat happens in only one of the five chapters of the game.
Overall Scorn as a game suffers from a style over substance approach with much of the experience feeling uneven hampering it from being an all-round fun gaming experience. Ebb Software managed to create a mesmerizingly detailed world with an atmosphere that can’t just be dumbed down as pointless gore for the sake of gore, the pulsating world, though empty, clearly had a set vision that was executed quite well. The game takes roughly 7 to 8 hours to complete and can be finished in one sitting, this can be seen as either a positive or a negative depending on the player as some say it’s fitting as the game doesn’t overstay its welcome while others are less then pleased.
Scorn released on October 14th 2022, and is playable on Xbox Series X, Series S, and Windows PC.