Geek Preview: ‘Alone in the Dark’ Reimagination Haunts With Foreboding Atmosphere & Star Power

THQ Nordic and Pieces Interactive‘s upcoming reimagination of survival horror royalty, Alone in the Dark, will be unveiling its dark secrets at its spotlight showcase, and our early sneak peek at what’s in store for fans points to something darkly exciting, with Alone in the Dark launching on 25 October, an appropriately spooky month.

When it comes to catching the attention of players, having some star power definitely helps, and actors Jodie Comer and David Harbour are going to be part of the journey back to the haunting Derceto Manor. Their acting chops will come in handy, especially as the game is heavy on the atmosphere beyond its combat and puzzles.

Much like the original, things kick off with Jeremy Hartwood being haunted by the Dark Man. As things unfold, his niece, Comer’s Emily Hartwood arrives with detective Edward Carnby, played by Harbour, to help investigate the mystery at hand of The Hartwood Curse in Alone in the Dark.

“Casting David and Jodie in the lead roles has been a great inspiration for writers and artists alike. First, both of them have a distinctive physicality that helped us get the movement and the cutscenes right and fitting for the characters,” shared Associate Producer, Andreas Schmiedecker.

“Even more importantly, how they chose to act with their faces and voices gave feedback on the development of the characters and allowed the writers to adapt the characters to the actors playing them. So it was an inspiring and beneficial process.”

Having two characters also allows the team to create unique scenarios that are meant for their specific viewpoints, and players will have to choose whose story they want to experience as they boot up Alone in the Dark. As Schmiedecker explained, “from a narrative perspective, it’s very exciting to show how the story plays out differently, depending on who you chose.”

Expect cutscenes that play to the relationship of the characters to the central plot, while there will be “exclusive levels and parts of the mansion depending on your chosen protagonist. Should players go back for another run with a different choice, “there will be slight influences in your game depending on which items you found in your first playthrough.”

When it comes to combat, it is going to be harrowing and tough, with every bullet needing to count. All kinds of horrors await, and we cannot wait to find out just what lurks in the dark. There are obviously going to be puzzles to solve and clues to find as well, and for players worried about getting lost, there are accessibility options to help you along the way.

Of course, bringing back a classic game like Alone in the Dark has its challenges, but it is something the team over at Pieces Interactive have full belief in. With Mikael Hedberg, the writer of horror icons Amnesia: The Dark Descent and SOMA, as part of the process, it didn’t take too long for THQ Nordic to buy into the vision. The developers also consulted with original creator Frédérick Raynal, who made the first game back in 1992, to ensure everything feels authentic and scary.

To help players get into the groove again, there will also be a prologue available now starring Grace Saunders called Grace in the Dark. As the little girl in the Derceto Manor, players will get to experience a taste of the atmosphere and mood of the game and get a glimpse of the story before the main affair. For veteran fans, this demo is a throwback to Jack in the Dark, which was a companion experience to Alone in the Dark 2.

Alone in the Dark 2023

“We always wanted to give players a chance to experience the world of Derceto, the music and atmosphere; and get a glimpse of the story and characters as well before they dive into the full game. However, we didn’t want to spoil anything; create a story that makes sense to take place before the main game; and give the audience a new perspective. So it made a lot of sense to let the players play as Grace and play up a little adventure that leads up to the events of the main story,” added Schmiedecker.

For a franchise that has long been dormant in the horror genre, Alone in the Dark looks prepared to make a splash this October. Powered by the excellent visuals, the acting prowess of Harbour and Comer, and an innate understanding of what makes the Derceto Manor tick, you most certainly don’t want to miss this game.