Monstrum is a horror game in Early Access format. The title takes the essence of the classical Slender, and puts it in a boat full of monsters. What are the main strengths? Randomly generated levels, permanent death and an original atmosphere. We attempt to describe what Monstrum's pre-release version offers.
Escape the boat!
The game begins with your awakening. You find yourself lost in the depths of a ship which is apparently abandoned on the sea. What are you doing here? Were are the others? The only thing clear is that you must escape the ship using one of three possible routes. The bad news is you're not alone: in the Early Access version of Monstrum two very tenacious monsters hunt for you.
The first monster looks like the Big Daddy in the BioShock series: he is a walking wardrobe whose eyes emit a mysterious light. If you meet it in the boat's interior corridors, it will hunt you relentlessly, breaking doors to reach you if necessary. The second monster reminds me of the Lickers of Resident Evil: walking on all fours on the floor and usually hang around outside of the deck.
If one of these monsters catches you, you're dead. And, as you can not save the game, you just have to start from the beginning. Therefore chases in Monstrum are deliciously stressful. But the tension is always present, even when everything seems to be calm. Sharpen your senses and hear the footsteps of the approaching monsters...
Each death brings a lesson. Gradually you will learn to put the safety lock on the door, and hide under beds or throw objects to lure enemies away. Your mission is to escape the ship Monstrum. In the Early Access version there are three different options. The first challenge is to find them. The second, the longest, is figuring out how to "utilize" these escape routes. You must search the boat for suitable objects. For example, energy restoring fuses.
Once you've adapted to Monstrum, a game can last between one and two hours. Thus the flight never gets old and the inability to save the progress does not become a nuisance.
To extend its play time Monstrum needs to radically change the boat structure in each game. The only change in this version is the location of objects and some other rooms. But everything else remains the same so that after a few games the feeling of being in a maze at the sea is lost.
A setting that maintains tension
The setting of Monstrum is grim and original. The play style changes on the boat and the setting maintains a touch of suspense. It is inevitable to feel anxiety when you descend more and more into the darkness of the ship. And surely you get scared when you hear the pipes, thinking that it is a monster lurking.
Monsters have a design between enigmatic and disturbing, but the graphics are unsatisfactory. As throughout the ship in general. We understand that Monstrum wants to be accessible to all potential computers, but more defined textures will not hurt anyone.
In Monstrum the keyboard is used for commands. All actions (hiding under the bed, throwing an object...) are carried out with a few commands. Also, if you have forgotten controls, at the start of the game it always provides a quick reminder.
Is Monstrum worth it?
Would you recommend trying Monstrum in Early Access? The game is now "complete", so to speak. You can now complete it perfectly. The final version will include a third monster and another area as big news. So if it caught your attention what you just read, that means you would enjoy Monstrum seamlessly in its current state.
If you want to feel stress and anxiety while being chased by monsters, you'll love Monstrum. Just keep in mind that the fun will not last long because the ship's structure is virtually unchanged and you maybe disappointed if you expect a graphical marvel.