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The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil in Me Review (PS5)

The Devil in Me is the final chapter in the first season of Supermassive Game’s Dark Pictures Anthology. Whilst it clearly takes inspiration from some iconic pieces of horror media like The Shining and the Saw franchise, The Devil in Me unfortunately fails to match the level of quality of those inspirations. Instead, what it delivers is a sluggish drag of an experience which fails to deliver any real tension.

The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil in Me releases on November 18th 2022 on PC, Playstation and Xbox consoles.

Despite the criticism that entries in this series have received before in the same vein, The Devil in Me commits the cardinal sin of being yet another Dark Pictures Anthology game which takes far too long to get into the action. The first two hours of this game is almost completely absent of scares and contains some of the most monotonous gameplay sequences imaginable.

A major oversight present in this game and in all of the other Dark Pictures Anthology games so far is the inability to skip over the mandatory tutorial sequence contained at the beginning of the game. No matter how many times you have done it in the past, The Devil in Me will still take its sweet time explaining to you one of the most simple control systems in all of gaming in the most patronising and boring way possible.

Also read: 5 Things That The Devil in Me Can Learn From Other Games in the Dark Pictures Anthology

A function should have been included meaning that; if a save file is detected from any other Dark Pictures game, then the tutorial prompts are automatically skipped. Failing that, even a manual option to skip the tutorial prompts would suffice and would save a lot of wasted time at the beginning of the game.

Another thing which was immediately off-putting in the game’s intro was the clear lack of polish present in the game. Since Sony broke off their partnership with Supermassive following the disaster that was Bravo Team, the studio’s games have progressively felt less and less premium as time goes on.

Anyone remember this mess?
Anyone remember this mess?

Whilst this lack of polish has been somewhat noticeable within the other titles in the Dark Pictures Anthology, it is by far the most noticeable in The Devil in Me. Admittedly, the worst looking-character models are only present within the first 20 minutes of the game, after which time we switch to the main cast who are modelled to a higher standard.

With that said though, if you are going to open your game with a prologue sequence, it should be used to impress players from the get-go and be somewhat representative of the rest of the game which follows. Front-loading your game with ugly character models and stiff animations does not seem like a good way to make a positive first impression on your audience.

Also read: The Chant Review – A Valiant Attempt (PS5)

Playing through the intro sequence of The Devil in Me with the shabby character models used in this title makes it hard to believe that this is the same team responsible for creating the exquisite-looking character models in Until Dawn, which is also a game from seven years ago!

Although the core cast may be a bit easier on the eyes than the lifeless monstrosities that Supermassive attempt to pass off as human beings during the The Devil in Me’s intro, unfortunately they are a group of unlikable eejits. I never felt a real connection to any of them during my playthrough, nor did I particularly feel anything as I watched them die off one by one.

You will likely want to kill off this insufferable lot as soon as possible.
You will likely want to kill off this insufferable lot as soon as possible.

The previous respective casts in Dark Pictures Anthology games have been accused of blending together due to them feeling bland and unremarkable. The Devil in Me attempts to differentiate its characters by assigning each of them into a filmmaking role. This is because the team are summoned to a replica of H.H Holmes’ murder castle to film their season finale.

The animations in Supermassive games have always been slightly awkward, but it has always been forgiven due to the limited movement offered in their titles. The Devil in Me attempts to introduce more movement options, such as climbing and balancing on narrow beams. As a result of this, the stiffness of the animations is made more obvious due to the addition of increased movement options during these segments.

Also read: The Evil Dead Review – Six Months on and it’s Still ‘Groovy’ (PS5)

The Devil in Me is not one of the worst games that I have played this year, however it is one of the worst Dark Pictures Anthology games released thus far. This is a shame given that this was supposed to be the, “epic finale,” to the anthology’s first season. If you are a fan of the other Dark Pictures games then you should probably play this one, but if not then I cannot recommend it.

4/10

The Dark Pictures Anthology: The Devil in Me was reviewed on PS5 with a code provided by Bandai Namco.

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Written by Daniel Boyd

Daniel is a 27-year-old writer from Glasgow. He graduated from university with an honours degree in 3D Animation, before pivoting to pursue his love for critical writing. He has also written freelance pieces for other sites such as KeenGamer.com and The Big Glasgow Comic Page. He loves movies, video games and comic books.