• Shannon Velazquez

THE QUARRY is Supermassive Games Most Ambitious Project Yet

Summer camp is over, and now the horrifying fun begins.

Laura explores in the Prologue of THE QUARRY, Supermassive Games latest horror cinematic game published by 2K.
Courtesy of 2K

Supermassive Games has an exceptional track record for narrative-based storytelling. Paying homage to iconic slashers like Scream (1996), Friday The 13th (1980), Evil Dead (1981), and A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). THE QUARRY is shaping up to be the studio's most ambitious and satisfying choice-based narrative gaming experience yet. It boasts a phenomenal cast that includes Chris (David Arquette), Abigail (Ariel Winter), Jedediah (Lance Henriksen), Constance (Lin Shaye), and cult favorite Ted Raimi.

Matt Purslow got his hands on an exclusive preview of the game and had a lot to call out about the game mechanics. The most intriguing is that the game can switch to different play styles depending on the player's preference. There are the standard quick time events that are common in narrative-based games and a third-person shooting action style that looks like a throwback to Resident Evil 4 (2005). There is even the ability to essentially turn off all the toggles and let the game run on Movie Mode. “You can pick a style,” explained director Will Byles to IGN. “You can have an ‘everybody lives’ movie, you can have an ‘everybody dies’ movie. Or you can have my favorite one, which is the ‘gore fest’ movie.” THE QUARRY is a spiritual successor to epic slasher Until Dawn (2015).

The studio has partnered with Digital Domain who are experts in-game cinematics. Taking the chiaroscuro technique of using high-contrast lighting using a key light as the sole light source to darken backgrounds while keeping the subject sharply lit, providing additional tension. At no point are we meant to feel safe and it looks astounding. I believe the two studios have created some of the most beautiful and realistic in-game facial features since Detroit: Become Human (2018). The game takes place at Hackett’s Quarry Summer Camp, which looks and feels very much like Camp Crystal Lake from Friday the 13th.

Boasting a ten-hour campaign per character, players will take control of nine different teenage camp counselors as they fend off death. With 186 unique endings, there are plenty of ways to get picked off by the end of the game. This allows players to encounter various dangers from beasts to the supernatural. Several walkthroughs of the game's opening act hint that a multitude of baddies are out to get us from spirits to creepy children. THE QUARRY is a cinematic universe filled with horror tropes. A first look gameplay trailer of the first 30-minutes of the game was released with IGN’s exclusive coverage.

In typical narrative-based storytelling, a player's choice moves the story along while also dictating what kind of obstacles they’ll encounter. Characters will remember every flirtation, lie, and action as it relates to the mystery surrounding the camp. Certain events lock the game in place stating that the “Path Chosen” is set as the screen shakes with an old-school VHS effect. All of the playable characters have their own unique choices to make. No two playthroughs will be the same, helping to drive extensive replayability. Deciding who lives and dies isn’t just a tagline. It's how Byles, wants players to explore. He recently sat down with IGN for an interview and stated, “With a horror like this, my personal favorite way through it is that a fair few people die quite horribly. But you can also play it right through and you can have everyone live. It depends on what you want to play.”

An interesting extension of and within the game is the “Bizarre Yet Bonafide Podcast”. A six-part limited series hosted by professional paranormal investigators Grave and Anton. This adds depth to some of the lore players will experience and it's actually quite entertaining. The first three episodes are live right now and can be accessed on iTunes, Spotify, and YouTube. The episodes are exceptionally well done and highlight just how much care and attention to detail Supermassive Games has taken with this project. The podcast can and will change depending on which of the 186 endings players' decisions give them.

Pre-orders are available and include some nifty bonus content. All pre-orders come with the Horror History Visual Filter Pack. This perk allows players to change the cinematic style of the game to one of three classic horror filmmaking styles: Indie Horror, ‘80s Horror, and Black-and-White Classic Horror. The Deluxe Edition comes with the aforementioned pack along with Gorefest Movie Mode for that horror fans who like it bloody and want more dismemberment. It also includes the ‘80’s inspired costume theme pack for the counselors and the Death Rewind Instant Access. A bonus feature that unlocks after the first playthrough is available with every purchase and a retry mechanic that allows players to reverse a playable character's death up to three times. The entire Slay Team can't wait to play!

THE QUARRY is confirmed to release on June 10, 2022, on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series XIS, Xbox One, and Steam.