30.05.2024

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre REVIEW

A fertile ground for many outstanding masters of horror were the 1970s, defining the vector for the further development of the genre, which most modern creators instinctively adhere to. “The Evil Dead,” “Alien,” “Halloween,” “Exorcising the Devil,” and of course the brutal, fear- and disgust-inducing story released in 1974 under the title “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.”

The franchise has about nine thematic films, most of which are quite mediocre. The top of the series is invariably headed by the original, the very first and the oldest movie directed by Tobe Hooper. It was on this picture that the developers of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre were oriented.

  • Developer: Sumo Digital
  • Publisher: Gun Interactive
  • Release date: August 18, 2023

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre offers to play bloody catch-up in the format of asymmetrical horror – four survivors against three maniacs. Regardless of the level, each of the guys starts the session in the basement, suspended by their feet from the ceiling. You have to complete a mini-game to free yourself. This can be done quickly and noisily, giving away your location to members of the family, or slowly but silently to then sneakily proceed to find the exit. The first option is strongly discouraged, as Bubba also starts in the basement and has a saw.

As in Dead by Daylight, survivors can move in a crawl, walk and run, as well as crawl through gaps, tumble over low, marker-marked obstacles, crawl through trapdoors, and hide in suitable places, like that meat cooler where Jerry from the movie found Pam tied up.

All these loopholes not only allow the guys to silently use alternative ways to various rooms and sectors of the map, but also help to buy a little time during the pursuit, because the maniac is often forced to hastily look for a way around to continue the chase, and not everyone can hurt during the animation.

To get to the surface, the survivors must find boxes with lock picks, also pass a mini-game to open them, risking to give themselves away by an awkward gesture, and then crack one of several doors, finding it in the labyrinth of the basement. In addition to lockpicks, you’ll find medicines and piles of bones in the basement and levels. From them you can get a sharp weapon, which has several uses.

Those who are lucky enough to get out of the basement will have to find one of the four exits, but finding it doesn’t mean getting out. One of the gates is powered and you must first find and disconnect its source, the water pump is responsible for the locking mechanism of the others, but to turn it on, you need to find a faucet somewhere on the level.

The situation is complicated by locked doors and passageways, traps, cannibal family members prowling around, and the time of day – you can be thrown on one of the levels deep in the night, and the nights in Texas are dark. An alternative to the timer limiting the session time is a creepy grandpa chained to a rocking chair, whom caring grandchildren can feed with human blood extracted from the victims or from special buckets placed around the locations.

Every time the head of the family gets a level after drinking to his heart’s content, a terrible roar is heard and the aura of all the survivors is illuminated. If the Sawyers manage to feed the old man before the survivors escape, they can no longer be called survivors – the cheerful old man will start lighting up the guys permanently and only a miracle will help them win. By the way, the old man can be temporarily stunned with the same sharpened bone – grandpa in a blackout can neither illuminate the players, nor take food.

Unlike Dead by Daylight, in addition to the notorious perks, which we’ll talk about a bit later, in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre not only the maniacs, but also their victims have special abilities. For example, Julie is the fastest of the survivors, which allows the girl to perform distracting maneuvers. Anna is the toughest among the youngsters. The girl is able to minimize incoming damage for a short time, squeezing out an extra chance to escape.

The members of the cannibal family, like the survivors, can interact with some of the items. They each have a bunch of keys, so they are able to unlock and lock doors behind them without hesitation, block loopholes with metal plates, and break mechanisms that their victims try to bring to life in order to escape.

Each of the Sawyers is also unique in their own way. The not-so-diligent Cook has keen hearing and is able to detect a nearby survivor by temporarily illuminating their aura. The old man also carries several locks that he can put on locked doors, creating an additional obstacle for the youngsters.

For participating in sessions, players receive experience points for their account and for their character. The former are used to purchase various perks in the local analog of the bloody web from Dead by Daylight. They are inserted into slots before the session and are mostly various modifiers. In addition, the web sells character points, which, as in role-playing games, can be spent to improve certain attributes of heroes.

In the case of maniacs, this is stamina, which is spent on running and attacking with weapons. If it runs out completely, the killer will stop for a short time to catch his breath. Strength is responsible for the damage that the maniac will inflict on the victim, capacity – for the amount of blood that Sawyer can carry to feed his grandfather.
Survivors have more attributes. In addition to endurance, with the growth of which increases not only the stamina scale, but also the speed of its recovery, there is a health indicator – the higher it is, the more damage the hero will withstand. Strength is responsible for the quality of stun with a bone knife, qualification – for the speed of opening locks, and stealth somehow affects the amount of noise that creates the player while performing various actions.

In addition, by developing beloved characters, the player gradually gains access to related content and new outfits, most of which, so far, are the same costumes made in other color schemes.


The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is definitely worthy of attention of any fan of asymmetrical online horror, even if the original movie passed them by. The game is well put together, the flaws – not fatal, the development system pleases, the starting set of maniacs, survivors and locations – very good. You can see that they were seriously engaged in the project and I want to believe that they will continue to develop it.


PROS

  • Very decent visual style
  • Excellent development system
  • Great starter set of characters
  • Addictive gameplay with nicely implemented mechanics

CONS

  • There are optimization problems
  • Annoying crashes