We’ve watched enough horror movies to know that when you combine summer camp, a pack of hormone riddled teenagers, and a Reality Show’s worth of drama, that this is going to be a story that’s headed in a direction that leads to a whole lot more than just a few broken hearts. So, when we booted up The Quarry recently, we already had a pretty good idea about what we were going to be in for. However, being no stranger to Supermassive’s style of tale telling, our expectations remained high and we were ready for some twists and turns. But, did this classic horror-themed whodunnit leave us ready for a second date? Or just plain leave us on read?
We’ve played Supermassive’s other horror themed narratives before and enjoyed them to varying degrees. The Quarry seemed par for the course except this time there were some pretty famous faces making appearances that helped peak our interest even further. I mean Ted Raimi? As avid Evil Dead/Army of Darkness fans, sign us all the way up. The only thing that held us back this long from playing it was the price. While these games are certainly much longer and much more involved than any movie, or even mini-series, it was a hard sell at a $60 price tag. And so we decided to wait for a sale.
We did test out a demo a few months ago before playing the full game and upon experiencing it on the PS5 it definitely shines on higher powered consoles. It would have certainly been playable mind you on the Xbox One but the PS5 just made everything smooth as butter and that really can only enhance your experience. It’s much easier to feel immersed in a story when you don’t have obnoxiously long load times or stuttering graphics after all. It’s an obvious truth I suppose but something definitely worth keeping in mind just the same.
As with Supermassive’s other choose-your-own-adventure style games the story is what glues the whole thing together. You’ve gotta have a nice variety of characters that are at least mostly all likable, a thick plot, and a dark shroud of mystery. The Quarry really showed up on all these fronts. I won’t discuss story details so as to avoid any spoilers for those who haven’t played it yet but I will say that all the story bits, regardless of your choices, ended up flowing together nicely. Nothing seemed to be missing or overlooked if you dovetailed your decisions during subsequent playthroughs and the story really did change drastically from one decision to the next. Plus there were tons of little things to discover that you may have missed on your last playthrough that may not necessarily steer the story in a whole new direction but certainly added some interesting contextual details.
We tried the movie mode after finishing the game for the first time and I think it’s a really fun feature if you just want to be able to sit back and enjoy the show. We had fun seeing what decisions they would make that were different from ours and what changes they would cause. Plus you can choose between a few different endings so if there’s one you haven’t seen but don’t feel like figuring out the right dialogue choices this would be a great way to see it for yourself.
It was great to see The Quarry hitting all those right notes where its predecessor games tended to be more hit or miss. The cast was phenomenal, the story was captivating, and your choices truly mattered. Honestly the only complaint that’s worth mentioning is how the harsh lighting could really make for some unfortunate missable moments. The dark scenes were often so dark that you’d hear the scary music prompts but have no idea what you were supposed to have just seen to go with them. Sure you could brighten the contrast in the settings but even the brightest setting sometimes didn’t help enough. It didn’t help that a lot of those dark moments were combined with a camera that was way too close to the character either. Your field of vision was already crazy limited because of the ambient lighting, but now having the character take up most of the camera real estate made exploration frustrating during those parts. Often, we just ended up beelining straight to where we needed to go.
Those few unfortunate dark moments aside, I think the game really shines on all other fronts. It took us about 10-ish hours to get through our first playthrough and maybe a little over half that to get through the movie mode. Other playthroughs would vary as there was less and less need to explore the surroundings and figure out what needed to be done to progress. Replay-ability is high and there’s plenty of different endings to really shake things up each time through. I’m not sure a sequel would be possible or worth it but we’d absolutely be down for more stories of this nature. Sometimes a simple creature feature is all you need to weave a good yarn.
The Quarry from Supermassive Games swept us off our feet and had us ready for a second, and even third date, right out of the gate. The story really hit the nail on the head time and time again, making your choices really matter each time you played. We give it two “When the heck did Ethan Suplee get so jacked!?” thumbs UP.