We take a look at Unholy, the next Silent Hill?


This week we were able to go to the 505 Games offices in Madrid to try out some of the titles they showed at this year’s Gamescom. We were also able to meet a division within 505 Games called Hook, more focused on finding indie promiseswith projects with more modest budgets and with teams of few people.

Some of their PC releases have been on the market for months, such as Madshot o Kingdom of the Dead. Madshot is a curious rogue-lite where we control a being with a face very similar to Cthullu’s and with a great capacity for destruction; With a gameplay that is very reminiscent of what was seen in Dead Cells and a fun cartoon aesthetic, this game is still in early access, but it shows enormous potential. Kingdom of the Dead, for its part, is a first-person shooter in which we will defeat hordes of terrifying enemies with gunshots; The strength of this title lies in its distinctive artistic section, with graphics that seem to be drawn in ink. On the other hand, there is another release scheduled for 2023, and it is Edengate: The Edge of Life; is a narrative adventure with puzzles and exploration in which a scientist wakes up in a world that has completely changed while she was unconscious in the hospital. We will have to unravel the mystery that hides in the city of Edengate.

However, Hook had an ace up his sleeve heading into next year. A mysterious first-person psychological horror project called Unholy. We were able to see a promising gameplay of around 13 minutes in which some of its keys were shown. We will control a mother who has just lost her son; We will start in an old, dirty and decadent post-USSR Eastern European city. In this place we have begun to hear news about the rise of a sect, something that we can check on the posters around our home.

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The game will have a large exploration component, allowing us to take a large number of elements from the scenarios to examine them closely. Once we get upstairs, we seem to see our son running through the halls. We chase him over several floors, but we can’t catch up with him. The environment begins to change around us, at first in a subtle way, darkening and dirtying the walls, and later with apartments that hide grotesque religious-themed images. But we can’t stop; we enter a very dense darkness, only accompanied by the dim light of a flashlight and the disturbing screams and sounds that are heard in the distance. We will also find our son’s slingshot, which will be of paramount importance later.

We arrive at a basement where a ritual seems to have taken place; a disturbing lady tells us that the sect has kidnapped our son, and they have taken him to a place unreachable by traditional methods. The only way to access that reality is through a mysterious mask. Putting on that mask we access a plane superimposed on ours; a much more dangerous one, as we will soon see.

In this reality our son’s slingshot becomes a weapon capable of using emotions as ammunition. This functionality will not only help us to solve different puzzles (very simple, yes, at least the ones seen in the demo) related to the scenario, but also to flee from battles with enemies. The stealthy approach is recommended, since our only chance against the cultists will be to infiltrate or dodge them.

All the members of this sect use masks with a very particular style, very reminiscent of the Alien of HRGiger or the recent Scorn, the work of the artist Tomasz Strzalkowski, artistic director and founder of Duality Games, the studio responsible. We will be able to customize the mask with different elements that we find to modify our style of play. However, there will be places that require us to use specific masks if we want to access. Learning about this sect, its customs and its mythology will be essential to adapt and be able to move forward.

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The graphic section of Unholy promises a lot, displaying a very realistic and dark recreation of the real world, but also a disturbing representation of the other plane. The changes in the environment also look spectacular, and the game boasts an uncomfortable and disconcerting atmosphere thanks to the originality of its mythology added to its different references, such as The Medium or Silent Hill. Some moments of the gameplay were really tense, playing very well with the tension and completely dispensing with jumpscares. The rooms were represented in great detail, with many objects to interact with, giving a very immersive feeling.

Its launch is scheduled for 2023 and what we could see was a Pre-Alpha, but it promises many interesting concepts that, well cohesive, could make Unholy a surprise within the genre. I strongly recommend you take a look at some of his official images (above in the gallery): the designs of his enemies and locations will not leave you indifferent.