You wouldn’t find us playing three-quarters of the games coming out on Game Pass today. At least, not without a sturdy drink and the lights turned up.
That’s because we’re graced with the macabre presence of Soma (Cloud, Console and PC), Amnesia: Collection (Cloud, Console and PC), Amnesia: Rebirth (Cloud, Console and PC), as well as Phantom Abyss – Game Preview (Cloud, PC and Xbox Series X|S).
Today’s games have been mostly brought to you by Frictional Games. The Swedish game’s collective have been quietly churning out some of the most atmospheric, immersive and downright chilling games for the Xbox, and we effectively get their back catalogue to play for free (well, for the price of the subscription).
Our pick is Soma. It’s a first-person horror game, much like the Amnesia series, but set in a remote, underwater research facility. You play Simon Jarrett, who – poor guy – has only just been involved in a car accident. He blacks out during the operation, only to find himself at the bottom of the ocean. A problem that plagues us all. So, off he goes, trying to work out what brought him here, as well as find out what the Evans is going on in this pocket hellhole. It’s a touch more accessible, a little less scary, and involves fewer inventory shenanigans than the Amnesia series, so it might be a good entry point.
That’s not to say that Frictional’s early games are worth avoiding. We just think you should work up to them, as they provide some of the most intense moments in video game history. Amnesia: Collection is a Frankenstein’s Monster composed of Amnesia: The Dark Descent, its Justine DLC, and Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs. Meanwhile, Amnesia: Rebirth serves as the threequel for the series, released in 2020. We gave Amnesia: Collection a ⅘ in review, saying “you probably won’t sleep again. Ever”, which is just about the creepiest recommendation we’ve ever given.
Phantom Abyss may have ‘Phantom’ in the title, but in comparison to the other releases today, it’s a cuddly puppy. This is tagged as a ‘massive asynchronous multiplayer game’, which ties our heads in knots, but the concept is relatively simple: what if you were Indiana Jones or Lara Croft, and you were tossed into a temple that was procedurally generated? You dodge traps, find secret rooms and get your grubby mitts on treasure that has all been placed randomly. But what makes us excited about this one is that the misadventures of other players can be seen in the form of ghosts and messages, leaving a grisly warning of the threats to come.
October still has some life in it. Still to come on Game Pass are Persona 5 Royal (Cloud, Console and PC) on October 25th, and Frog Detective: The Entire Mystery (PC), Gunfire Reborn (Console) and Signalis (Cloud, Console and PC) on October 27th.
Some games abscond on October 31st. They are Alan Wake: American Nightmare (Console and PC), Backbone (Cloud, Console, and PC), Bassmaster Fishing 2022 (Cloud, Console, and PC), Nongunz: Doppelganger Edition (Cloud, Console, and PC), Project Wingman (Cloud, Console, and PC), Second Extinction (Cloud, Console, and PC), Sniper Elite 4 (Console and Cloud) and The Forgotten City (Cloud, Console, and PC).
We want to hear stories of how much these Amnesia games ruined you. Let us know in the comments and on our social media channels.