Horror games can be hit and miss. So some developers get it right while others think that in your face jump scares is what makes a good horror game. However, for me, its atmosphere, the environment and what’s stalking you. “White Day” has been around for a while now and has quite a following. Even so, this Korean horror game (by developer Sonnori) never hit my radar. Furthermore, this is, in fact, a remake of the cult classic (by the same developer). So they have refined the visuals and changed some of the game’s puzzles, so there’s even new stuff for older players to discover.
School, for the most part sucks. I hated maths, I wasn’t much into science and P.E well let’s just say I never came first. However, I’d do all that again rather than spend one bloody night in this Korean nightmare fueled school. As it’s packed with a psychopathic janitor, ghoulies, and a bunch of other school students with reasons that don’t quite make much sense as to why they’re there. Anyways, as you walk through the school corridors, you slowly piece together what’s going on. You start to find that maybe there’s more to the young lady whom your returning her diary to. There are ghost stories that you can collect while you play and reading them is as fun as a creepy-pasta page.
Similar to games like “Outlast” you can’t fight back in “WhiteDay”, because there are no guns or weapons to be found in the game. So you can only run and hide from the irate Janitor (“if” he catches you, then he will beat you to death with a baseball bat!). Some puzzles you can use your wits to win, whether it’s using weed killer or placing sound speakers to shatter glass. There’s a metric tonne of collectables, whether it’s ghost stories, hints or more lore about the school, there’s plenty to find. At times, detective work is needed to solve puzzles, for a while I was completely stumped on where to go, as unknowing to me a key code was on the back of a particular item. It’s very clever and in turn made me feel stupid, but it makes a nice change for a game to make you use your brain.
There’s also a “Resident Evil” style save mechanic where you use felt-tip pens to mark your progress, luckily these areas are frequent, but they are never safe. As the Janitor is never too far away from your current location, because his patrolling the school looking for pesky students (students like you!). Furthermore, there are some challenges that must be completed in an allotted time which ups the tension as you run from place to place trying to solve puzzles (do you remember the janitor part that I mentioned earlier? Well, that’s one of the reasons why there is a tension in “Whiteday”).
The game area is also a nice size, as it opens up later on with lots of rooms to explore. You might also wonder how scary “Whiteday” is? Well, to be fair it does a good job of keeping you on edge. However, the jump scares don’t seem to be constant, in fact, the sound design does much of the work here. So whether it’s footsteps above your head or the wind rattling the windows, I didn’t find myself jumping out my skin, just spooked every now and then.
Even so, “White Day” isn’t without its issues, while (yes, this is a remake of a game on PS4) it looks pretty dated when compared with the many other horror games available. The one thing that will stump you in this game are the puzzles, while some are clever, others are near impossible. For example, one of the puzzles requires you to know Chinese subtraction. So I literally had no idea what the hell I was supposed to do…Thankfully enough though, there was a guide available. However, it only took me so far because the puzzles are never the same each time you play, number sequences change keeping you guessing, which is great because it makes replaying fun, but that is of course if you can solve the puzzles in the first place.
Now, don’t get me wrong, “White Day” is a good game. However, some of the puzzles are just a tad too difficult. Furthermore, you will be googling on how to solve the puzzles, then get frustrated because it’s hard to get a direct answer as puzzles differ each time you play, resorting to a possible rage quit. The scares are in the game’s atmosphere and the many ghost stories you discover keep you on the edge. You are even rewarded with more spooks if you play on a harder difficulty too and with multiple endings to discover, and this is certainly worth the effort. Especially if you missed this on its previous releases.
+ Spooky Scary Ghosts
+ Plenty of reasons to replay
+ Clever puzzles
– Some puzzles too clever for their own good
– Visuals are quite dated
– Not that scary.
Replay value: 5/5
Sonnori’s “Whiteday” is a rather pleasant horror/adventure/puzzle romp through a spooky school with some cunning puzzles! However, sadly enough, the game is far from flawless. Even so, it’s still worth of a try if you’re into horror games, because “Whiteday” does indeed got more positive aspects to offer than negative ones.
Title: White Day: A Labyrinth named School
Release date: 2017-08-09
Difficulty: Medium to I don’t know Chinese, I’m stuck
Spent time: +8 hours
Average grade internationally: NA% Gamerankings.com
PEGI age rating: 18
Robin Ek – Editor
The review code was provided by PQUBE.
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