The Swedish developer Shining Gate Software brings its point-and-click game Decay: The Mare for Xbox One, an adventure where you play as Sam, a patient from an institution called “Reaching Dreams” who’s trying to get rid of drugs and change his life for good! But in his first night at this new home, he’ll discover there’s something very odd about this place. Unable to distinguish reality from his imagination, guide Sam throughout the corridors ofhis nightmare and search for a way out of this building, before it’s too late. But first, read what we thought about this game in this review.
- The atmosphere of the game is great! Stuck in this nightmare, you will find yourself exploring dark rooms, solving puzzles and collecting items, while the story of the games slowly unfolds. Always cautious and alert, never at-ease while theses creepy shadowsthat show up at corners and windows.
- Thanks to the mysterious music in the background, the gory pictures from load screens and surroundings, you’re always going to be tense and uncomfortable, waiting for the next jumpscare that will make scream and jump from your chair (seriously!). But the game doesn’t abuse this feature, making them predictable: it wisely gives time for you to become confident and fearless again before throwing some new surprises at your face.
- The gameplay is very simple, like most of point and click games: you control a cursor and point on specific things in the levels for your character to investigate or interact. You collect items, some to solve puzzles and others that help the storytelling. In each room, you see on the right side of the screen arrows representing what side you can walk to using the digital pad. With the left analog stick, you control the cursor. With A button you interact with objects, while Y brings up your inventory and B cancel actions. And that’s basically all you need to explore the game.
- The story of the game is basic but okay. I couldn’t feel engaged by it or curious about its conclusion until the third part of the game. But once it hooks you up, you’re going to play it nonstop until it’s finished. And you have two different conclusions for it, giving a small replay value for it.
- Sometimes I got stuck in the game, as it usually happens in this kind of game. But I wasn’t stuck in puzzles. I was stuck because I didn’t know where to go or what to do next. It’s good cause it forces you to explore more of the game, but some players may find it stressful not to know what they need to do. Keep it in mind that you will need to explore every room more than once to accomplish this game.
- I understand the game may be a port from its PC version from 2015, but the graphics of the game are very weak and don’t use any of Xbox One power. During many times (specially on episode 3), I felt like playing a game from PS2 by its low resolution, bad quality animations sequences and overall textures. And it fells strange because, in some other rooms, graphics, although simple, were much better. And I’m a gamer who don’t care about graphics at all.
- In the few times you hear someone talking in the game or the game reading a document, you have a voice acting that could be much better. Especially when the actor tries to put too much emotion in what he’s reading or to over-interpret a story.
- Game’s a little too short. You can finish all three episodes of the story in one hour each (add one more hour if you want to see both endings). Or even less time, if you don’t get stuck as I did several times or don’t mind about collectibles (although they’re needed for achievements, if you’re aiming for Gamerscore).
Decay: The Mare is a good game. A horror point-and-click adventure that’ll make you jump from your seat. It isn’t a top-notch game when you think about graphics, but its atmosphere and music can deliver a satisfactory experience. Play it at night, play it at dark and play it alone to maximize the effects of the many scary moments of the game. And remember never to use any kind of drugs or you could end up in the same mess Sam is in this game.