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July 2022

The Quarry

Platform(s): PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X
Genre: Action/Adventure
Publisher: 2K Games
Developer: Supermassive Games
Release Date: June 10, 2022


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PS5/PS4/XSX/XOne/PC Preview - 'The Quarry'

by Chris "Atom" DeAngelus on May 26, 2022 @ 6:00 a.m. PDT

The Quarry is an all-new teen-horror narrative game where your every choice, big or small, shapes your story and determines who lives to tell the tale.

Pre-order The Quarry

Supermassive Games has done a few titles, but none stand out as much as its horror movie games. The "movie" part is important because ever since Until Dawn, the developer has been attempting to perfect the replayable movie-game, where your choices change and impact who lives, who dies, and how the story ends. The Quarry is its latest attempt, and after the more unusual ideas in the last three games, the team has decided to go in the other direction and make The Most Horror Movie game that it could.

The Quarry, as you may gather, is set at a summer camp called Hackett's Quarry. Summer has just ended, and the kids have gone home, leaving their attractive early-20-something counselors all on their lonesome. Of course, they promptly get down to all sorts of mischief, but things get strange rather quick. The only car that's big enough to carry all the counselors breaks down, and the panicked camp leader demands everyone stay inside while he drives to get help. They don't listen, and they discover that Hackett's Quarry houses many different dangers that threaten to turn them into the latest entries on a Dead Meat kill count.

The Quarry feels like it's going for more star power than the previous game. Almost every character is played by an established actor, a number of whom are fairly recognizable. David Arquette plays the head counselor, Chris. Lance Hendrickson plays a mysterious creepy old man who hangs out in the woods. The counselors are a veritable who's who of "I kind of recognize that person," ranging from Detective Pikachu's Justice Smith to The Orville's Halston Sage. This might sound like a criticism, but it really isn't. The star power is exactly what I would expect from a horror movie of this style, and it maintains the feeling that you're "watching" a fun, B-grade horror movie on Netflix.

We had the chance to play through a few early parts of the game. The first and most obvious thing is that The Quarry has a whole lot in common with Until Dawn and Supermassive's other movie-as-games titles. You have a full cast of characters that you swap between, making choices and completing events that alter later events in the story. This includes both simple dialogue choices and more complex quick time events (QTEs). If you've played the developer's other games, you have a good idea of what to expect.

The Quarry seems to have more polish than The Dark Pictures Anthology games, clearly making use of what the team has learned to make the game more accessible. Part of this is an ever-increasing version of co-op. There will be a ton of different ways to play the game, including couch co-op, online co-op, or a Movie mode that lets you watch the game as if it were a movie. On the other hand, the game also offers a variety of options to make it easier, including a ton of helpful accessibility options and a Death Rewind mode that provides the option to undo deaths. (The mode is locked until you finish the game, but preorders will have it unlocked by default.)

Our playthrough put us through a few different sections of the game. The first involved the counselors getting together to have one last party before they leave. This included a quick shooting challenge, which introduced gunplay that requires more precision aiming than in prior offerings, and a game of Truth or Dare that reveals a lot about the various characters. They all fall comfortably into horror stereotypes, including the quiet girl, the loudmouth joker, the teasing flirt, and so on. As you can imagine, the Truth and Dare game sparks emotions, and several of the counselors take off on their own.

The second part gives us a clear idea of one of the many horrors that infest the camp. A pair of unlucky counselors are beset by slimy creatures that savagely assault them. This demands timed button presses to avoid a violent death, as well as a fate-changing choice where one may or may not leave the other for dead; that choice has consequences later on. At the same time, another pair of counselors goes for a late-night naked swim only to find that something pretty foul lurks beneath the waters.

The final segment involves a race against time to rescue one of the missing counselors, a tense race through the forest that leads to a gunpoint standoff with a mysterious man who seems to be in the middle of carting off an unlucky victim. Depending on the choices you make here, it's clear that one or more characters might not survive, but I was able to drive off the would-be kidnapper and (hopefully) rescue my friends.

The Quarry feels very familiar for the Supermassive franchise, but not in a bad way. The whole-hearted dive into a slasher movie gives the game its own identity more so than any of its games since Until Dawn. Yeah, a group of horny counselors being stalked and hunted through a summer camp might be cliché, but it can still be exciting. As always, the interactive elements add more flavor to what might be a simple movie. I'm looking forward to seeing the full version when it hits for PC, PlayStation and Xbox in June 2022.

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