Signalis: The Face of Modern Survival Horror

Steam games giveaway 2015controllers that work with steam SIGNALIS gameplay thank you if youve been following my channel for a while you might know Ive been on a bit of an apology tour to put it simply at one point I was guilty of spreading misinformation I had played the numerous titles released by the AAA industry under the supposed Banner of survival horror and found each and every one to be so far from the mark that I eventually lost faith that anyone even knew how to make these games anymore it was almost like the only people who did at one point had exited the industry leaving behind only those who would mimic their work without really understanding how to go about completing such a Herculean task well it turns out I was wrong or I guess you could say I was looking in the wrong place the whole time I was screaming my head off about the death of the genre titles were still being pumped out they were just smaller games made by even smaller Studios it was honestly a little surreal finding out that the Indie Market had unbeknownst to me revived my beloved survival horror right under my nose so I endeavored to go on a bit of a quest to enjoy all of the modern titles in this genre Id been missing out on and in that process came across a demo for signalis a dark Moody and insanely interesting horror game that seemed to check every box Capcom created when popularizing these types of games and now that the full games out weve got one question to answer here does signalus has a finished product live up to all the praise and admiration I gave it sure demo well I think its about time I do exactly that whats up guys Im Jared and this is Avalanche reviews Music Applause Music thank you after first getting my hands on signalus in the form of its free demo I was immediately smitten Not only was it displaying all of the Hallmarks of a great horror title but the developers really seem to understand what made the survival horror genre so great and since we mentioned the devs I was pretty Blown Away to find that signalus was the result of just two peoples hard work a Duo based out of Germany put together every single aspect of this game minus the music and to say thats impressive would be one hell of an understatement I mean seriously I still would have been wowed if I thought a team of 10 to 20 people hammered it out it looks to me like both members of Team Rose engine are illustrators which really shows because this is a game that fully integrates its presentation into the core of its experience its visual style is insanely fresh in the horror space to say the least and its look seems to be driven by theoretical threesome between the movie Alien capcoms Resident Evil and the anime Ergo Proxy all good pulls to be drawing inspiration from in my opinion after getting that that first little peek of what this team could offer in my modern re clone video series I was beyond excited to see this thing hit the market and as luck would have it I wouldnt have to wait very long at all and this is where in the spirit of full disclosure I do want to say that I was provided a pre-release copy of the PC version of signalus by Rose engine themselves I also want to assure you that this was not done to secure a positive review for me and I promise to be my normal absolutely impossible to please self for the duration of this video I however cannot promise you that I wasnt already biased towards this game even before getting early access to it ever since first getting my hands on that demo I have been following this games development like a hawk I even popped into its Japanese distributor playisms booth at Tokyo game show this year just to see if there were any differences between the Japanese and U.S demos sadly I didnt find any but big UPS to the nice guy who broke the rules and let me have two signalus pins instead of one not all heroes wear capes as far as stories concerned signal seems to have a lot of elements that might remind you of other equally awesome properties theres a very clear dreamy almost lynching feel to its events that seems to flirt with a bit of Dune at points but the psychological elements definitely points towards an appreciation of the Silent Hill series throughout the game I was constantly questioning if what I was seeing was actually happening or some kind of a fever dream and to be totally honest with you the jurys still sort of out on that one the developers describe signaluss story as a dream about dreaming and I would say that paints a much better picture of the overall effect this thing had on me better than I could they were also lovecraftian overtones with elements of forbidden knowledge that can have a maddening effect on whoever possesses it and really if your story is combining influences of Lynch and Lovecraft youre probably doing something correct here but enough with the descriptions and comparisons lets start with the stuff I can actually nail down in Signal as you play as elster or at the very least an Ulster unit part of a line of machines made to better The Human Experience by doing manual labor policing administrative work and leading expeditions to other worlds our specific Ulster was on one such Expedition with the goal of finding and identifying new inhabitable Worlds the game starts with elster waking up to the news that her ship at some point had crash landed on a snow-covered planet and As She searches the wreckage she finds her partner is missing after making it out of the ship we follow a trail of wreckage that leads us to some sort of a Mining facility and once inside elster finds the place to be almost abandoned what few people there are to actually talk to who arent people at all but instead replicas like herself and if thats not bad enough they all keep telling her not to go any further it seems like this place might be a little more dangerous than it seemed at first which is really saying something because it is a mining Colony on an ice Planet well this is a horror game so were obviously not going to heed that advice and as we continue to look around we we find scattered documents and first-hand accounts that paint a story of a viral outbreak that is killed off the humans that work here or used to work here the effects it has on the replicas however are a little more gruesome since these guys are essentially robots on the inside they can continue to function even if they get the virus but they are also made up of lab-grown organic components like skin and select organs and those organic Parts as you might imagine are where all the problems lie when infected replica skin will start to develop lesions that soon turn into cancerous growths and eventually their more human parts become corrupted including their mostly organic brains after things get that bad the replica essentially turns into a monstrous form that is subsequently lost its mind these things lash out at anything they could get their hands on and thanks to the more mechanical elements of their makeup keeping them down is not exactly an easy task as elster makes her way further and further into the Work Camp she starts to piece together a rough idea of this series of events that ended in this nasty situation but information on her partner seems to be hard to come by she does however come across a scant few replicas left unscathed by the virus but they offer no real help and in one situation even directly halts her progress now this may sound pretty simple to you and thats because its a summary of the more lets say concrete elements of signaluss story essentially Ive just given you a lot of the major beats but in between these little disparate details lies a lot of cosmic horror imagery and psychological elements that makes me doubt a lot of the events that take place here there are sections where elster will find herself reliving flashbacks to events that never happened to her and after waking up the items gained in that flashback will be in her inventory there is a lot that youll experience here thats going to make you question what you do and do not know about this games story and that seems to be very much an intentional feature as far as the developers pre-release info is concerned now I will admit when someone starts talking about elements like this it is pretty easy to assume this is one of those form over function stories you know the kind that seems to act more as an advertising campaign for its writers esoteric taste in art than a complete tale that the player is supposed to be able to understand well I can assure you that is not the case here which isnt to say this thing is straightforward actually far from it like I said before I spent a good chunk of the game questioning what exactly was going on but rest assured there is one hell of an emotional payoff at the end of this Rabbit Hole much like youre more average more old Silent Hill game theres a story here that can certainly be sped through and still be appreciated to a degree but someone who takes their time and reads into the pages and pages of lore scattered around the game is going to engage with it on a much deeper level for example at one point in the game I kept coming across these top secret documents pertaining to the different replica models they detailed everything from what jobs they were custom built for to how each of their personalities were worked Im not going to ruin any of the deeper stuff for those that want to dig into that information like I did but the tldr here is that Humanity was at a technological level that would allow them to create labor cyborgs I guess but they still couldnt conquer the sheer complexity of the human mind so instead of trying to they just that grew brains and used electronics to alter them and for a very interesting reason each replica in a series will have the same exact personality some are going to be more empathetic and others more prone to anti-social Behavior each one of these Little Manuals included advice on how to keep the replicas functioning well mentally and included steps that could be taken if one started to show signs of any kind of personality degradation and I really mean it when I say that I sat down and read every single one of these it was honestly amazing I couldnt stop reading this stuff and it really didnt have anything to do with the main story it just told me a little bit about the replicas that I was seeing covered in cancerous tumors its sort of like coming across a psychiatrist evaluation of every zombie that you shot in the face that used to be a person in Resident Evil there were tons of little moments like this when signalus without really giving me any of its main story got me even more interested in its world and how it typically operated just from getting my hands on personal logs and records of how the chain of command worked I could see that humans in this world were highly authoritarian and vertically integrated the government assigns jobs to civilians and military service seems to be mandatory this game is just dripping with World building flavor text and I really couldnt love it more aside from the auxiliary stuff though I really found myself engrossed in this story it kept a lot of its bigger story beats close to the chest for a very long time but it has this really interesting silent hill-esque framework as Id be wondering about a specific detail the game would introduce a few more vague ideas to get me interested in so by the time it had revealed whatever I was curious about first I had already formed even more questions honestly I cant wait for the story analysis videos to hit YouTube because like I said I did grasp most of what was going on here but there are the more surreal elements that feel more like a well what do you think they mean kind of deal now to be fair to myself I didnt exactly have infinite time with this one so there are no doubt a few elements that went over my head or some I didnt even notice and at the end I found out theres more than one ending which makes me really excited to jump back in because it gives me another incentive to go in and try to find all that stuff I missed for a guy like me this is a really nice place for a story to be just barely straddling that razor thin line between meaningful storytelling and full-on up to your interpretation Art House dream logic when I finally got to the end of signalus I was sitting here in my room with all the lights off just basking in the reflected glow my monitor cast on the walls and the events I saw really resonated with me its one of those endings that makes you stay silent for a bit and spend a few minutes analyzing all the emotions it just stirred up in you hell the next day I called my wife into the room gave her the cliff notes version of the story and then made her watch the ending just so I wasnt the only one in the house catching feelings over a video game this really is the total package in my mind it has this fully understandable and emotionally deep narrative going on but its all surrounded by these Ethereal Elements like the lovecraftian bordering on Supernatural events and odd imagery used to invoke a very cool effect where you start to feel certain things and youre not exactly sure why its like you dont really understand what youre looking at but without being aware its having some kind of a subconscious effect on you if you held a gun to my head I could probably come up with a few nitpicks here or there but as far as this critique goes the only possible downside I could see a potential player running into is the Slow Burn signal as can be story wise now thats not to say you wont be engaging with the story for long stretches in fact its quite the opposite it throughout my 11 hours with the game there were a refreshingly numerous amount of cut scenes but signal this is the type of game where youre given a lot of disparate story details sometimes out of order and theyre not going to turn into something concrete and tangible until those final pieces fall into place so while you do learn all kinds of stuff about the story youre interacting with youll spend long swaths of the game not really knowing exactly whats going on despite having at least most of what you need to put it all together on the plus side though that aha feeling when things start to finally fall into place in your head its incredibly satisfying besides I get the feeling this was very much done on purpose and you do have to appreciate when a developer risks potential short-term gains for a massive payoff in the end and I think the word payoff is very fitting here because in the end this is what I would call one damn well fashioned game story it weaves together so many differing elements and all of them perfectly combined into a singularly awesome thread MO mostly though I enjoyed the dueling nature of the concrete identifiable story elements sharing equal billing with the more liquid dream logic and jarring psychological stuff its like the perfect Middle Ground between something like Event Horizon and Jacobs Ladder I feel like someone trying to get what they want out of this game could very easily engage with both of these pieces of the hole but someone looking for one or the other is going to find just as much enjoyment its a really awesome little mystery to unravel and the best part is for most of you theres going to be more to uncover after you beat it prompting a second playthrough oh and without spoiling anything I absolutely have to give a nice tilt of the hat to one of the most effective fake outs Ive ever experienced in a video game story I wont say more than that but trust me on this one its genius foreign as far as gameplay is concerned there is a lot to talk about here I mean without me saying much of anything I imagine most people familiar with the survival horror genre have already put together how close this game stays to the accepted pillars of the genres Foundation but just in case that isnt immediately jumping out at you lets dive into why that is indeed the case before we do though weve got to talk about what exactly those two words mean you know the ones Im talking about survival horror is a term that is talked about to no end I mean every article you read or tweet made about an upcoming horror game has got a 50 50 shot at including it but no one seems to be able to actually Define what that classification means or at the very least theyre not able to do so without starting the sentence off with the words it feels like so lets go ahead and burn my comment section down right now and Define exactly what Im talking about here survival horror is an offshoot of the PC Adventure game genre where Loosely defined or subjective elements like isolation and horror meet more concrete gameplay components like a limited inventory incremental exploration centered around backtracking and a liberal use of puzzles blocking forward progress a lot of times these games will use a fixed perspective leaving control of the camera out of the players hands this combined with the often difficult combat and limitations on what the player can carry with them culminate into a sort of amplification of the games horror atmosphere since the only way to alter your view and get a good look at what lies ahead is to push forward into territory youre not quite sure is safe because you cant see it and considering that Encounters in these games can be very taxing on precious limited resources like ammunition or healing items avoiding combat altogether becomes one of the more attractive options now Im sure theres at least some of you out there shaking your head in disagreement and thats 100 fine we can disagree about all kinds of stuff but this isnt necessarily my opinion here Capcom coined the term survive with the release of the first Resident Evil game and if youre going to use that term its always going to refer to the game it was first used to describe and you might argue that genres evolve which they most certainly do but at least in this context Evolution doesnt mean an absence of every single game design principle seen in its first iteration and if it does that means any game made under that umbrella in the past have retroactively had that genre stripped from them now I went on that long diatribe because everything I just mentioned when describing survival horror is present and accounted for here in signalus which at first might be a little hard to believe given its very unique perspective for the genre as you can see signalus uses a not quite top down not quite isometric View and its really easy to think a lot of those elements wont work in this kind of an environment but that is very far from whats going on and while this may not look like the type of camera angle you would get with a pre-rendered background Resident Evil type game this is is still very much a fixed perspective because the player is not able to actively control the camera except through the act of moving their character and like other games in the genre since the developers didnt have to design their levels around a camera that could theoretically be looking at things from a nearly infinite amount of angles they were able to craft these incredibly detailed and believable backdrops now of course moving through those backdrops means possibly encountering resistance in the form of mutated replicas and I can assure you that combat in this game will feel like second nature to fans of Resident Evil or Silent Hill in its default configuration signalus uses a very familiar hold his shoulder button to aim and hit the action button to fire kind of setup but they do have a few little tweaks thrown in here there to keep things fresh since the games viewing angle may make depth perception a little hard when aiming guns have a visible laser sight and you can lock onto enemies which is represented by an on-screen indicator you can move while shooting which is always nice to see but as you might expect with a game like this there is a trade-off there which is the fact that you may not be able to hit what youre aiming at if youre also going on a bit of a backward stroll you can also get a hold of some secondary items that do a lot both in and outside of a fight first youve got the stun prods that you can use to well you know stun your enemies and then theres injectors that will automatically resuscitate you if you happen to die while one of them are equipped then there are the more utility driven ones like a flashlight or an eye replacement thatll let you take pictures of anything on screen let me assure you this is a godsend if you dont happen to have a smartphone near you when trying to remember info necessary for solving a puzzle there are also thermite flares that feed into a very cool little mechanic borrowed from the amazing Resident Evil 1 remake the virus going around infects a replicas organic material including its brain but the more mechanical nature of these things mean that they dont die too easy after putting one of these things down youre only going to have a little while till it gets back up again and its going to take just as many hits to reintroduce to the Grave to keep this from happening you can use these thermite flares since they burn hot enough to completely disable both the organic and metal parts of a replica and as you might have already figured these things come in a very very short supply so obviously youre gonna need to be very selective about when and where you use them I found they worked best in two very specific situations first off if its a route I knew I would need to reach red often or if it was a tight space where dodging attacks would be too hard to chance if these things got back up again I feel like this was a great little addition and outside of the Resident Evil remake and maybe Silent Hill 4. I cant think of too many other games that have used this expel a rare item to permanently get rid of a constant faux type of mechanic getting around this terrifying environment can be handled in the more traditional method of course that being tank controls but given the perspective of the game I oddly enough found your more normal control layout to work a little better and you dont have to say anything because I am also very disappointed to hear myself say that keeping in that same Lane elster here feels pretty responsive and its easy enough to get her to go where you want her to but do keep in mind I really enjoy controlling old Resident Evil titles so there very well may be something wrong with my brain Im also like 85 percent positive that the demo I played before launch had elster running just a little faster than she does here in the final release but I really dont care enough to install it again in check whether or not that was the case though I would have liked to have seen just a little more speed when I held down that run button but I do know any small adjustment on that end but have a supreme effect on the games difficulty throughout my time with the game I did run into a few scenarios where I felt like I took a cheat hit or two and we will get into that but 99 of the time I felt pretty good about my ability to bait enemies to one area of the screen and then Bob and weave my way around them as signalus goes on bad guys become more erratic with their movements and some of the replicas are able to flat out Sprint at you so even when you get good at dodging the game can still throw surprises at you right up to the last boss foreign it seems to me the game was tailor-made to be experienced by someone whos using a controller but at one point the Dual sense Wireless I was using died and I can confirm a mouse and keyboard are going to get the job done just fine as well on a less mechanical level signalus works exactly how a survival horror fan would want it to you explore small portions of a scary ass environment and in doing so collect items and solve puzzles thats going to gradually open up more of the area to be explored which of course means more puzzles items in combat its a great little Loop what I really liked is how the game makes sure that puzzles dont feel too static sure youre going to be looking at something like this a lot but youre also going to need to make sure that you are closely examining key items in your inventory and you can also combine them with other stuff too Ive always really liked it when games include stuff like this my brain is just sort of wired to only expect the more traditional reading a document and using sections of it as a cipher to help line up some mechanical thing but since I knew the inventory wasnt off limits for puzzles here I had to keep my proverbial head on a swivel of course enemies are going to show up in increasing numbers to act as nice little barriers to progress and you cant expectedly leave them alone opting to dodge them or just spend your resources clearing out one specific route that you know youre going to take more than others but when I did feel like going all Rambo signalus did a great job of giving me essentially enough ammo to deal with the enemies I wanted to without making me feel like I was flush with this stuff even though Im positive I never once ran out of ammo for any of my guns during this playthrough I spent the entire game feeling like I was on the verge of doing just that which I think is a sign that again these people knew exactly what they were doing as far as survival horror is concerned and I think what really drives home that nearly constant feeling of running out of resources is how signal is heavily limits how much ammo you can fit in a single inventory slot in games like Resident Evil you might see similar limitations but you can often stack hundreds of rounds of ammo and its only going to take up as much space as a single bullet would in signalus I could only ever carry 20 rounds of handgun ammo in a single slot and even less for the other guns now realistically this isnt an actual hinderance because you could always just make a trip to the item box if you run low but it has this cool psychological effect of keeping the constant tension of running out in the front of your mind as usual with a survival horror game I finished signaluss last boss with an absolute Armory of resources left over but that didnt keep me from feeling like I was always on the verge of being defenseless anyways if you ask me that right there for this genre is like the gold standard for how you want your player to be feeling and you know Ive mentioned the puzzles several times now its probably about time I actually talk about them now I know the first thing you think of when someone mentions good game design likely isnt staring at a puzzle and trying to figure it out but hot damn to signalus have some absolutely killer head scratchers theres the more Baseline stuff you might expect like flipping levers or filling tubes of water in just the right order you know the kind of industrial puzzle design that feels like something some power plant worker actually has to do on a daily basis but theres also a nice selection of what I like to call Silent Hill style puzzles which is the kind of puzzle thatll have you gleaming some seemingly unimportant information from a document or scrap of paper and applying it to a riddle in order to get a solution things however go in extra Dimension deeper with the inclusion of a radio you can access at any time on top of it being cool that you can listen to this thing whenever you want and it keeps playing when youre outside the inventory theres also several puzzles that will incorporate it into their design for example you might need to solve a little mini puzzle to figure out exactly what station to listen in on and then you might just catch the kind of old numbers broadcast that youll find on any top 10 horror YouTubers Channel at some point in time hell you could just turn this thing on because you want to listen to it while youre playing Music Lord maybe Ill go ahead and turn it off for manly reasons now because I find it terrifying and Im not sure why there was also a really nice little roadblock that had me triangulating a broadcast to figure out which antennas were still functioning and then sending out a very specific signal so that I could catch it on my radio and unlock a case that needed a certain song to be played for it to be opened like I said before I know puzzles arent exactly what get most people out of bed in the morning but in this kind of game it is a necessity and I have no issues telling you that these are some of the best Ive ever come across they sit just on the border of the difficulty scale right before Things become too challenging and take too much time to figure out being able to play this game before anyone else had a chance to was a very interesting feeling for a small Channel like mine but it also came with the dread of knowing that if I did run into a puzzle that was too much for me to figure out well I was out of luck because no one had a chance chance to write any guides or post on any forms for help yet so I was on my own here and man did that make for a satisfying feeling when I came up against a tough Challenge and ended up thinking my way through it but of course everyone is going to have a different experience on that front but Im kind of an idiot so Ive got to assume you guys are going to be fine I would suggest if possible trying to hold off on looking up any puzzle solutions when you get stumped I myself had a few spots where I started to think this would be the one that got me but the solution you need is always right there you just have to know how to look for it if you want my advice just repeat this monster to yourself the more random and seemingly useless the information you come across the more likely that it is youll need it for a puzzle keep that in mind and make sure to stay on the lookout for any visual Clues and youll do just fine I promise and moving on to something that like five percent of you are even gonna care about I really enjoyed the inventory here in signalis it takes a very Silent Hill approach by sticking with a horizontal layout instead of res resident Evils vertical orientation although unlike sh it is limited in size so that does help play into the survival horror gameplay really well hitting the up or down direction will take you to your map radio or transcripts of anything youve read so far and here is the kicker thatll really get Survival horror fans ears perked up you can access this file log at any time even when youre currently looking at a puzzle man talk about a seemingly small but massive Innovation now how many times have you been struggling through a puzzle in a silent hill game and you need to keep quitting out so you can go into your inventory or even worse go read some documents somewhere in the room its little stuff like this thatll seem like such a minuscule addition on the surface but end up adding so much to the genre rules were all so used to and I think that makes for a good example of what Rose engine did here I mean clearly yes they were looking to make a survival horror game and in doing so there was going to be a need to at the very least recreate some of the work of others in the genre but this game proves you dont need a direct one-to-one copy of the old PS1 era survival horror blueprints to do that and thats a bigger feat than you might first think because too far movement in any direction and you could either end up with a game that is far too derivative or one that misses the mark by a country mile it seems to me these two really understood that much like the way these games are played sometimes progress forward in survival horror game design needs to come in a matter of inches too much and you risk totally altering the core experience of the genre too little and people will accuse you of producing something thats more of a copy than an homage and if there is one thing you trust me on make it this signalus is not just the way we old Resident Evil heads can get our survival horror fixed but its also something new something fresh and interesting its style look gameplay and overall atmosphere while very much in League with what you would expect from a game under this Banner is different enough to be appreciated all on its own Im not gonna lie to you guys by absolutely loved playing through signalus this past week I really lost myself in it and I absolutely could not recommend it anymore its just incredible but like they say to her is human and this game was very much made by humans so Im gonna get into some downsides points of interest and annoying bits that popped up during my game play but I want to remind you of two very important things first like I already said this is a game that I am very much willing to put my word behind Im confident that those of you who enjoy the content of this channel will have a blast with signalus even in the face of the stuff Im about to get into and second this is what I experienced with a pre-release press build of the game so there is a very good chance that some of the things Im about to mention here will not even be something youll need to worry about because they would have already been fixed alright that being said lets get down to the dirty business of being overly critical something you might have noticed I excel at foreign starting off with the least problematic weve got an issue where the prompt for opening doors climbing down ladders and just interacting with anything in the environment doesnt seem to extend to the area inside of the object so technically you could run into a door and pass the marker for opening it meaning if youre too close to a door or item youll have to fiddle with the d-pad so you get elster back far enough to reactivate that prompt foreign into for the first bit of time that you spend in a new area but once you get to know your surroundings and start really traversing the place youll be running all the time and even when I mash the action button the entire time leading up to getting in front of the door I would miss my opportunity like 15 20 of the time all right so I had a whole section of this script both written and voiced about how this can lead to getting cheap shotted when running from enemies and how annoying it could be in a game where like half of the experience is entering and exiting doors but before I wrote this script I messaged Yuri one half of Team Rose engine and let them know what Id run into and literally 20 minutes ago they messaged back saying they just pushed out an update thatll take care of it so you just got saved from not only having to experience that problem in the game but also having to hear me piss and moan about it thats a win-win continuing on I also found aiming to be a little finicky using the default control settings like I mentioned before sign Alice uses a system that anyone whos even glanced at a copy of Resident Evil will know and it does work well enough holding a shoulder button to aim and firing with the action button does exactly what you need it to but thanks to the games slightly angled perspective youre gonna need to do a lot of adjusting on the vertical access to make sure your shots are going to land now that I think about it thats not quite true because as far as elster is concerned its the horizontal axis but as far as your perspective goes its vertical thats a little too complex you guys get what Im trying to say though in order to deal with the quantum physics Ive just discovered the game uses an auto aim system and again it works fine its just switching those auto aim targets that gives me problems in theory youre supposed to use your right thumbstick to manually move your aim around and when you get near an enemy the auto aim will kick in to stick your reticle to them but in reality this process can be a bit of a dice roll sometimes getting within a certain range would have my cursor locking on no problem but sometimes it would pass right over a bad guy AI without even acting like it was going to lock on on top of that the default sensitivity for this thumbstick had my reticle flying across the room with the slightest bump of the stick this problem is only Amplified when trying to walk and aim at the same time moving seems to lessen how well the games auto aim can lock on which I think sounds like a nice trade-off on the surface and happens in all kinds of video games moving around lessens your ability to aim well it seems like a good idea but thats only true when the aiming Works consistently while youre standing still now obviously this comes into play more when you start running into two or three replicas in an area so it will take a while for it to get on your nerves but eventually I decided to see if there was anything I could do any options to lessen the annoyance and there I found a toggle that changed how aiming Works which in my opinion should probably be the default in this new mode I no longer had to hold the shoulder button but instead simply had to point the right analog stick in the direction I wanted to aim and thats exactly where it went it kind of functions the same way a top down down to win stick shooter does Auto aiming still works the same way it did before but for some reason this method just felt so much more natural to me I mean sure its not the traditional control style for combat in these games but hey it works after doing this I enjoyed combat way more which is crazy because I already liked it so if you find yourself struggling a bit try switching to manual mode and see if it helps you as much as it did me well even if it is working for you give it a shot its pretty damn fun of course this only applies if youre going to be using a controller but like I said before it does sort of feel like this game was intended to be played with one however if you do decide to use a keyboard and mouse I didnt find any issues whatsoever it was pretty easy to use and intuitive to figure out so you wont have any problems at all and at the end of this list weve got something that slightly borders outside of being a nitpick now to preface this you guys know I spend a solid portion of each day ass deep in survival horror titles I may not be massively good at video games as a whole but if theres one thing I excel at its strategy the kind of strategy that has you planning your next few moves before youve even left the save room how much am I going to need in my inventory to get where Im going and how can I make that same trip but still account for coming across items Im going to want along the way its a talent of mine and I consider myself to be damn good at it well I guess you guys do have access to my streams so maybe lets dial that back to marginally okay all right so that being said I felt like I had to return to the save room and drop items off in the item box way too often in my playthrough it was like a two steps forward and one step back kind of scenario I would set out with a bunch of empty spaces in my inventory and find a new room then I would collect a few things and like clockwork before I got to the key item in there I would always run out of space so then I would have to Trek Back to the item box to clear out space then go back and get the key item which almost always was meant for a later puzzle which means yep another trip back to the item box as the game went on this process became more and more frequent and by the end it felt like I had to repeat this same ritual for every room I came across and this was all going on with me carrying only one single weapon one box of ammunition for it and a single flashlight which is required for a lot of areas in the game I almost never had healing items on me because I never had space for him I mean sure I could have left the ammo in the safe room but dying in a fight I could have survived if I had access to more than one magazine is just as frustrating as walking back and forth between item boxes one thing that made this even worse is that the map only tracks rooms by whether or not youve been in them before so once I found a new room I would have to leave and dump my items before picking up the last few macguffins on the way back though that room would look like any other room on the map and the areas you explore here can be pretty damn big also keep in mind I stood a good chance of the enemies I had already down getting back up again during one of these trips so there was a lot working against me here making things a little more difficult than I would typically like now in the developers defense they do offer an option to trash items right there on the spot and to a normal functioning brain that sounds like a solution to my problem well that is most certainly not what I have in my head because the re fan in me just wouldnt allow me to dump healing items or ammo despite the fact that I finished the game with so much of both I could probably start the game again and not have to pick anything up I feel like there are a few possible ways something like this could be avoided the first thing that comes to mind would be the most obvious just add a few more item slots Id say even a single additional inventory space might have pulled me out of this kind of situation at least half the times it happened to me barring that maybe have equipped weapons or secondary items like flashlights stun rods or flares not take up space in the inventory once theyre equipped or maybe you could do neither of those things and give the player either an option to drop items where they stand Allah Ari zero or mark key items on the map when the player comes across them the same way it does for puzzles at least that way getting back to the room theyre contained in would be a little easier after dumping items off now I do understand that any of these options could have dire consequences concerning the games tight survival horror design but I think theres definitely a solution there somewhere within the margins regardless though I want you guys to know that nothing listed here came anywhere close to ruining this experience if anything you could think of these issues as a few near microscopic mosquitoes splatting up against an otherwise pristine windshield this is a game that Im incredibly glad I got to play and when Im done with this video best believe I will be playing through it one more time I loved nearly every second of signalus even when it was pissing me off it was only doing that because I wanted so bad to keep moving forward and see what new Mysteries Id find in the shadows I mean come on its not every day you get play a survival horror game that you could spend more than 10 hours in well I guess now that I think about it its not every day you get to just play a survival horror game I think when it all comes down to it Im most excited that signalus gives me a killer little narrative world to experience that old school style of survival horror gameplay in but if I had to pick a second most exciting thing about the game it would be the absolutely eye melting style dripping from every crevice of it in my original video covering signaluss demo I described it as an intersection between Dead Space Ergo Proxy and sutomunihei and since that video released Ive been racking my brain for a more apt description and Ill level with you I dont think one exists from the dead space side of things we get that run down sort of retro future Vibe even though this is a world that is developed attack to make sentient machines and colonize other planets people still seem to use CRT monitors and their computers resemble old PC 8800s or maybe an MSX the original Dead Space is reliance on that brown color scheme often gets replicated too although when it does it seems like this is more of a not towards silent Hills other world with its rusted chain link kind of design like I said I also see Ergo Proxy in there and thats thanks to the sort of post goth dystopic uniformity to things and I mean that both literally and figuratively everything in the world is wearing some kind of a uniform which I guess would make sense after all we are mainly dealing with machines mass-produced to serve very specific purposes I imagine youd want a quick way to differentiate your replicas meant for digging in the mines from the ones who are supposed to be taking care of administrative tasks the environments you explore if you look past their mangled destroyed States seem to point towards a similar approach to uniformity and design everything seems to reflect a sort of impersonal industrial aesthetic where individualistic touches like decorations are foregone for a big focus on utilitarianism each room you walk into seems to most efficiently serve whatever purpose its been assigned to and nothing much else the scant few areas youll come across that look to contain at least some personal Flair reflect a very cold kind of feeling like they were put together by an assembly line robot working off of some predictive algorithm aimed at mimicking human interior design in the satomu nihei influences should be pretty clear even if youve only caught a passing glance at something like biomega or blame in both works we see a black leather and Industrial look to outfits that give off the feeling of brief glimpses of humanity breaking through a filter of mechanical accessories theres also a very cool Reliance on negative space to punctuate the outline of the more human forms and draw the eye to the pipes and electrical conduits that surround them and if youre geriatric enough to have lived through the 90s like me youre likely to see some Peter Chung in there as well honestly I would be very surprised if at least one of the devs at Rose engine werent a fan of Aeon Flux moving away from possible influences though we have to talk about what a departure this is for the genre as the years have gone by weve seen a lot of takes on survival or but traditionally theyve stayed within a certain realm as far as their presentation goes of course pre-rendered backgrounds May no longer be a Mainstay much to my chagrin but the overall aesthetic remains largely unchanged well signalus bucks that Trend with its nearly top-down perspective and low-res 3D thats so aliased it might as well be Sprite based and I really mean that by the way when I first saw the trailer for this game I just thought these were 2D Sprites with incredibly fluid animations and the same goes for the inventory look at these images of your items you get the feeling that youre looking at a 2D image until it starts spinning around on you the environment seems to be mostly 2D with low res 3D objects thrown on top I say that because I noticed the light from my flashlight was altered believably when cast on objects with differing Heights and shapes and the rest of the environment just did not have the same effect also as a fun little plus firing your gun shows real-time accurate Shadow casting for stuff like pillars or furniture something thats always appreciated but you dont really expect in a game that looks like this artistically speaking this style just flat out gels with me its this awesomely dark look that seems to be both dystopian and clean at the same time everyones wearing suits that wouldnt be out of place in an episode of gaunts and your surroundings are cold and isolating it had this sort of uncanny effect that the Resident Evil 1.5 build also had on me where everything was recognizable as a sort of everyday location that should have a lot of people in it but not seeing anyone around causes this lonely dysphoria one thing I really got into though was how consistent the visual themes are applied here the Retro future approach can be seen represented everywhere from computers and radios to your in-game map and even your inventory screen everything has a wonderfully realized aesthetic that I can only describe as the way people from the 80s thought the future would look kind of like technology kept increasing in complexity and usefulness but retained the same visual look it had back when personal computers first started shipping with actual hard drives in them essentially everything in the game feels like youre viewing it through an uncalibrated interlace screen thats constantly displaying command line code the lighting is pristine with great looking Shadows cast by overhead lights and the muzzle flash from your gun and infected replicas have these glitchy visuals happening all around them kind of like their infection is distorting how youre seeing them with your mechanical eyes very cool effect now Im definitely into the perspective here but throughout the game you will get a few opportunities to shift to first person which I think really livens things up a bit there are the sections where you can interact with stuff like Puzzles or examining something and these give off a heavy point-and-click Adventure game Vibe which I always really like being able to look around and interact with stuff via a little cursor on the screen just adds this nice flare to the total package here and the amount of detail in these departures never fails to impress me also you get a close-up look at this worlds Tech which is just really cool there are also short sections that play out from a first person perspective and gives you full control of your movements these areas are visually Moody with great lighting and the same low resolution Alias 3D thats seen everywhere else which you should read as amazing in fact after spending a bit of time in this train flashback Im just dying to see Rose engine make a full 3D game off of this aesthetic While most of your playthrough will be spent looking at relatively pristine sanitary interior designs towards the end the infection raging through the Mining facility will cause these organic growths to show up all over and it looks awesome in my opinion near the end youll also notice a move towards a very other world kind of look rusted metal chain link grates and a heavy shift towards deep red in the environment matched with garish yellow lighting its a very Silent Hill one look and that is exactly the compliment it sounds like secondary stuff like animations and the Run Cycle look great to my eye with my only complaint being the stomp you can deliver to downed enemies it feels like there should have been a little more movement here as it looks like elsters just barely lifting her leg but other than that Im very happy with how all of this looks in motion I really enjoyed the layout and look of the inventory screen and the way its organized seems to make it pretty intuitive to navigate which is important in a game like this the game often shows off some killer looking cutscenes that can rapidly switch between 2D Sprite art and 3D which is awesome to see in motion the art style here is very anime influenced and the sharp pixels make for an incredibly attractive look and like a lot of other indie games that are trying to emulate that retro look signalus has a CRT filter in the options and I really liked it despite the fact that Im typically not a big fan of stuff like this it believably softens the image and adds a bit of the kind of fisheye Distortion you would get from actually displaying this game on an old CRT TV honestly this is how I would have played the game if I werent capturing footage for a video I tried out a test upload with some footage of the game using the CRT mode and YouTubes compression had it looking far less attractive than it actually is in person but Im really happy they included it because when I replay the game this is exactly how Im gonna look at it so if youre the kind of weirdo that cant stand looking at sharp pixels and aliased images once you get out of the psych ward dont worry signalus has got you covered moving away from signaluss look for a bit I have to mention its absolutely killer soundtrack I could definitely hear some Akira yamoka inspiration in there with a few very industrial tracks punctuated by heavy clanging sounds arranged into a type of Melody mostly this style is relegated to the combat sections but every once in a while youll hear that same metallic percussion heavy aesthetic somewhere else however unlike yamaokas later work on Silent Hills 2 and 3 signaluss music is mostly devoid of your more traditional song structure most of the non-action-packed tracks seem to focus on Long synthy ambient tones that give off a very soothing feel which I would say perfectly fits the tone of the places that youll hear them in of course the games also trying to Spook you out so there are plenty of tracks that will have that slightly off kind of sound that subconsciously gives you the feeling that things arent quite right these tracks have a lot of low droning in them with peaks of sudden jumps to higher nodes basically what Im saying is this is not the kind of music you listen to outside of the game when youre looking for that typical Verse pre-chorus Chorus 4 4 song structure Melodies and a lot of the music here dont exactly repeat but instead theyre drawn out for long periods slightly changing over time time until they end with a totally different sound in the same key it feels very appropriate for the setting and fits the overall feel of the game so well its crazy honestly my only complaint is that the music doesnt make it into the game enough mostly when youre just walking around and exploring instead of Music youll have ambient tones layered to create a sort of soundscape that resembles the place youre currently in honestly for a good chunk of the game youre going to be listening to something that sounds a lot like the kind of high-pitched home that Electronics give off while theyre running foreign Music dont get me wrong it is very immersive but its overall volume is pretty low compared to the rest of the game and I would just love to hear some of the more melodic stuff more often plus the lack of percussion in most of these tracks can have a sort of droning effect if youve been listening to it for a long time and you probably will be regardless though this game has some incredible sound design and its music is most definitely one of its high points when you consider how good of a package this is overall that is really saying something well guys theres not much left to say here that I havent already said signalus is an amazingly fresh look at the survival horror genre and even if these types of games werent so rare it would still be just as interesting its look sound and gameplay all just ooze a real attention to style and detail and I truly cant recommend it enough its releasing on PC and major consoles including the switch so hit pause on this video and grab yourself a copy its really that good outside of its General quality though I would say theres something a little more important going on here on top of this being a very high quality video game that is worthy of a purchase in its own right its about damn time we show the market exactly what we want from it if the AAA industry isnt interested in catering to us anymore thats totally fine well take the money we would have spent there and give it to smaller developers who were willing to release the games weve been wanting to play for years and that goes for other quality titles too go grab yourself a copy of Alyssa and tormented Souls its about time we started voting with our wallets listen I know Ive been hammering on this subject a lot lately but I really cannot get over this new survival horror explosion we went from having literally no games in the genre to play for years to actually having to choose which survival horror game were gonna buy from month to month it really is a great time to be alive for people like us and if you want to see this trend grow in effect much higher budget games its time to show them exactly how much money they could be making so if you know of a small developer working on a project like this follow them on Twitter share their trailers and help build hype around their games support their work and do everything you can to show it to like-minded people hell feel free to list it in the comment section below so I can know about it too lets help turn this short boom into a lasting Trend in the industry if youve been watching this Channel or channels like mine for a while Ive got to imagine more of these games is exactly what youre looking for and its about time we did our part to make sure that happens and on that inspirational note I think its about time for me to get back to work I hope to see each and every one of you again in the next one but until then as usual Im Jared and this is Avalanche reviews well well look who it is you know after conducting a very long double-blind study the data seems to indicate that only the most sexually attractive desirable people make it to the end of my video so congrats on that if you like survival horror Ive got a few videos on screen that youll probably also like and if you want to support more work just like this I have a patreon linked on screen as well as the YouTube partnership program down below the video however if thats not the cards for you very understandable a like comment or share will do just as much good I assure you well guys I love you all very much stay safe and Ill see you all again next time peace out how to launch epic games from steam Membership - MERCH!!! - Patreon - Twitter - For the longest time, I thought the incredible genre Resident Evil popularized was gone. I figured we would never see a true survival horror game again, and man have I never been this glad to be wrong. It seems like new survival horror games are coming out of the wood work now. Which is awesome, but one that seems to stand above the rest is Signalis. A nearly top down take on the genre, looking to combine equal elements of Silent Hill Resident Evil and.... Maybe Alien??? Either way, lets take a look at it and see if its worthy of belonging to such an amazing lineage. 00:00 Intro 01:59 Development 04:03 Story 14:55 Gameplay 30:48 Some Complaints 40:24 Presentation 48:52 Soundtrack 51:22 Closing Thoughts 53:45 End steam deck gpu equivalent can't log into steam dodger game steam ready or not game steam steam expansion joint