DREAD X COLLECTION – THE DEVS AND DETAILS
It’s hard to imagine that not even a month ago we announced the Dread X Collection. There wasn’t a whole lot to share at the time other than who the 10 developers would be and the basic structure of the project. I wasn’t being secretive; at the time of writing, we were only halfway through making the games. Since then, plenty of people have asked me when we will have more to share. What’s the release date, what are the games, what should we expect, when will we see a trailer? Well, as of today, I’m happy to answer all of those questions.
The Trailer: If all goes according to plan, the trailer for the Dread X Collection should already be up by the time this article goes live. The good people at IGN have agreed to do the announcement for us, so you can check it out over there for the first few hours it’s live. After that, you can see it at the top of this article.
Where’s the Steam Page: The Steam store page will be up soon. Like, the next couple of days soon. Turns out, there might be a reason most games don’t release in a month. We needed all of the games to be done before we could make the trailer. That took some time, since one of our crew had to start his development time later (we weren’t going to ask anyone to sacrifice their health and personal life for the project. We’re not *Insert AAA Game Company Name Here*). Then we needed that lovely trailer to actually get made. Then we needed to run the trailer past the devs, get it edited, and a final version put together. Only then can you submit it all to Steam. After a few days, they come back and tell you what you need to change to get the store page finalized. So you then submit, wait a few days, so on. So for some context, development started April 5th. With one person having to start at a later date, we finished on April 20th. It took me a day to capture all the footage, and after edits the final trailer was ready on the 27th. We got the Steam page off for review that day, got back some notes, made some changes, sent it back… and here we are now. The good news is that all the technical stuff is up and running. As soon as we get the approval, the page will be up for your viewing pleasure.
Release Date: Two weeks after the Steam page goes live. That’s the minimum amount of time Steam lets you go from publicly viewable to actually selling the game. So expect the Dread X Collection in the second half of May.
The Games: Before I give you a list of what’s coming, I want to give you some background into what to expect from the Dread X Collection. As a media journalist for the past seven years, I’ve always been a proponent of transparency. Well, I guess it’s time to actually live up to those ideals. The most nervous than I’ve ever been in my life was when I pushed the publish button on that introduction. Like many horror fans, I have a lot of opinions. One of those opinions is that good horror can be made quickly and cheaply as long as you put the power in the hands of talented people with an honest vision. So that’s what we did. We got together 10 incredibly talented developers and just told them to, “make the P.T. for your ideal horror project in 7 days.” Not, “remake P.T.” The Dread X Collection isn’t just 10 re-dos of P.T. with different graphical styles. 10 games that serve as both standalone experiences and introductions into a larger horror world. That is the essence of P.T.
After that, we had an initial conference call with all the developers to make sure two people weren’t making the exact same game. Turns out it was a non-issue, as the 10 proposals we got were all wildly different. Soon after, everyone got to work. There was plenty of friendly collaboration on our secret project Discord server. But everyone was left to collaborate or ask for assistance on their own volition. Never once did we tell any of the devs that they couldn’t do something. We never asked anyone to change their game to fit the larger project. It was a risky move. We could have wound up with 10 mediocre spooky hallway simulators.
As the deadline approached and the release builds started pouring into my inbox, that nervousness quickly transformed into excitement. The 10 games you are getting in the Dread X Collection are all wildly different. The biggest thing that unifies them is that none of them feel like they were made in just 7 days. We could not be happier with the results. We have a haunted house puzzle game. We have a tactics/card game hybrid. We have a spooky Tiger Electronics homage. We have PSX psychic internet bug-gods in post-apocalypse London. Some of the games are 30-minutes long. Some of them are 2-hours long. I can confidently say that you’re getting your $7 worth. And as a quick reminder, $2 of that $7 is going to Doctors Without Borders.
Okay, that’s enough setting the stage. Here’s what you really want. Below is a screenshot and brief description for each game. I’ve also included a link to each developer’s interview where they talk more about the game. Coming soon to the Dread X Collection:
Airdorf – SUMMER NIGHT: From the creator of Faith. Run around in your backyard picking toadstools and chasing monkeys in this LCD handheld game where nothing scary happens! If you know Airdorf, you know there’s more here than meets the eye. Airdorf’s pod.
Oddbreeze Games – The Pay is Nice: From the creator of 167: The Grand Block Odyssey. Discover what happens in an ultra secure facility, as you get ready for work and wander the dark halls of your office. Using old school fixed-camera perspective, they’re watching your every moves. This one is more narrative-driven. The most “chapter 1” out of any game in the collection. Jonathan’s Pod.
Scythe Dev Team – Carthanc: From the people that brought you Walls Closing In, Entity, Happy’s Humble Burger Barn, and the rest of the Scythe Saga Universe. Explore the ruins of an ancient society on a dead planet. This one also features some really stylish visuals and screaming cyber-murder-skeletons. Lots of running without the hiding. Will test your platforming skills and reflexes. Jon of the Shred’s Pod.
Strange Scaffold – Mr. Bucket Told Me To: From the creator of An Airport for Aliens Currently Run By Dogs and the writer of Hypnospace Outlaw. The abandoned tools of your existence come back to haunt you in a surreal and terrifying tropical survival adventure. Think Cast Away, but Wilson thinks you’re a dick. Blurs the line between cute and cartoony and psychological horror. Xalavier’s pod.
Torple Dook – Hand of Doom: From the co-creator of Earl’s Day Off. Trapped in an arcane realm by the dark sorcery of the ubiquitous Master, can you learn the correct rituals and incantations needed to escape? A hybrid of classic Might & Magic RPG perspective, intuitive puzzles, and spooky ghosts. Torple Dook’s pod.
David Szymanski – The Pony Factory: From the creator of DUSK, Fingerbones, and The Moon Sliver. Winston thought he could use hell energy to create magical ponies. Winston was wrong. The shooter of the bunch. Utilizes that Doom 3 mechanic that made you switch between your gun and flashlight. Improves spookiness by at least 80%. David’s pod.
Mahelyk – Outsiders: From the creator of SCP: Blackout. Enter a world of uncertainly as you discover the truth behind the house, and behind the Outsiders. The spooky haunted house game of the bunch. Find keys to open doors and items to open other doors. Expect to die a lot… but that’s part of the game. There’s a lot more than meets the eye with this one. Kyle’s pod.
Lovely Hellplace – Shatter: From the creator of Dread Delusion. In the ruins of future Britain, new gods rule the wastes. An adventure game in the PSX style. There’s some enemies to avoid, but this one is more about experiencing and absorbing the world. And oh, what a world it is to absorb. James’s pod.
Snowrunner Productions – Rotgut: From the creator of Soda Drinker Pro. Crystal Tigers Presents: The Circle World Party! Walk through an abandoned tunnel and take some time to look at all the bizarre art. Piece together the lives of those who scribbled their thoughts on the walls. Definitely the most experimental game of the bunch. It’s more of a slow discomfort simulator. But that’s exactly what people want from the creator of Soda Drinker Pro. Will’s pod.
Secret Cow Level – Don’t Go Out: From the creator of Doomtrooper and one of the minds behind Fallout: New Vegas. Run. Hide. Sacrifice your friends. Survive the night. It’s a card game. It’s a turn-based RPG. And it’s all built in Justin’s own engine. Balanced to feel old-school. Which means it throws you in the deep end and lets you figure out how to swim. Expect to die a lot. Justin’s pod (in editing).
And More…: That’s about all I can overtly state for now. I will vaguely hint at that there is more in the package than just the 10 games. The 10 games are the main draw, but we wanted to put something else in to please the fans. Stay tuned for more on that in the next Dread X Collection update.
I want to thank you all for reading all the way through this long post. As I said earlier, I think that transparency is key. My editor would probably be tearing his hair out right now if I had one. But I hope that anyone following the project knows the level of honesty we want to bring to the table. As always, you can follow us on Twitter to learn more about the project as it comes closer to launch.