Ultra-Indie Daily Dose: Shroud House
Hello, you glorious gluttons for all things indie horror! Are you just starving for the newest of the new, the most unknownest of the unknown? If so, you’ve come to the right place. Welcome to the Ultra-Indie Daily Dose! In this series, we’re going to pick a new game every day from an indie horror creator you’ve probably never heard of. No million-dollar budgets or factory productions. This is the space for the little guy with not but a developer toolkit and a dream. So if you’re down to roll the dice on something different, then stick around and check it out!
Welcome back to your Daily Dose of possibly possessed Indie Horror! Get out your Ouija boards, because taking over our minds and bodies today is the 1-bit styled ghost tale Shroud House, conjured into existence by ravancloak. A short but supernaturally sweet roguelite set within an endless house of cosmic cadaverous dreams.
Like many proper supernatural thrillers, Shroud House begins with a group of friends with a thirst for deadly danger. The thinning veil of Halloween is, of course, the most appropriate Night for their urban exploration. The house, imbued with the unsanctified energy of two unfortunate souls lost exactly one year prior. It rang out to to young crew like a void-kissed bell. A horrible clanging… Should they even be here? In spite of all warning signs, there’s no turning back now.
The main character, Lucy pushes all fear deep into the pit of her stomach, taking a step of courage within. A cheerful blondie, Sam, excitedly gives you the rundown on your Night ahead, quickly prancing off to find the nearest make-out room. With all the demons ahead, I can’t blame her. But separation is a grave mistake in these halls and ever-twisting rooms. A disgruntled entity snatched up the malleable minds of half the crew. With World of Horror vibes, it now falls upon you and your faithful friend to fight your way through a labyrinth of surreal nightmares, armed with little but your sanity. The best part about getting to fight all the nebulous demons within the Shroud House? You can… Seduce them? Or rather, talk them down from their encased spiritual rage, with each sigil-painted face unlocking one of the four fetters of the bound Terra.
Or, if you’re braver than my Lucy, just go in swinging at some eldritch apparitions. Each room, a test of your dissolving sanity and confidence with its scenes ranging from the bottom of an aquarium, to a host of coal-eyed doubles crowding your exit. As far as I can tell, the ending is always the same, but that doesn’t mean you can’t just book it out to save your own ghost-kissed hide. If you gather the gumption, however, pull that persuasion skill back out, and get chatting. Shroud House is simplistic, yet the falsely-generated entanglement of phantasmal rooms plays well with the aesthetics and retro inspiration. Enough to get me to run through it a couple times over. Plus, with the killer soundtrack motivating me through, I think I’ll stay and rest…. Forever…