Horror games are truly fantastic. Over the past few years, new and exciting experiences have risen to the occasion, attempting to scare each and every one of us. Heavy hitters like Resident Evil 7 and The Evil WIthin have entered the fray. Beyond the bigger games, you have releases like Darkwood and Claire pushing the genre forward. Beyond that, you have a game like Rise of Insanity and it all starts to go downhill.
Rise of Insanity is everything I've never wanted in a horror game. The bland, predictable and downright cliché story is heartbreaking for anyone who'll have the misfortune of having to experience it. Two hours or less of wafer-thin character development, poor voice acting and spelling mistakes abound.
You take control of Dr. Stephen Dowell, a psychologist with a shady past who's now tasked with taking care of a difficult patient. For the sake of the plot, the good doctor is showing symptoms of multiple mental illnesses. After all, nothing is scarier than an "insane" person, right?
It's worth mentioning that it only took me a glance at the game's description to figure out the twist ending. This made for a very painful first-time playthrough. The game hopes to offer something akin to horror greats such as The Shining and Silent Hill but fails to do so. One stand out moment features an elevator of which blood comes bursting out of it. I wonder where I've seen that before?
As you slog your way through, you'll encounter such fun as reading notes, solving pointless puzzles and the ever-growing feeling of never feeling threatened. There are no enemies to find and no chase sequences to experience. Just the odd jump-scare alongside an accompaniment of loud noises. There really is nothing to do or even enjoy when playing Rise of Insanity. The game has a particular rhythm to it, with each level being a short yet boring experience. You'll collect a few items, solve a puzzle and move on. Everything felt like padding, an attempted excuse to push the game beyond the two-hour mark.
I should mention that the developers at Red Limb Studio seem to be thinking ahead of the game. They're applying what I can only assume to be advanced rendering techniques and much more! My lowly GTX 1080 struggled to maintain a stable frame rate. I can only assume that this game was somehow released early, as only the computers of the future could handle such a graphically intense beast. Either that or the game wasn't optimized very well. The footage in my video review will have to help us decide.
Rise of Insanity is a very uncomfortable game to play. The unstable frame rate was near enough a constant throughout my entire playthrough, with only a few moments not suffering from this issue. For the first time ever, I had actually experienced motion sickness from a video game due to the instability that occurs when playing. This world of Insanity doesn't look great either. Most of the levels are fairly plain and inoffensive, but a closer inspection reveals the cracks. Any interested players can see stretched textures from falling debris, 2D shadows cast from thin air, weird lighting and so on.
One particular location acted as a full-on assault upon my eyes. This level was an all white, poorly textured hell that looks straight out of Unity's terrain editor with little care towards how the visuals would affect the player. It was also on this map that I once walked through a wall and continued onwards for ten minutes. Eventually, I fell through the map and found an area that is never accessible at any point in the level. Which begs the question. Why is a truly huge environment rendered (colliders and all) when the player is never meant to go there? Is this purely a waste of resources? I believe this to be the case. In fact, this could be one of the factors as to why the game runs so poorly, but that's purely my own speculation.
Regardless, even if you discount any technical concerns, Rise of Insanity is a terrible game. Avoid this. Please.
Our Rise of Insanity video review was conducted on PC via Steam using a copy provided by the developers.
Rise of Insanity is a complete mess of a horror game that shows little care to its genre, its players, and those who suffer from a mental illness.
- End Credit Song Is Pretty Good
- Can Be Uninstalled
- Treatment Of Mental Illness
- Predictable Story
- Spelling Mistakes And Other Similar Issues
- Runs Poorly