Great news for fans of 1999’s cult horror movie as we get to explore the legends of The Black Hills Forest in a new Blair Witch Game.
From all of the great news and impressive games that were demonstrated at this year’s E3, perhaps one of the most intriguing was the surprise announcement of an upcoming game based on The Blair Witch Project.
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For those who don’t know, The Blair Witch Project is a psychological horror movie from 1999 centered around a witch legend in the Black Hills Forest of Maryland.
You can check out the amazing trailer here:
WARNING: Contains some strong language and scenes of intense horror that some people with a heart condition may find uncomfortable.
Credited with starting the “Found Footage” sub-genre of horror, The Blair Witch Project is shot from the perspective of a group of students making a documentary about a witch from the fictional town of Burkittsville.
The movie is famous for it’s intense use of silence, strange sounds of the woods and a very strong sense of foreboding.
The real strong point of the movie is the film makers’ attention to detail when outlining the story of The Blair Witch.
While filming the documentary, the three students are seemingly stalked by an ominous and invisible force.
A cascade of strange incidents while out in the woods, coupled with their belief in the legend of the witch culminates in the character’s descent into madness and ultimately their doom.
The creators actually developed an entire backstory of the witch and a history of the town of Burkittsville.
This plays into the main story of the movie which references numerous incidents of horrific crime of which the perpetrators have historically blamed on the Blair Witch.
Most notably the crimes of Rustin Parr, a hermit who is said to have abducted and murdered children at the behest of the witch.
Also, the incident at Coffin Rock, when a search party looking for a missing girl were found naked and bound together with their insides removed.
A sequel to the movie was also made and while not as intense as the original, maybe because it was shot in a traditional style, actually had some intense scenes of horror and tied in nicely with the legend of the witch.
A follow up movie entitled Blair Witch was released in 2016 and while it didn’t achieve the success of the original, it was canon to the story and was a nice revisit to the Black Hills Forest.
The style of the new game shown at E3 appears to be based upon a mixture of the original and the 2016 follow up movie, sticking to the lore and canon of the saga set two years after the events of The Blair Witch Project.
Told from the perspective of a detective searching for a missing boy, we once again get to delve a little further into the history of Burkittsville and the mystery of The Blair Witch.
In a friendly and respectful reference to the 1999 movie, the game action can be viewed through a typical 90’s camera, which I am sure will come in to greater effect as the events of the story begin to unfold.
From what has been show, the game appears to be opting for a purely survival based experience in the vain of Resident Evil 7, Alien Isolation and Outlast in a narrative driven story that will allow us to experience the horror of being stalked by the twisted spirit of Elly Kedward.
Much in the same way as the movie, when the game’s horrors begin to manifest and the terror sets in, as in real life, the only thing one can do is run, and run fast.
Escaping the malicious forces in this game won’t be easy, as with other games of the genre, sometimes turning around and trying to fight will just get you killed.
What makes more sense is to try to uncover the truth of the matter while simultaneously hiding from whatever it is that is trying to kill you. This looks set to be a very scary game indeed.
Click to enlarge…
The time and effort that the creators of The Blair Witch Project have put in to developing the canon and lore of the series should, if handled correctly make for an excellent game with sequels sure to follow.
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While this isn’t the first Blair Witch game, of witch there were a series of three not so great games released in 2000 (published by Take Two Interactive), it appears that this is the Blair Witch game that fans of the legend, myself included, deserve.
The Blair Witch is scheduled for release this August on Xbox One and PC.
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Many thought that his youth (and adulthood) playing video games was a waste of time but here he is writing about them for a living.
Michael has a background in IT and enjoys (apart from video games) building and repairing PC’s, digital artwork (Photoshop, 3DS Max) and has interests in too many subjects to mention.