By Edwin Velez
Reviewed on Xbox One
Released on September 6th, 2016 for Xbox One (Also on PS4, PSVita, and PC)
Developer: Hailstorm Games Publisher: Hailstorm Games
During a regular trip to the hospital to visit her mother, Claire notices some things start to become, well, irregular. Her real world nightmare of struggling with a brain-dead relative quickly becomes one of dark fantasies, with shadowy halls lining her venture back to her mother’s room. These halls are not empty however, and in these shadows lurk dark and cryptic figures, looking to harm Claire. You need to not only avoid these creatures, but keep yourself calm if you want to survive. The game features no weapons, and instead puts emphasis on out running, hiding from, and just generally avoiding these creatures at all costs. One of the titles key features is a stress/fear monitoring system, which reacts to the way you play. It would seem that this is from how well you handle situation, either being calm, cool, and collective or jumping easily and darting towards the nearest door. It is a neat feature, as a strong and unexpected vibrate from the controller is usually enough to get a good real life panic out of me. When you are hurt or panicky, you can take a quick peek into your inventory to try and remedy the situation. Usually a nice cold cola or hot coffee can heal either of these issues respectively, with a variety of other items available to do the same in different strides. In addition to that, the game features both a lighter and a flashlight to help guide you through the dimly lit halls. Keep an eye on that flashlight though, because batteries are limited.
Claire is a solid, spooky experience. While not always scary, it does what it aims to by inducing panic within the player. I wish it was a little more inclusive with objectives, but aside from a few puzzles and fetch quests, your main objective is simply to survive. But again, that is what the title aims for, I just wish there was just something more to dive into. At the end of the day, Claire gets the job done, embodying creepy themes all while keeping the narrative on track. With a solid story and great look, Claire is fit for any fan of 90’s survival horror games that started it all.
*Note: A copy of this game was provided for the purposes of the review
Final Score: 7.5/10
+Respects the Survival-Horror Genre