In 2018 Remothered: Tormented Fathers was released, considered the modern spiritual heir to the iconic survival horror Clock Tower. What counted in atmosphere and tension was lacking in fundamental elements and subtlety. Despite its modest success, it went largely unnoticed. Remothered: Broken Porcelain is its next sequel, and the Storming Games team is trying to polish the formula and breathe life into the survival horror genre with a terrifying new experience.
In Remothered: Broken Porcelain you play as 15-year-old Jennifer, a young maid at the Ashmann Inn which begins to discover the true horrors that occur behind doors. The connection with its predecessor does not just click, however, we are sure that there will be more surprises and we will tie the dots once the story progresses. While this is technically a sequel, director Chris Darril puts a lot of emphases that first-time players in the series will feel just as welcome as returning ones. Thanks to its significant improvements in the formula – at least from a gameplay point of view – we couldn’t agree more.
Everything you need to provide the terrifying Tormented Fathers’ experience is back. A creepy location inspired by classic horror (this time we traded the mansion for a hotel), creatures lurking in the hallways, and perhaps most importantly, very strict limitations when it comes to defending yourself. Something like the most classic survival horror games (and the most recent Alien: Isolation), Remothered: Broken Porcelain is a game in which we must avoid danger instead of facing it. Stealth, hiding, and distractions will again be the main mechanics, where the real terror lies in the anticipation of the scare rather than the scare itself.
The first Remothered had all the ballots to be one of the references of the genre today, but it seems that he did not win the prize. With this sequel, we try to build on the excellent setting of the previous one with mechanics that do justice to the atmosphere. At Tormented Fathers, sometimes we felt like avoiding the stalkers was a matter of luck; Often it was enough to go around the corners and hope they didn’t see you immediately. It seems that Broken Porcelain has taken this quite seriously and has adapted not only the general maneuverability of the character (we will now be able to jump objects) but also gives us a fairly solid system of covers, something that surprisingly was omitted in the hiding options from the first game.
Jennifer, the protagonist, has far more tools in her arsenal than her predecessor, Rosemary. Remothered allows you to not only collect items from around the house and use them as a defense or distraction but now incorporates crafting options. We cannot give details on the depth of this system, but we imagine that the objects will not go beyond what a 15-year-old girl scared to the core can create. During a presentation gameplay, we were shown a bottle combined with some flour, becoming an object that went from being an inconvenience to the stalker to a blinding flour explosion. It is a weapon that could really be done in this situation, which requires a very imaginative effort on the part of the development team to make the player feel inside the game and the threat is real.
With all these tools also comes the ability to attack, although it remains less in an attempt to knock down and destroy your enemies and more in an experience like the flour bottle mentioned above. Assuming that, as in the first game, the death of your stalker is reserved exclusively for cut scenes.
Jennifer is also presented with a new, slightly more supernatural ability. The Moth Eye – allowing you to scan areas, collect information about your pursuers, and even briefly mark their position. New skills like this not only serve to enhance the experience but are an attempt to cheer up the player’s wits when faced with multiple dangers.
Indeed, unlike Tormented Fathers, Broken Porcelain enables multiple threats at once to hunt you down. But not only that, they can work together and try to track you by the smell in the same area. They also have spies in the environment, such as dogs or birds that announce your presence and hiding places if it occurs to you not to take them into account. The stalkers (like the hotel owner, Mr. Ashmann) seem to kick in as soon as they hear some ambient sound rather than the antagonists in the first game, who felt more mechanical. The enemies this time seem to be smarter, they will do everything in their power to find you and kill you.
The influences of the genre on Remothered are quite clear.
Perhaps Remothered’s greatest value is about its atmospheres and environments, they will make you feel trapped without any escape. However, he gives you a feeling of satisfaction as you find your way through the map to discover the exit. During the presentation, we saw the kitchen and restaurant areas on which the game’s producer, Antonio Cutrona, openly stated that they were based at the Hotel de El Resplandor. It is clear that not only in this title but also in Tormented Fathers, that the terror cards in Remothered are on the table. Game director Chris Darril has no secrets about Rosemary Reed’s similarity to the FBI agent who plays Jodie Foster in The Silence of the Lambs and when we asked about the similarity of the new antagonist, Andrea, with Kathy Bates in Misery, answered cheerfully a “you have discovered another reference!”
We are not quite sure how to feel about references to the horror genre in Remothered. For a fan of the genre, it’s really cool to come across these kinds of moments and play in environments where you’ve previously been terrified. We also wish Stormind Games focused more on building their own form of terror rather than lean on the arms of other giants.
We really want to see more about Remothered: Broken Porcelain, the little we have seen is very promising. In addition to the notorious influences, we believe that the construction of the atmosphere is very strong. We hope that, with all the new mechanics at the base, the gameplay can rise and match the terrifying tone of the title.