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‘Outlast 2’: Everything We Know So Far

“Your only choices are to run, hide, or die.” This instruction seems standard when it comes to horror games. And yet, it barely begins to describe the horror that lies within Outlast. This first-person survival horror game earned high praise for its intense gameplay and riveting story. It was, without a doubt, a breath of fresh air in the horror genre. As such, expectations (and hype) are set high for its forthcoming sequel.

Outlast takes place in Mount Massive Asylum, a mental hospital overrun by its disturbed patients. The only goal is to survive long enough to uncover the dark secrets of the asylum. Incapable of fighting, the player can only run and hide. This emphasis on stealth is aptly paired with the game’s signature night vision camcorder, the player’s only equipment. The chilling atmosphere of suspense and scares made the game truly terrifying.

Created by a group of AAA game studio veterans, Outlast delivers a horror experience like no other. It uses all of the classic horror elements in brilliant and unique ways. The game’s developer, Red Barrels, announced a sequel in October 2014. For the most part, they’ve remained tight-lipped about the project. There are, however, a few things they’ve let us in on.

Same Universe, No Asylum

Outlast 2 Teaser
Upon announcing Outlast 2, Red Barrels co-founder Philippe Morin gave a few early-stage details about its story. While the sequel is set in the same universe as the first game, the setting and characters will be brand new. The story will connect back to the first game in some way, though Morin didn’t reveal how. Two teasers, one trailer, and one promotional image, have been released so far. Neither of them give much insight into the story, but it’s clear they take place in a very different setting from Mount Massive. “We might go back to Mount Massive Asylum one day,” Morin said, “but for now we have new ideas and themes we’d like to explore and we think we’re cooking up something special.”

Story Inspiration

Outlast Background

In a more recent interview, Morin shed some light on the game’s story. During development, Red Barrels drew inspiration from the Jonestown Massacre, the worst mass suicide in recorded history. Morin didn’t say how this inspiration shaped the game. He did say that the event was used to help recreate the same feelings of fear and vulnerability that the first game instilled in players. This gives us a sense of the sequel’s premise and setting: a story ripe with looming hopelessness and dread.

Outlast Expanded

Outlast Background 2

Red Barrels has been understandably (though deviously) sketchy on Twitter when it comes to Outlast 2. The questions tweeted to them are answered with tidbits at best. Amidst this ambiguity, there are a few definite conclusions we can reach. Red Barrels has confirmed that the sequel will be longer than the first game. Running and hiding from enemies will also remain in the mix, with a few other surprises in store. It’s clear that Red Barrels is building upon the first game’s style and taking it in a new direction.

Outlast 2 is slated for release this coming fall. We have a while to go before we even get another peek at the game, and Red Barrels is fine with that. The time they put into the first game was well worth it. “We really want to keep on improving our craft,” Morin said. He and his team have one end goal: “to make a game we’re scared to play ourselves.”


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