Friday the 13th, The Game Review

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , on October 6, 2017 by Lilliandra Winters

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Developer: IllFonic
Released: May 26th, 2017
Platforms: PC, Xbox One, PS4

I’d like to tell you that this is going to be a calm and observant review of a horror game, but it won’t be. Why? Because this game is my shit. I’ve been playing the game for MONTHS and WILL NOT STOP ANY TIME SOON.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s talk about the game. I was interested in it from the moment I saw it. I wasn’t able to get in on the Kickstarter, unfortunately, but I got the game and that is all that matters.

It is the early 80s, you are a councilor at a summer camp. All of the kids have gone home for the summer and it’s just you and the other counselors for a couple days before you return home. One evening, between your premarital sex, drinking and marijuana smoking, JASON APPEARS OUT OF FUCKING NO WHERE AND MURDERS SOME GUY YOU’VE NEVER MET. Five minuets later, you collect yourself and it’s time to survive.

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Fucking Chad

You can play as either a counselor or Jason. Matches consist of 8 players, 1 killer and 7 survivors. If you are a survivor, your goal is pretty simple. Survive for 20 minutes, escape the map using the car or police, or kill Jason. If you are Jason, your goal is to kill everyone.

There is a character for everyone. I haven’t played them all because AJ is my favorite. She has a high stealth and high repair skill. These are most important to me. She runs like a pack a day smoker, which would fit the character. I did play Tiffany for a bit because of her high stamina, but she is awful at repair and that is constantly what I am trying to do. Fix the phone or fix the car and GTFO. There are several female and male characters, with ethnic and social range. Just don’t play Chad. I can’t stand Chad.

You can use earned points to buy perks as either killer or survivor. Characters unlock as you play the game. You can also unlock different movie versions of Jason, each with different strengths and weaknesses. You can buy different kills as Jason and perks as counselors. Perks range from a faster arrival time with the police, a chance that Jason won’t notice you in a building, easier repairs, faster sprints and more. The possibilities are huge. Each come at different levels (common to legendary) and can have different pros and cons (like a boost to your sprint, but a reduction in stamina).

As a counselor, you can change your clothing some. The more you play a specific character, the more you unlock.

There are various ways to survive as a counselor. You can work together or lone wolf it to survive. You can find the phone fuse and repair the phone box to call the cops. You can repair one of the two cars, a two-seat or four-seat vehicle. They both need a set of keys, gas and a battery installed. (Who is taking the batteries out of cars in this damn camp?) When repaired, you can hop in and hope to escape before you are stopped. In the same vein, you can repair and escape in the boat (not all matches have boats, though). You can survive the entire 20 mins without being killed or you can kill Jason. I named each of them in order of ease (in my opinion). Calling the cops and waiting, at most 5 mins, feels like the easiest when there are plenty of other people to distract him.

The car is up in the air and can require cooperation. Surviving is hard if the killer isn’t new to the game and I have yet to kill Jason, however I will fix that soon. To kill him, you need to have knocked off his mask, a female must be wearing a dusty old sweater that can be found in Jason’s shack (hidden somewhere on the map) and Tommy Jarvis must have the machete. Or so I’ve been told.

Can’t believe I forgot about Tommy. You will find a radio in the camp, using it gives you the ability to alert Tommy Jarvis. When people escape or die, there is a chance one can come back as Tommy. He is pretty handy at everything (straight 10s on all skills) and comes with a shot gun, map and walkie talkie.

20170622103917_1Maybe people think that Jason has too much power over the counselors and use it to criticize the game, but I disagree. I find it hard to kill the counselors as Jason. There are many factors against you and I can’t use the shift power well. I only play basic Jason and recently got my first 8/8 kills.

As Jason, you have 4 abilities. You can stalk (the music won’t play when you are near your victim), you can shift (become incorporeal and dash around, popping up behind people), you can sense where people are (making buildings bright red if someone is in them) and you can morph to any spot on the map. As plain Jason, I also have an ax and some traps, and I can pick up knives from around the camp and throw them at people.

You have four different executions, if you’ve spent your points on them, and once you grab someone, you can chose one of those ways to kill (choked to death, axed in half, jaw ripped out, etc). There are environmental kills, also. You can crush their skull against a wall, drown them in a toilet, impale them with a bird bath and straight up drown them in the lake. (Oh, the murderous possibilities!)

I will note that I am disappointed that there isn’t word yet about Pamela being a killer option at the moment. She was in an underachieved stretch goal for their Kickstater, but I want to see her soon.

That is the basics of the game. It’s difficult to master and oh so much fun to play. Kill your friends, kill strangers, kill everyone! I love this game and I play it weekly. I’ve made friends because of this game. It is easily one of my favorites, but it’s far from perfect.

Before you go shelling out $40, let’s chat about the cons.

The community isn’t great at all. I wouldn’t go as far as to call it Overwatch toxic, but there are some salty players out there. They can make the experience pretty awful. I typically mute everyone that I don’t know personally when entering a match for several reasons. First, so I don’t have to hear their cursing, nonsense, racists/sexist hateful bullshit. Second, because hearing 8 year olds play this game disturbs the fuck out of me. Finally, the lobbies aren’t separated by native language. No matter how much I don’t mind playing with someone from say Russia, if we can’t speak to each other, there isn’t a point.

Let’s also talk about the assholes who are so salty that they got killed by Jason that they will leave the match mid-execution, meaning that the Jason player doesn’t get points for the kill. If you do this, you are going to the deepest, darkest level of Hell full of atrocities that even I can’t fucking imagine. Or they will leave before the end of the game, which is just annoying as fuck, especially when you’ve got no one to come back as Tommy Jarvis.

There is currently no way to report people in game. Of course, in-game reporting can also be a slippery slope of abuse by salty players. Oh, and don’t get me started on those assholes that use the car to run over other players. The only deterrent is a loss of 1000 exp, which, honestly, they don’t give a crap about. How about match timers? Killed a teammate? Can’t match up for 30 mins!

friday-the-13th-game-4The game is also buggy as hell. Not horribly so at the moment, but enough to cause issues in game play. I’ve been bugged out and killed when I shouldn’t have been, my hair has gone wonky and there are plenty of disconnects. Nothing so major that I won’t play. I will, however, protest the choice of colors for AJ’s bathing suits (available in the Summer DLC). They all have pink in them. Seriously, wtf? She’s GOTH.

Should you get this game? Hells yes! If you can afford the $40 price point, go for it. It’s a great game with endless amount of fun, and hey, you can kill your friends. Do you play the game? Who would you like to see make an appearance? Is Freddy Kruger a viable option for the game? Let us know in the comments below!

WintersOver4

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Together Forever (Short Story)

Posted in Short Story with tags , , , , , on October 4, 2017 by Xander Woolf

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By: Xander Woolf

He broke up with me. I can’t believe he broke up with me. No, I won’t believe it. He can’t break up with me. I love him too much. It’s not fair. My love burns eternal. There’s absolutely no way I’m letting him break up with me. NO.

He will be with me and only me. I’ll make sure of that. I just need a few things to… convince him.

First thing’s first, I need to learn his schedule down to the second. That way, I can figure out the best possible time to approach him and bare my heart. I’ll wait outside his house in the morning and mark down the exact time he leaves for work. Then I’ll sneak into the building so I can keep an eye on him. I need to protect him from all the whores that he works with.

Second, I’ll need some rope. If he won’t listen to reason, then I’m going to have to make sure he can’t get away so I can tell him everything I absolutely need to say. I need to make sure he’ll hear me. I should get some duct tape, too. That way he’ll have to listen without talking over me, like he always liked to do.

Hmmm. Maybe I should pick up some knives, too. That’ll be fun. I can play, maybe scare him a little bit. I bet he’ll find that such a turn on. We’d talked about knife play before, but never got the chance to do it. Oh, he’ll love the idea. Once I’ve convinced him to be with me forever, I’ll bring out the knives.

Yes.

This plan is brilliant. It has to work. And if it doesn’t… Well, if it doesn’t, I don’t know what I’ll do.

***

Oh, there you are now. Perfect timing, there, my love. Have I ever told you that you look so cute in your suit and tie? With your little briefcase. I could just eat you up, you’re so adorable.

That’s right, come a little closer.

Oh, now don’t struggle. You’ll just make this harder for both of us if you struggle. We both know you’re stronger than me, but I came prepared.

See? That’s why you don’t struggle. When you wake up, you’ll be so surprised.

God, you’re heavy. When did you get to be so heavy?

I’m sorry I have to tie you up in the trunk, but I can’t risk you misunderstanding me and leaving. You need to hear everything I have to say, otherwise none of this is worth it.

***

Oh, good, you’re awake. I was starting to worry. Oh, no no no. Don’t struggle. You’ll hurt yourself if you do that. Those ropes are tied pretty tightly. I also bolted the chair to the floor to make sure you can’t fall over. I’m so thoughtful, I know.

Stop trying to scream through your duct tape. Nobody is going to hear you and it’s getting a little annoying. Besides, if you keep trying to scream, you won’t hear what I have to say.

HEY.

I asked you nicely to stop screaming. Look what you made me do. I can’t concentrate if you’re screaming, baby. I brought you here for a reason. I’m sorry for my outburst, but I just need to say what I came here to say.

What’s that noise? Is that your cell phone?

It is! Who’s calling at this hour?

Who’s Jackie Lane?!

You have a date with someone already?

Oh, no no no no no. Not on my watch. How did I miss that? I’ve been so vigilant.

We were supposed to be together forever.

Who the fuck is Jackie Lane?!

No no no.

We were supposed to be together forever.

If I can’t have you, Jackie Lane certainly can’t.

Oh no no no.

We were supposed to be together forever.

Why do you make me do these things to you? All this blood.

We were supposed to be together forever.

And now we can be.

Top 10 Things that Scare The Bejeezus out of Xander

Posted in List with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 28, 2017 by Xander Woolf

Growing up, I was a scared kid. I mean, I was scared of everything. Put me in a dark room, near a clown, around some bugs, and I was a crying, blubbering mess. Every single night I went to sleep, I would think, “Tonight’s the night the ghost is gonna decide to get me.”

I forced my siblings to leave the bathroom light on so it would pour into my bedroom. Nightlights weren’t enough. It had to be the bathroom light or my bedroom light. I slept in a fully lit room for about a year in middle school.

It was bad.

Now, I’ve tamed those irrational fears.

Well… most of them.

Check out what I’m scared of now.

Continue reading

Why I couldn’t finish “The Curse of Sleeping Beauty” (2016)

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 14, 2017 by Xander Woolf

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Supposedly based on the Grimm fairy tale “Briar Rose,” The Curse of Sleeping Beauty follows Thomas, a reclusive artist who consistently dreams of a beautiful sleeping woman that he just can’t wake up. When he inherits a property that’s been in his family for generations, his nightmares become real. He has to free Briar Rose from her prison in order to free himself from the property.

It sounds like it could be a beautiful story… if done right.

The movie was so awful, though, we couldn’t even finish it. We got about half-way through and turned it off. This is actually a big deal for Winters and me. In our entire friendship, we’ve only ever turned off three movies.

It’s especially a big deal for me given that I love bad horror movies. I’ll watch bad horror until the cows come home, but I couldn’t finish The Curse of Sleeping Beauty. Here’s why.

1) The acting was atrocious. While the actors were all beautiful in their own right, they weren’t right for the roles. Ethan Peck, at first, seemed perfect for a reclusive artist role. As the movie went on, however, it became obvious that Thomas was supposed to care about both Briar Rose and Linda, the woman helping him learn more about the mysterious property. Ethan Peck, however, continued with his emotionless character, causing his lines to fall flat. India Eisley, who played Briar Rose, was gorgeous in her outfit, but could have spent more time with a dialect coach. Her English accent was reminiscent of that of a teenager pretending to be “posh.” Finally, Natalie Hall’s Linda attempted to be the comic relief, but the delivery of her lines combined with the overall feel of the movie made that attempt fall short. We felt as though each of these actors was only hired because of their good looks.

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2) The script was just bad. The acting probably would have been better if the script was better written. Instead, there were lines that made no sense and major plot holes. Not only that, but near the middle of the movie, the plot changed from straight horror fantasy, where one or two people deal with an evil force, to an ensemble let’s-tackle-this-together movie. The dynamic completely changed when the two extra characters were added. Thomas and Linda were all that were needed, in my opinion.

3) They mixed several cultures together. This goes along with bad script writing, but deserves a point all to its own. The Sleeping Beauty story is of French origin. The movie takes place in America (I think!). All the characters seem to be American or Canadian, with the exception of Briar Rose, who is supposedly British. Richard (Bruce Davison), shows up in a car with a European license plate. And, finally, when they determine what the actual curse is, they reveal that it’s Middle Eastern… Dear writers, pick one and stick to it!

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While those are my three big points, there were a lot of little points as well. Let’s call it nitpicks. First, Thomas’ uncle supposedly lived in the mysterious house for 40 years, but it looked like it hadn’t been lived in for quite a long time. Second, Thomas at one point says he just wants to get out of this “godforsaken town,” but there was no introduction of the town itself or Thomas’ interaction with it. Finally, there’s a scene where a bunch of mannequins are attacking Thomas and Linda, attempting to protect the secret of the house from outsiders, and I was just reminded of an episode of Doctor Who, which took me right out of the story.

I didn’t see the ending, but absolutely nothing could have made this movie worth it. I assume Briar Rose turned out to be evil and they had to defeat her. Otherwise, they never would have introduced Linda as Thomas’ other love interest. I also assume that the 53 people who had gone missing on the property were the people inside the mannequins. But, hey, I could be wrong.

Watch it for yourself and tell me your thoughts in the comments below!

9th Circle of Horror Returns

Posted in Uncategorized on July 7, 2017 by Xander Woolf

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Hey, Horror Fans!

I know, it’s been awhile.

Don’t you worry, though. We’re not going anywhere.

We had some hiccups. Depression mixed with busy schedules do not mix well.

But we’re back.

And we have some exciting stuff in the works.

So stay tuned and be sure to keep checking back on your sleepless Friday nights for reviews.

Sleep tight.

wolfout

Review: Stranger Things (TV Show)

Posted in Review on March 10, 2017 by Lilliandra Winters

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Created by: Matt and Ross Duffer
Starring: Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Finn Wolfhard

Welcome to the 1980’s! Full of Dungeons & Dragons, nerds, awkward telephones and Stranger Things!

Netflix continues to nail original show after original show and Stranger Things is no exception. Filled with an amazing cast, great effects, a killer story line and all the nostalgia of my childhood, I was glued to my television. In one season, I ranged every emotion I could think of and a few new ones that I’m not sure how to deal with. I don’t know that I have a negative thing to say about it. In fact, if you haven’t watched it and are mildly curious, stop reading this right now and go binge watch. Come back when you’re done.

I’ll wait.

Done yet? Ok, great! For those of you who haven’t seen it and still aren’t sure, I have no idea what you are waiting for. Hands down, Netflix is one of the few services that I pay for that I feel actually earns my money (and may even deserve a little more). From Daredevil, Jessica Jones and now Luke Cake, you had me at Marvel, but Stranger Things is truly original and more beautiful than the Mona Lisa. Sorry, Mona.

This epic tale starts out like all of them should, with a bunch of nerdy kids playing Dungeons & Dragons in a basement. By far not the best DM out there, they are having a blast fighting monsters until it’s time to call it quits for the night. Of course, that is when it all goes downhill.

Will, who is the bravest motherfucker around, disappears and the town starts their search and turn up with nothing after nothing. His mother starts to look crazy while his older brother tries to keep everything together and hold out hope for his brother’s return. All of Will’s friends are frantic to find him, but they find someone else instead: Eleven, a mysterious girl with powers, answers and enough social awkwardness to make me proud.

This tale unravels in the most elegant way; it is beautifully complicated. Just when you think you know what’s going on, they pull the rug out from under you and you are left staring at the ceiling wondering what just happened. You feel such a range of emotions for so many different characters that, at some points, you are left just an emotional mess hoping that everyone will have their happy ending, and that some people will get what they deserve.

I’m not even gonna talk about Barb.

The cast of characters fills quickly with Will’s friends, Will’s family, and unsuspecting members of the town just trying to get by in their everyday life. It’s full of insanity, dysfunction and confusion, but in the best way. I want to sit here and tell you about this show all day, reveal every goosebump, each moment I yelled at the TV, each time I was at the edge of my sit and starting a new episode, even if I was exhausted. However, I won’t. This show is the puzzle box, it’s so much that I don’t even know where to start and I would never finish.

At the end of the season, I was emotionally drained, happy it was over but wanting more at the same time. I hope you go and watch it, come out on the end as distraught as I feel and just as happy to have watched it as I am.

Review: Don’t Breathe (2016)

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 3, 2017 by Xander Woolf

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Written and Directed by: Fede Alvarez
Starring: Stephen Lang, Jane Levy, Dylan Minnette

What’s it about?
Three amateur thieves (Levy, Minnette, Daniel Zovatto) devise a plan to steal $300,000 from a disabled veteran (Lang) living in a house in an abandoned neighborhood in Detroit. The plan goes wrong, however, when they find they’re stuck in a house with a trained killer.

What did I think?
These kids are dumb. I can’t express how dumb these kids are. First of all, the man may be blind, but blind people can hear and smell really, really well. Don’t take your shoes off and certainly don’t take steps backwards if you’re not absolutely sure there’s not a creaky floor board. Secondly, the man’s a veteran. He’s not going to be defenseless, even if he is disabled. He had four locks on his front door for Christ’s sake.

I can’t say I was really scared during this movie. The people in danger broke into a house in a Stand Your Ground state. Of course the owner’s going to use deadly force to defend himself, his money, and the girl he’s got tied up in the basement. You can’t just walk in with one pistol and think you’ll be alright. I had no empathy for the main characters, so I found that I didn’t care what happened to them. This made the jump scares and the general suspense far less effective.

I’d much rather see the story of the girl he had tied up. Sure, he explained it, but that’s a far scarier situation to be in. Make that movie. Don’t try to make me empathize with a bunch of burglars who should know full well they’re in a Stand Your Ground state. He had every legal right to kill the intruders in his home, regardless of whether or not he has a hostage in the basement.

The acting was pretty good, though, despite the premise. Though, to be honest, not a lot of talking happened in this movie. The few times the main characters did talk (which, of course, was at the worst times), they were immediately bombarded with a bullet. They barely even had full conversations during the exposition, which I can get behind. The less talking, the less any particular actor can ruin a scene. Though, they all did facial expressions really well. And, because they had to be quiet to avoid this killer, there was no fake horror movie scream. Thank you for that, Fede Alvarez.

Do I recommend it?
Yeah, it’s pretty much just like every other horror movie, so you might as well go watch it. The main characters make bad decisions, so at least it’s a good opportunity to yell at your screen, if you haven’t done that in awhile.