If there’s one thing that’s annoying in films, television or games, it’s kids. Kids are annoying. They’re written into stories to add extra elements of stress, tension, and vulnerability but they’re rarely capable of any real acting because they’re kids. Fucking annoying. Perhaps the best thing about this game is that Amy is verbally challenged. She can’t speak. She doesn’t cry, she doesn’t whimper that she’s scared, and she doesn’t make any cute, cheeky comments that we’re supposed to d’awww and laugh at. But she does run away and hide from you, she can’t climb ladders, and she wanders into danger if you don’t hold her hand. Amy should be the most controller-throwing, rage-inducing feature in this game but she’s not. She’s really not.

At the beginning of the game we’re introduced to Amy and her apparent guardian Lana. There’s an awkward few moments with a ticket collector, a phone call with a bit of talk about a ‘center’ and how Amy is sick, and the impression is given that Lana has apparently ‘rescued’ Amy from this mysterious center. Amy draws a picture that hints at precognition and there’s suddenly an explosion in the distance that causes the train to crash. One blackout later and you, as Lana, wake up alone in a carriage rather worse for wear, step over a few gory dead bodies, and set out in search of Amy.

It’s acceptable. Mildly amusing. It makes you wonder what’s actually going on. The train station is dark, dirty and completely trashed, and mutated zombie-like creatures are roaming around trying to make you dead. The controls instantly feel clunky and combat is very basic but this is a survival horror stealth game and less responsive controls can add to panic levels and direct combat is less likely than sneaking and hiding. Always the optimist, me.

But optimism, and a ‘give it a chance’ attitude can only get you so far. Facial animation is poor, the voice acting kills any atmosphere the game could have had, the checkpoints are frustratingly far apart, puzzles are flat out boring and the one hit kills get old, fast, especially when they boot you back to one of the frustratingly far away checkpoints and you have to push all the buttons you just pushed, hide in all the cupboards you just hid in and collect all the key cards you just collected.

It seems like a good idea on the surface. The relationship between Lana and Amy had potential. Amy’s psychic abilities grow as glyphs are discovered on the walls and she gains powers that could add an element of fun were they not ridiculously irritating to select and aim. If Lana leaves Amy’s side she starts to become infected by the contaminated air and gets sick. Returning to Amy heals her completely. Interaction between the two seems genuinely caring at times and the chance for an absorbing, heartfelt story has unfortunately been crushed by flat, unimaginative gameplay, and repetitive dialogue and actions. Sitting and watching Lana slowly ‘click clack’ up a ladder or shimmy across a narrow ledge for what seems like the hundredth time is somehow mind-numbing and stressful all at once.







2 responses to “Amy”

  1. Johnny avatar

    I played the trial of this for about 15 minutes before I had to put it off. It’s awkward, ugly and boring.

    The caption on that last image is ace.

  2. Duncan avatar

    This game made my soul ache.

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