You and your three mystery solving friends thought that it would be a good idea to go hunting for eight tape recorders across six different locales in Europe. When your friends heard that it would be dark out, no one showed up but you. They can still come along mind you, but for now you’re all alone with your flashlight in the darkness. You’re never truly alone though. The one that has caused the grizzly murders is here with you, stalking you, watching you with its eyeless face.
Its a nightmarish feeling to be stuck in a realm of darkness whether its a forest with a stream, a museum full of mummies and giant heads, an underground bunker with a submarine and so on. The only accessory on you is a flashlight with a narrow beam. Your feet feel covered in tar. It takes dozens of steps to move the slightest distance. You can run, but when you do, your flashlight sticks to the ground so its tough to gauge just how fast you’re going or where you’re going.
The one that watches you lights up the immediate area with its luminescent body so you can always see it. Every time it appears, its like metal scraping against metal to send a shiver up your weak and cowardly spine. Your only salvation is to look away and hope it leaves you in peace. If your friends were here, perhaps they could distract it, but no, you’re here by yourself. Every moment you stare at its pale white figure you gain its attention more. Tension rise knowing that even if its far away in the distance, any second it can be right in your face. Look away! It wants your eyes.
Searching in the darkness, you hear static to gain your interest. You must be close to a tape recorder. How these things are still playing, you’ll never know. The sound grows in its intensity as you pace around a stone figure looking for it. Your flashlight shines to it no matter where you were pointing it originally. There it is, the first of many you’ll need to find before you can call it a night.
More darkness, panting as you run and screams from being watched from closer distances. Can it see you or is it as blind as its eyeless face dictates? You turn around to see where it is, if its still following you, but its gone for now. If you had friends with you, perhaps it is after them. Your own skin saved for one of theirs.
Sound in the shadows kicks up in the darkness again, you approach a jade stone. There must be a tape recorder behind it or around it. The green glows in your flashlight’s gaze. Static blurs your vision and makes you tremble as your sanity slips away. There must be something special about the jade stones. Have you seen them before in the distance? Seated on the ground, growing out of a museum wall? Are they mere stones or are they the hard shelled cocoons of a viscous blind monster with teeth and claws?
Each night you go out, you feel the same, but you’re a different person. You look different, but you’ll never know outside of how you feel. Sometimes you feel brave, other times you feel swift or you have more stamina or less. Your name was Sarah last night, but tonight its Kurt. These bodies you inhabit look bright compared to the night’s gloom you find yourself in. Its good to be a different person every night, because that’s how you tell your friends apart, assuming they had ever shown up. All of it feels so irrelevant the differences between this body and the last are minimal even if something says you’re special and unique. Perhaps its best that you’re alone. Your friend Frank would probably mess it up with his blue hair and skeleton costume. You’re all just bodies to the creature.
Use wisdom and courage to make it through night after night, avoiding the pale white figure that illuminates the darkness. Tuck your fears away to make it through to the next area of your choosing. Perhaps some other night your friends will join you. No one ever comes with you. Its all up to you to endure the startling scares and the shrill shrieks.
When its all over, you and your friends that never showed up are either victorious and can leave or dead at the hands of a ruthless beast that snatches you up one by one. As you cross over into what lies beyond, your steps are recounted and traced with lines across an empty sheet of paper along with how much time you survived. Was it a few seconds? Ten minutes? Thirty? You can survive indefinitely with large dark locales and only one demon hunting you.
Well now that the ambiance is over, its time to kill it with a real review. White Noise is a first person experience that has you searching for tape recorders across six different maps. White Noise Online is indeed online and sold in four packs at a slight discount, because you’ll never find anyone playing when you are. In fact some of us would rather play alone in general. It would still be interesting seeing other people and their quirky characters like Frank with his blue hair and skeleton outfit and the Invisible Man or woman running around. It would probably ruin feeling of terror.
The maps are all flat and pitch black with no light other than your flashlight They each have their unique themes and while I feel there’s a good amount of detail and the textures look fair to good, other games look better and have more detail. It feels like they put effort into adding details to make an area feel less bland, but it still feels lacking.
The characters each have flare and color to them that feels cheap yet still elaborate with a good amount of detail. Its the art style of the characters that works against the creepy vibe the game has. Some of the art choices outside the game are unfitting for a game like this.
The underground bunker feels hastily thrown together and bland even if it had jail cells, train cars and a submarine in it. There’s no way to go in any of them but the cells. The rest of the map just feels so vacant and empty and that’s the case for the majority of the maps. Perhaps that’s because the movement speed is so slow that it can take an excessively long time just to walk to the nearest door.
There are a lot of frills White Noise Online has that other contemporaries are lacking. The post game recap is good. The game tells you how to play and what your objective is. It lets you select a map or have one chosen at random. There are even difficulty levels before you head into a game.
The music and sounds set a good creepy tone. The sounds add a lot of shock value when seeing the creature and having sound cues for the tape recorder ensure that you can find it when you’re close enough. Again, it feels like a step above other games that make it feel like the developers care and have the ability to go the extra step.
I’m on the fence with White Noise Online whether I should recommend it. Its a good game and above a lot of similar ones with the same objective. Its also cheap so that’s always a push in the right direction. If you have friends with it that are willing to play, that’s the only way you’ll be able to play online.