Hello Neighbor just released its announcement trailer, and even just the trailer is unnerving in a way few games achieve.
You take control of a concerned neighbor as you try to enter a creepy recluse AI’s house to try to discover his dark secret– whatever that may be. But the creepy recluse himself will not make it easy for you. He can be distracted, to be sure, but you have to stay one step ahead of him if you want to succeed: Once he’s on your trail, he won’t come off it until he’s got you. The trailer even implies that all the progress you make is part of a grander design to lure you into a false sense of security– watch (below) what the player does, then rewatch the beginning actions of the AI.
The stealth-horror game’s design is paramount to the unsettling feeling you get from the game: From the outside, you’re in the suburbs in twilight, but because you need to break into this man’s house, you’re doing so when the street is abandoned– it feels like it’s just you and him. The man himself is a sweater-vest wearing, large chinned stereotype, but there’s something wide-eyed and unsafe about his demeanor and constant anxiety. And the game has smart music queues: When he passes by your view or comes after you, it kicks in with a note or a queasy song.
Russia-based developer Dynamic Pixels is doing good work, despite falling just short of a successful Kickstarter previously (tinyBuild Games picked up the slack on that front, recently famous for publishing CLUSTERTRUCK). Hello Neighbor comes out Summer 2017, but you can sign up for its alpha here.