31 Days Of Halloween: Blair Witch
I was in middle school when the original The Blair Witch film released, and though it was definitely freaky, it didn't necessarily impact me at the moment. The weird thing was that there was a subtle residual effect on me that left me feeling haunted by the movie. All of a sudden, I had an irrational bedtime fear that as soon as I fell asleep, I would “wake up” in a sleepwalking state and make my way to the middle of a dark, decrepit forest before ACTUALLY waking up and having no clue as to my whereabouts (in my pajamas, no less).
As such, I have a complicated relationship with The Blair Witch franchise. I’m highly fascinated by the lore and horror element that the series has to offer, but I’m too much of a chicken to watch any of the other movies for fear of re-upping my adolescent fears. That said, I am incredibly intrigued with playing Blair Witch… I kind of wish I wasn’t.
Developed by Bloober Team - a studio known for its titles within the horror genre such as Layers of Fear, Observer, and the upcoming (terrifying-looking) title, The Medium - Blair Witch follows the story Ellis Lynch, a police officer and veteran who is searching for missing boy in the Black Hills forest of Burkittsville, Maryland, along with his trusted furry companion, Bullet.
As a psychological survival horror, the majority of gameplay appears to rely heavily on, basically, just making good decisions. Although the game is played from a first-person perspective, Blair Witch looks like it goes all-in on the survival aspect - a la survival horror titles like Outlast - leaving playing with only a flashlight, cell phone, and handful of other non-weapons, relying only on the services of Bullet.
I think therein lies the only thing that’s truly holding me back from playing Blair Witch. I don’t think I’d be able to handle watching anything bad happen to my canine companion. I’ve admittedly avoided spoilers for the game for the story itself, but mainly so as to not learn the fate of Bullet. The game features multiple endings, which is great for replayability… but that HAS to mean that something bad happens to Bullet in one of the endings, right?
Truth be told, I’m probably going to play Blair Witch this month, if not for anything other than scaring the pants off me. It may end up being a terrible decision for me, but it’s hard to pass up a game that made me feel dread just from watching the trailer alone.