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iPad  header logo

In Fear I Trust


For: iPad   Also on: iPhone

Boo

Product: In Fear I Trust | Developer: Black Wing Foundation | Publisher: Chillingo | Format: iPad | Genre: Adventure, Puzzle | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
 
In Fear I Trust iPad, thumbnail 1
In Fear I Trust owes a debt to The Room. It's another spooky game about pottering around creepy environments, lining your pockets with keys and bits of switches to help you solve cryptic puzzles.

But it misses one vital element that Fireproof absolutely nailed: those elegant, finger-friendly controls.

Instead, you can move about the world with a pair of sluggish and unwieldy analogue sticks, or a cumbersome tap-to-move and swipe-to-look system that is swamped in path-finding bugs.

These poor controls make the game a chore to play, which means you'll want to spend less time experimenting with ideas and looking for clues, and more time on Google getting the puzzle solutions so you can just move on.

Fear is the mind killer

Which is a shame, as some of the puzzles are quite well put together. But, those are few and far between.

Many are too easy - puzzles that need an item show you an obvious silhouette of the intended object. And items that you can pick up stick out like shiny sore thumbs among the dour, discoloured backdrops.

Others are obtuse and abstract, and sometimes even come with clues that are completely misleading and make simple puzzles seem frustratingly hard. Some are lifted directly from The Room.

There's also a 'Retrospection mode', which you activate by pinching the screen. In this mode, you can see ghostly images and hidden messages and clues for upcoming puzzles, but also exact solutions for other puzzles.

It's never clear what stuff in Retrospection mode has to be seen to finish the game, and what stuff is just telling you the answer to a puzzle you could solve through other means, which means I cheated my way through a few brainteasers without even realising it until it was too late.

Trust me, I'm a doctor

The more I think about it, the more it becomes clear that In Fear I Trust is all about valiantly attempting to emulate The Room, but just missing the mark.

It's got detailed 3D graphics - this time using Unreal Engine - but they're not quite as shiny and polished as Fireproof's game, and you're forced to sit through a monstrously long loading screen every time you play.

And it's got a similar spooky atmosphere, but In Fear I Trust comes off as clichéd. It's all botched surgeries, insane asylums, spooky schools, distorted voices, ghostly aspirations, and jump scares. Nothing we haven't seen before.

In Fear I Trust also has a story, but it's mostly nonsensical. Maybe it would make more sense if you took the time to read the hundreds of notes and diaries and journals and scraps of paper, and listened to all the audio diaries. I didn't.

In Fear I Trust is a short, muddled escape-the-room puzzler that has a lot to like, but sadly falls at every hurdle. For every satisfying puzzle, there are three that are fumbled in the execution. It's got a creepy atmosphere, but it's all well worn horror tropes. And it has rooms you want to explore, but controls you want to murder.
 
In Fear I Trust
Reviewer photo
Mark Brown | 31 January 2014
In Fear I Trust could have been a worthy entry to the creepy escape-the-room genre, but it's let down by poor controls, fumbled puzzles, and tired horror clichés
 
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