2DARK – Hotline Gloomywood

REVIEW – I am not entirely sure what the aim of Mr. Frédérick Raynal’s was when he decided to direct and create 2DARK. The man is responsible for the original Alone in The Dark game from 1992. 2DARK seems to capitalize on that concept. A lone man trying to survive against crazy people, and otherworldly forces, all the while trying to uncover a conspiracy in the world. Meanwhile, 2DARK is about the mystery of disappearing children, and a detective is slowly uncovering a weird conspiracy surrounding them.


Sadly though while Alone in The Dark became a cult classic, and led to several sequels ( and that dreaded live action series), while 2DARK left me scratching my head as to what old Raynal thought when he released this in 2017. Ready your 9MM, and some booze, as we are about to jump into the world of 2DARK.

The Kids Aren’t Alright

Detective Smith’s evening was going pretty okay, he, and his wife plus the two kids were out camping in the middle of the woods. A bit of time passes, and Helen and the two kids go and walk around the forest a bit, only for Smith to hear their yelling, and finds that his wife has been murdered, and the two kids have been taken away. Seven years have passed, and Smith is now conducting his own investigation, no longer a detective, and living alone in his house in Gloomywood. The investigation kicks into high gear when more kids start going missing near the rundown Amusement Park. From that point Smith goes from all sorts of crazy places, to uncover the mysteries of the town, and also find his two children.

The story is generic, and also a bit over the top, as to how much gore is featured in the game, and the Saw Franchise had nothing on this title. It is gore for the sake of disturbing, which would work, but the clumsiness of the storytelling makes it just plain out of place. There’s so much of it that it does not mesh with the concept of a survival horror game. The town of Gloomywood seems to have more serial killers than all of Hollywood movies combined. I’m impressed as to how the US military would not nuke the place, or at least send in the national guard if every week or so many kids are gone missing.

An entirely weird story that does not mesh with the Survival horror theme.

Isometric Horror

The game is just below average, the style is okay, but none of the environments, characters, and even weapons pop. While this was a Kickstarter effort, I’m surprised by the level of quality this game has regarding graphics, as in barely any. It really feels like we are playing a 2D spin-off of Alone in The Dark as that is how great the pixelated characters look. Sound effects are meh, and the voice acting is okay during the cutscenes. The concept would work more of as a hand-drawn adventure title such as Monkey Island 3 was, as when I look at the promotional material, it looks better than the actual game (even if its only a few seconds).

The gameplay is pretty basic; you pick up objects by going over them and use items by selecting them in the inventory when near usable objects. An enemy will be highlighted when a shot can be made, or a melee attack can be done. Shadows and dark places are used to hide from the enemy, and also sneak attacks are encouraged for quick kills. You usually start with a gun, a flashlight, and a lighter (as a source of light and a save game item). Enemies will drop extra weapons, but most of the times sneaking around is encouraged.

The gameplay is pretty basic, but there is some minor tension to it, especially with some of the ambient music helping out the overall gameplay.

A Low-Budget Evil Within

In the end, this is a below average game, with an obscure story, and generic combat, plus the stealth is nothing special. If you have the patience and time for this go ahead, otherwise I would recommend a game called Party Hard.



+ Gorey as the Saw franchise
+ Fun stealth sections
+ Interesting story


– …That fails to live up to the concept
– Gameplay is too simple
– Graphics are horrible

Publisher: Bigben Interactive

Developer: Gloomywood

Genre: Survival Horror

Release date: March 17, 2017


Gameplay - 5.7
Graphics - 3.2
Story - 5.3
Music/Audio - 4.3
Ambiance - 6.8



A not too great return from the creator of Alone in The Dark. The concept falls flat due to the lack of budget and graphics.

User Rating: Be the first one !

Spread the love
Avatar photo
Bence is a Senior Staff Writer for our site. He is an avid gamer, that enjoys all genres, from Indie to AAA games. He mostly plays on the PS4 or on the laptop (since some indies get a preview build there faster). Loves obscure Japanese games that no one else dares to review on this site.

No comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

theGeek TV