Dark Deception is a story-driven, first-person, fast-paced horror maze game. With the last update, it has four chapters (out of a total of five) released.
As the player, our ultimate objective is to acquire a mystical ring that will grant us one wish. To do this, we have to go through mazes and collect soul shards to get ring pieces and combine them into the aforementioned wish-granting ring. Simple. Of course, simple doesn’t always mean easy, and getting all the soul shards will be quite a task and we won’t even know how the story ends until the release of the 5th chapter.
Basically, it’s like Pac-Man 3D but more complicated and interesting. Each level introduces different powers, monsters with unique abilities and mechanics, boss fights, and visuals. After completing the level, you get a rating depending on soul shard streak, time taken to complete the level, secrets revealed, and how many times you died. A perfect rating unlocks parts of the lore which might impact the story in Chapter 5.
- The visuals are amazing, with the levels fascinating to look at and explore. I’d say that the visuals and the ambiance only improve with each new level. Absolutely amazing. The level design is smart; you rarely get in a situation where you end up in a dead end, and most of the deaths you’ll likely experience would be due to poorly managing your power or pathing.
- The powers are fun to play with and the new ones are pretty good. Mechanics-wise, it’s a job well done. Each level forces you to use your new powers in order to complete it, which is a pretty smart incentive for the player to get accustomed to their wide array of abilities.
- The voice acting and character models are impressive. This chapter makes it even more so with great voice acted cutscenes and a funny intro section to the action.
- This game has a ton of replayability since you get rewards for completing a level with a perfect score. Trying to get that perfect S Rank will give you a couple of hours more of gameplay and probably more than a fair share of frustration along the way.
- Bierce has big booba and you get to see under the nurse’s skirt for the whole cutscene…I mean, if you’re into that.
- A ton of little annoying bugs in the last chapter, some of them game-breaking. In the video, you can see a playthrough of Torment Therapy and the game crashed a couple of times during that. Maybe you can chalk the problem up to the chapter just being released, but it’s still unfortunate as this was in development for about 2-3 years.
- With how long it took to release the last chapter, the 5th one might only come out at the end of 2025, which leaves us with an unfinished storyline and incomplete lore for quite some time.
- The pacing gets worse with each level. It’s supposed to be a fast-paced horror game. Sitting through 20 minutes of intro scenes completely destroys that pace. Even though they are funny and a lot of work was put into them, they still shouldn’t slow the game down as much.
Overall, I’d say that the game is still impressive. The new levels are amazing and they get better, scarier, harder, pose more challenges, and introduce better boss battles. BUT the pacing only gets worse compared to previous entries, especially if you want to get 100% completion and replay levels for a better score. I’d like to rate Dark Deception 5 nurses / 10 due to the number of game-breaking bugs, but it really is an incredible game. As soon as they get the bugs fixed, I’d score it as 9.2 crazy monkeys / 10 easily.