USG Game of the Month: Amnesia: Rebirth

USG Game of the Month: Amnesia: Rebirth

Frictional Games's deeply unsettling horror game stands out in an otherwise underwhelming month.

Tomorrow is Halloween, so it's only appropriate that October's best game is a horror game. That would be Amnesia: Rebirth, which Khee Hoon Chan praised as a "different kind of horror" in their review, and is our Game of the Month for October 2020.

The latest game in the very popular Amnesia series, starting back in 2010 with The Dark Descent, Amnesia: Rebirth relies on the slow burn of psyhological horror more than jump scares, suffusing it with a thick atmosphere of dread. It's a horror game that's about the build-up as much as the scare itself.

Khee Hoon Chan writes of this experience, "Rebirth's nightmarish spaces and Tasi's anxiety are such constant reminders of your impending danger that any discordant note or sign will swiftly shove your heart into your throat. Like being trapped in the noxious belly of a malevolent beast, the scorching Algerian desert feels actively antagonistic, a tumorous slosh of natural and body horror that threatens to digest and consume you whole."

These strengths make Amnesia: Rebirth a clear standout in what has otherwise been a flawed month for releases. The largest of them, Watch Dogs: Legion, has been praised for its creativity, but otherwise largely panned. Star Wars: Squadrons started off strong, but its flawed multiplayer has largely killed its momentum. FIFA is FIFA.

November will be a much larger month for releases, as major games like Assassin's Creed: Valhalla and Yakuza: Like a Dragon battle for attention on next-gen consoles. But in the meantime, let's take the time to appreciate this smaller, but no less unsettling, experience from Frictional Games. Heaven knows that we have plenty of real-world fears to contend with; in a way, that makes facing Amnesia's fictional monsters kind of a relief.


USgamer Game of the Month List for 2020

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Kat Bailey

Editor in Chief

Kat Bailey is a former freelance writer and contributor to publications including 1UP, IGN, GameSpot, GamesRadar, and EGM. Her fondest memories as a journalist are at GamePro, where she hosted RolePlayer's Realm and had legal access to the term "Protip." She is USgamer's resident mecha enthusiast, Pokemon Master, and Minnesota Vikings nut (skol).

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