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New The Evil Within trailer shows playtesters’ reactions

Shinji Mikami’s new survival horror set to spook this October on PS3 & PS4

If you stop by our playtest lab, you’re likely to hear plenty of gasps, screams, and expletives. That’s because our testers are among the first to play The Evil Within — our new survival-horror game from the legendary Shinji Mikami and his team at Tango Gameworks.

The video above shows real reactions to players checking out the game in a dark room — the ideal setting for playing The Evil Within.

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To learn more about the process, we checked with External Usability Manager Stephanie Puri.

Can you talk about the playtest setup? Do you try to maximize the scare factor with any external factors?
Stephanie Puri: We like to test with no more than 5-6 people at a time with a game like The Evil Within, though our lab accommodates more than that. There is a lot to talk about after playing so we try to keep the groups small so we have time to probe deeper when discussing the player’s experience. We turn the lights down when players start because scary games are best played alone, in a dark room. We can do dark but not alone since we have multiple people on site for each test.

Everything the player does and says is recorded so we can share reactions directly with the development team. Nothing more clearly conveys the player’s experience than seeing them jump or hearing them gasp. We also spend a good amount of time talking with players so we can hear directly from them what their experience was like, then share the discussion video with the development team. This way the team hears it directly from players when they talk about the most intense, scary moments as well as where the game could be improved.

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What’s the absolute best reaction you’ve seen to someone playing The Evil Within?
Stephanie Puri: My favorite moment to watch is the first time players encounter the creature in the bloody room, the one from the trailers. Even the players that recognize the room and know what is coming have a reaction – we’ve seen everything from screams and jumps to a spectrum of foul language while running from it.

Does anyone ever tap the testers on the shoulder during gameplay accidentally and have a bad reaction from them?
Stephanie Puri: I wouldn’t call them bad reactions, but yes we startle players all the time. Players are very tense while playing and become focused on what they are doing. They forget they are in a room with other people and jump when they hear sounds in the room as well as when we tap their shoulder to get their attention. The only truly bad reaction we get is when we tell them it’s time to stop playing.

How can fans of Bethesda games participate in the playtest lab? Why should they participate?
Stephanie Puri: Play testers give the team valuable feedback and that has a huge impact on the final game. I often tell our testers that we make games, but their feedback makes our games better.

Testers that volunteer their time get a behind the scenes peek at what games in development are like. We pay our testers in games and swag. Some of it you can buy at the Bethesda store, some of it you can only get through play testing.

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The Evil Within will now terrify players right in the thick of Halloween season – releasing on 23rd October in Australia, and throughout Europe on 24th October 24th, 2014. With your pre-order of the game, you’ll receive The Fighting Chance Pack, which includes:

  •  Medical Kit – A vital health enhancement to enable Sebastian to fight on.
  •  Green Gel – Used to upgrade Sebastian’s attributes.
  •  Double Barrel Shotgun and Three Shells – A larger and more formidable shotgun than the regular shotgun, it’s useful for tight situations with multiple encroaching enemies.
  •  An Incendiary Agony Bolt – Capable of showering nearby enemies with damaging fire sparks.
  •  A Poison Agony Bolt – Will draw enemies towards it and poison them, allowing Sebastian time for a quick escape.

Stay tuned for new updates on The Evil Within — coming to both PlayStation 3 and 4 – this October.

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16 Comments
2 Author replies

Evil takes hold 24.10.2014 So not 29.08.14 as originally announced then.

zalwelgoedgaan 27 May, 2014 @ 15:27
1.1

That’s smart of them, I don’t think there are that many games coming out this fall.

*checks release schedule*

………..uh oh…

Matt Grandstaff 27 May, 2014 @ 16:27
1.2

Correct… it’s a new date now. Just in time for Halloween!

I think there’s about 5 games in October on my “Holy COW I NEED” list.
This is one of them, and is actually the only one I’d pre ordered (although Amazon lists its release as 29th August…) so far.

solarwind12 27 May, 2014 @ 15:47
3

Interesting story, am Really looking forwards to playing this game.
The story about play testers though, sounds like a four letter word to me, no not that one, Work!.. so how can you get a proper, more truer insight as to what it is you seem to be looking for?, personally i could see myself doing that test stuff, but after A games released, playing in my own home, at my leisure(as it should be) and i guess more importantly After i have played through the game once or twice, then hook up to the monitors etc and away you go, this kind of input maybe as, maybe more important than first impression info?.. not actually asking, sure there’ll be plenty who would do these inputs, anything to make a better xp. right?
So roll on October 24..

I haven’t read this article as I want the game to be full of surprises when I pick it up but I just saw an article headline on kotaku where the journo said she nearly threw up playing the game lol!

Fred Dutton 27 May, 2014 @ 17:38
4.1

I was fortunate enough to check the game out last week and can confirm it’s absolutely revolting. In a good way ;)

4.2

@above The thing is, not long ago, lots of press (not sony related) checked the game as well and said otherwise and that left me thinking if the game was actually that scary.

I know Mikami’s the “father” of survival horror games but he might have gone soft.

Guess we’ll have to wait and see.

5

People don’t need to be actors to stage something so I’m not convinced about those reactions, didn’t seem natural at all.

i think it’s more of that these people are scare easily, i’m a fan of horror games and movies and it takes a lot to scare me that is for sure.

vasl0_0lsav 27 May, 2014 @ 17:02
6

This game ( and all like it ) is crap! :(

solarwind12 27 May, 2014 @ 19:53
6.1

Will find out in October if this is, ‘ALL’ others like it however, don’t agree with that, plenty clones, like fps stuff, but there IS a few that are worthwhile, but each to their own.

7

Don’t really care about these trailers, they show us nothing…

Just hope Shinji returns to survival horror roots and give us some puzzles and tense moments, not lots of guns and monsters.

8

Talk about over dramatic! :/

Looking forward to the game though.

so cool :=) plz mor…….

Is the pre-order bonus mentioned here available also if we pre-order from the PS Store or it’s for retail copies only?

11

man never heard of this game but it looks awesome. ill definitely buy.

DuquesneWhistle 28 May, 2014 @ 08:05
12

This reminds me a lot of the Paranormal Activity trailer, which wasn’t scary at all. Looking foward to it anyway, I would have loved a late summer release though.

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