Texas Chainsaw Massacre is the licensed game presented at the end of last year’s The Game Awards. Developers since then regularly publish new development news, and today they talk about some info on the stealth of the game and future content that will come.


STEALTH
There is a distinct sense of “cat and mouse” in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. Moments of tension abruptly ending with a clash of action, followed by, if the Victim is crafty enough, a return to the relative safety of being on the edge of another clash, having broken line of sight. Struggling to choke down heavy breaths within a hiding place as a Family member lurks in the next room, undoing all you have done to get away.


It’s a pretty common concept in Horror, build tension and release it. But the uncommon is found in how you build it, and how you release it. With The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, we know our Victims find themselves against all odds, in a situation with little to no resources, and seemingly all but done for. Desperation is a keyword as well as an overall tone to the game and with that, combat is not only unrealistic, it’s minimal and frantic. So what fills the gameplay in between your capture and escape or death? Stealth. But not of the variety you might find in a single player experience.

“A key point for us getting that authentic horror gameplay right was the multiplayer stealth mechanics, the biggest of which is visibility. With single player games against AI hunters, the rules on visibility are clear: you have vision cones, audio visual cues when spotted, and clear methods of resetting the hunt. These just didn't transfer fairly to a PvP setup. Hiding in the shadows from other players was something we worked hard on in the earliest of prototypes, ensuring it’s fair to both sides and without "gamey" mechanics.”


Once the team had started to explore the mechanics of stealth that worked well for the type of environment we were building, the iteration and refinement of these mechanics began, and the true moment to moment gameplay of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre became clearer.

A Family, set on letting not a single Victim free, actively working to reveal the areas of stealth leveraged by the Victims. The Victims, underequipped and outmatched, desperately trying to make it to the next room in a chain of movements that will hopefully result in freedom from the nightmare. Who will survive and what will be left of them?

“A lot of iteration took place during early prototypes to promote stealth as THE way to survive. We observed a lot of player behaviours that we wanted to embrace, one of which was "hiding in plain sight". Moving into the shadows, keeping still, and holding your nerve as a family member scours the environment is both terrifying and exhilarating. Taking the hiding in shadows a step further, we gave players on both sides the ability to turn on or off specific lights in the environment, dynamically changing hiding opportunities. Entering a dark room and turning on a nearby lamp, you quickly see victims scatter like cockroaches. Of course, we don't want to make things too easy for the family, so the victims have some tricks up their sleeve in these scenarios.”





3V4 MODE & NEW CHARACTERS

Asymmetrical, multiplayer horror is nothing new to Gun, creators of Friday the 13th: The Game. But working with a team of killers? Well, that’s a whole new world. While it is true that most folks seem to think of asymmetrical gameplay as 1 vs Many, in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, the family is an important part of the story to tell. How each member of the family works within the greater team, well that’s completely up to you. A deep metagame and progression system will give you the tools to pick your place at the family table.

“The original Texas Chain Saw Massacre sent shockwaves through the film industry when it was released in 1974. It was violent, gruesome, and downright uncomfortable to watch at times. It was a masterpiece in dread. A lesson in filmmaking that comes along once a decade, if we are lucky. As a young boy hiding in my basement secretly witnessing this terror unfold, I was both horrified and intrigued. Watching Sally, Kirk, Jerry, Pam, and Franklin try to survive the Slaughter family's deranged combination of horror and comedy was unlike anything I'd witnessed before. It was at that moment I became a lifelong TCSM fan, and to this day it's always been a dream of mine to work on the franchise. Now, nearly 50 years after the films' release, the fact that myself, along with my colleagues at Gun Interactive and Sumo Digital Nottingham, are tasked with creating a proper video game based on The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is surreal to say the least. This will be the first licensed game since 1983. And for a whole new generation, it will be their entry into the horror and macabre that left an impression on me so many years ago. To say this is an honor would be an understatement.”

Introducing new, original family members is not something Gun takes lightly, as authenticity is a key factor in everything we do. How can the team maintain authenticity while adding new elements to the original property?

“Working with Kim Henkel has obviously been incredible. He has placed an extreme amount of trust in our team to deliver an experience that matches the tone and authenticity of the legendary film he helped create all those years ago. In order to accomplish this task we felt it was paramount to focus on the one key aspect that separates Texas from most any other horror franchise in existence. This is of course the Slaughter family itself. You see, Texas doesn't feature a singular killer. Texas is different. Texas is all about family. The Cook, the Hitchhiker, and Leatherface all have specific jobs to do and roles to play. Without each other, the family simply couldn't exist and operate efficiently for very long. So when it comes to creating a multiplayer horror experience based on this film, we knew the family dynamic had to be a top priority. How they interact, how they work together, and how they all have specific strengths and weaknesses would be the basis of the killer experience.


There lies the tightrope at the heart of our game. Creating opportunities for you to feel like it is your Leatherface, or your Hitchhiker. Then creating new characters to fit seamlessly in with original favorites, while still focusing on accuracy and authenticity. But who are these new characters?

“Of course, it was quickly apparent that we would need additional family members in order to create the type of team-based multiplayer experience we were after. As interesting as The Cook, Hitchhiker, and Leatherface are, three killers simply wouldn't be enough to sustain the game for long periods of time. We needed more. Luckily, Kim Henkel came through again to help us solve this issue. Kim had several ideas for additional characters that never made it into the 1974 film, but ultimately he allowed us to create new Slaughter family members on our own. This level of trust meant the world to me. I knew each new family member had to be unique and memorable, while at the same time looking like they belonged. To put it simply, they needed to stand out, but not in a negative way. While I can't discuss specific character details, I can say a considerable amount of time and work went into crafting each of the new killers. Each one took well over a year from start to finish, and it's an aspect of the game that myself and the team is quite proud of.”

We cannot wait for you to see what we have in store for you with a few familiar faces and introduce you to a few new additions to the family.



What do you think about all this? are you excited?



In addition to new news about the Leatherface game, there is another news that I would like to talk about: the official board game of Dead by Daylight created by LEVEL99:

"Since the middle of 2021, our team has been working tirelessly on "Project Crow", which we are excited to announce is Dead by Daylight™: The Board Game.

The game will be coming to Kickstarter, and you can visit the page right now and click 'remind me' to be there on day 1 when it launches!"



What do you think about it?