Betrayer is game that so far has poised more questions than answers. Your character has ventured to Virginia at the turn of the 17th century in hopes of helping a struggling colony, instead immediately you notice something is wrong. Where is everyone? Who is this strange cloaked lady in the distance? Where has the color gone? Throughout my time with Betrayer (from the developers of F.E.A.R. and No One Lives Forever) I have yet to answer these questions, but that’s what makes the game so unique.
Something that immediately strikes me with this game is the black, white and red color scheme. It might scare some players away, but I feel like it only adds to the helplessness I feel as the character. I know that so far I’m all alone in this foreign world and besides the cloaked ally in the distance who has left me notes and a bow and arrow; it seems like I’ll have to solve these mysteries by myself. Another element that seems to be present right away is the absence of sound. Walking down pathways in the woods can be especially eerie when the only noise that’s present is the leaves bustling in the wind or a creepy crow squawking in the distance. This like the black and white coloring only adds to the fear I have as a player.
One thing that’s special about Betrayer is its openness. The game doesn’t rely on giving the player waypoints, instead allows for the game to unravel itself depending on how the player plays. Whether it be north, east, south, or west the direction you go is sure to be filled with clues to discover, chests to loot, and enemies to fight. That brings me to the weak point so far in Betrayer: the combat feels stiff and frankly, pretty dated. You’ll encounter varied ghost-enemies to fight, from archers and musket men, to armored enemies that charge at you with swords drawn. You’ll also have an arsenal to fight these enemies with including different types of bows, muskets, pistols, and tomahawks. Unfortunately the weapons so far lack the weight that other first person games carry. Firing a musket doesn’t feel like I’m firing a musket, firing a bow doesn’t… well you get it. I’ve already found myself avoiding some fights all together because they aren’t as enjoyable as sneaking around to find more clues.
Betrayer is still in the alpha stage, so it’s easy to forgive its faults as Blackpowder games can easily work out the kinks. This game does something new with a first person genre that is filled with the same type of games. No game was ever flawless in alpha but the creepy vibe, awesome setting, and mystery elements to Betrayer are going to keep me coming back for more until the final game is released.
You can buy Betrayer now on Steam for early access to the game here!
Or you can visit Betrayer’s official website here!