WHITE DAY: A LABYRINTH NAMED SCHOOL

Learn­ing the hard way

PlayStation Official Magazine (UK) - - CONTENTS -

This re­make of a Korean sur­vival hor­ror clas­sic sees you play­ing as Hui-min Lee, a new stu­dent at Yeon­doo High School, the last known lo­ca­tion of a sus­pi­ciously high num­ber of miss­ing/dead stu­dents. Smit­ten by class­mate So-Young, Lee re­turns af­ter hours to leave her some choco­lates. Turns out he’s not alone, and so be­gins this tale of hauntings and un­godly aca­demic pres­sure.

White Day’s magic lies in its com­plex sto­ry­telling. The di­a­logue trees im­pact on the story and which end­ing you get (yup, there are sev­eral), and the de­ci­sions you make have mean­ing­ful con­se­quences to en­joy. The puz­zles are smart and ra­zor-sharp, if oc­ca­sion­ally bru­tal1 – those timed events are not sym­pa­thetic to your plight.

Graph­ics have been boosted, but this is still based on a 2001 game, so man­age those ex­pec­ta­tions, if you’re a hor­ror fan. Though if the dis­con­so­late moan­ing of spec­tres in the final act doesn’t make you reach for the mute but­ton, you’re a bet­ter per­son than me.

The game has been tweaked from pre­vi­ous ver­sions you may have played, and puz­zle so­lu­tions and ghostly en­coun­ters vary with each playthrough, keeping you on your toes. The con­trol scheme it­self is kind of spongy, though, and the sweep­ing eye at the top of the HUD that makes you aware of a nearby hello-I-want-to-beat-your-brains-in­with-my-base­ball-bat jan­i­tor2 is de­ac­ti­vated for all dif­fi­cul­ties ex­cept Ex­tra Easy. Yes, this makes it sur­pris­ingly tough and yes, we’ll still judge you if you need it. Wuss.

Cheap jump scares aside, White Day is still as un­set­tling as it ever was, even 16 years af­ter its de­but re­lease. Vikki Blake

FOOTNOTES1 Use game-sav­ing felt pens wisely… just like Res­i­dent Evil’s typewriter rib­bons, they’re in short sup­ply. 2 If you’re spot­ted by the Jan­i­tor, the bath­room stalls are a good place to hide.

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