Parents’ Guide – Soma

Pass Me My Brown Diving Trousers

While releasing a little while ago for PC and Playstation 4, this week we’ve been taking a look under the hood and deep into the depths of the survival horror from Frictional Games, Soma

Frictional Games have a well respected pedigree when it comes to the survival horror genre, and we’re glad to say that Soma really does live up to what you’re probably expecting from it. From way back with in their Penumbra games Frictional have come along way, we’re happy to see them building on previous successes with Amnesia: The Dark Descent, to bring us something in the same vein, but with another great original story.

Soma sees you awaking in your present day apartment, and on the way to a doctor’s appointment where you’ll undergo a small non-invasive procedure, before being transported far into the future, and into an underground science station with Pathos-II. you’ll make your way through the station and different areas of the base to follow a great narrative, and complete various missions along the way (which we’ll try not to give away here)

The oppressive atmosphere is, as you would expect, done very well, though we do thing Frictional have eased off a little on the terror which while great for us, may not be for everybody. We’d still rate is as scarier than alien Isolation, but probably a little below the likes of Outlast, and we think it strikes a great balance between the brown trousers moments, and a compelling story to pull you in and keep you going.

The Run Down
Graphics: 9/10: Visuals in Soma are great and only a few tiny glitches on computer screens fromtime to time stop it getting a full ten. Could be improved, possibly, but not by much and the graphics are just one part of the experience which delivers a great oppressive environment

Story: 9/10: there are plenty of story elements within Soma, over and above a lot of film releases these days. There are some twists in the tail and some of those are spottable a little too early (we’d say) but other than that it’s a corker

Sound: 9/10: Great sound design throughout here to help bring that oppressive athmosphere as well as ge the hairs on the back of your neck stood up. Other than soundtrack and effects, there’s a great voice cast who’ve done a great job adding to the whole experience

Replayability: 4/10: Gameplay in Soma is slow, and you’ll need to take your time and work through certain areas to avoid the frankly creepy monsters which could end your journey prematurely. There are story bits you might miss on the first go, and the new Safe mode is a great addition for those looking for a story without the scares (or without so many scares), but we’re not sure it’s going to be enough to draw people back through the entire story.

Satisfaction: 9/10: Overall Soma is definitely one to pick up if you’re a sci-Punk or survival horror lover. The under £25 price tag on the xbox store makes this a great deal even if you only play to follow the story on safe mode, but we’d advise you dive deep into the horror experience,
and get the full Frictional Games effect.

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