Developer: BIGZUR
Price: $2.99
Version Reviewed: 0.9
App Reviewed on: iPad mini Retina

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★☆
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

The original Slender game was a huge sleeper hit on PC/Mac, so naturally there have been a wealth of copycat iOS iterations over the past couple of years. Hoping to secure its place as one of the best and brightest is Slender Man Origins; delving into the history of the lanky creep, while scaring gamers half to death as they do it.

20140301-011607.jpgFor those who have never heard of Slender Man, he is basically a black-suited faceless weirdo who steals children with the help of his trusty tendrils as they protrude from his wiry frame. If that wasn’t scary enough, Slender Man Origins chucks players into four different environments – each one either clouded in fog, beaten by heavy rain, or shrouded in darkness – and tasks them with finding seven kids.

As they navigate through the forest, castle hallways, and graveyards, players will hear the distant sounds of whimpering children, random heavy breathing, and all sorts of environmental sound effects from whirring trees to shattering glass. Take all that and combine it with random objects toppling over, excellent lighting effects, and a foreboding piano score, and players have themselves one hell of a tense gameplay experience. And one that certainly does justice to the original.

20140301-011617.jpgOne gripe I do have, however, is that it’s very difficult to evade capture from the Slender Man after he has players in his sights. Besides a small change in ambient sound and some slight static (which is almost impossible to notice in Dark mode), there’s very little warning that he’s in the vicinity; meaning that I never succeeded in finding any more than two kids in one attempt. A little less resistance would have helped, so that players are granted at least one chance to escape him unscathed. The endless crying – which often sounded like laughter and succeeded in scaring the bejesus out of me – can also become irritating, especially if it takes a long time to find the kid. Lastly, there isn’t much in terms of a narrative either, besides the initial tutorial sequence. It kind of makes the Origins part of the name redundant, so more on that would have been nice.

Nevertheless, Slender Man Origins is one of the best Slender iOS iterations on the App Store right now. Ignore the Fog and Rain options, turn off the lights, put on some headphones, and have a spare pair of underwear handy.


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