Horror games don’t always come with scary monsters and limited ammo, though Intruders: Hide and Seek for PSVR isn’t truly a horror game, at least not in the strictest sense. What it is, however, is damn scary and tense as hell.
Before we kick things off, let’s go over some of the requirements for Intruders: Hide and Seek. While it can be played completely in PSVR mode, the game is also playable as a traditional flat game. So if you don’t have a PSVR headset, you can still play the game but you’ll be missing out on the tension and scares that come with playing the game in virtual reality.
The game takes place almost exclusively inside a family home, except for the opening where you’re a passenger on the way to the family’s holiday home. You play as the small son of the family and this is the first thing that stuck out. Why? Because I actually felt tiny inside this game! During the slow intro where you’re tasked with finding the power switch, you mooch around the basement and then head back upstairs. It’s weird to see door handles at eye level, considering I’m a grown-arse man and I’ve not had to reach for anything in over a decade. Still, I really liked this seemingly small detail. In part because it really did make me feel vulnerable when I was being chased around the house by the titular invaders.
The story goes that three men have stormed your family’s holiday home and taken your parents captive. You, the boy, and your sister, are the only ones left untied. Your sister, the sneaky lass, has hidden herself away in the home’s panic room while you brave the baddies. You won’t be swinging any of your tiny fists at them, though, as this game is all about the stealthy sneaking.
If you play the game anything like how I did, you’ll spend most of it crouched. Not in real life, but in the game. Crouching, as it does in 99% of games, reduces your noise output and visibility, so it makes sense that you’d use it. Maybe I abused it. I don’t know. If I did, I didn’t do a great job at it as I ended up in the arms of my pursuers more than I’m ready to admit.
The sneaking isn’t actually that difficult and it’s easy enough to figure out where the bad guys are going to be. Their patrols are simple and easy to learn, while the house you play in isn’t exactly a labyrinth to get lost in. Plus, there’s cupboards to hide in if it all goes tits up. While it wasn’t particularly difficult, it was extremely tense and at time, downright scary. Yes, I’m a wuss. I do not like being scared. What I also don’t like is the lack of clear conviction when it comes to being detected by the baddies. Sometimes I was able to sneak right past them without a whisper of trouble, other times I’d be crouched down behind a counter or a sofa and they’d be alerted as if I’d stood up and flashed my ninnies. It was a little hit and miss but for the most part it was fine.
There’s a reason to the home invasion, mind you, and it’s not just some lads looking to score some DVDs and some cash lying around. These guys are bad news and it’s all related to your father’s work. I’m not going to spoil anything here but I will say that the story was surprisingly good, though the voice acting could have been a lot better. Some lines sounded like they were being delivered as the actors sat with a gun to their temple. Heck, maybe they were…
I spent most of my time playing Intruders: Hide and Seek in PSVR. I did venture out of the headset for a short while to see what it’s like on my TV, but it’s just not the same. While it looks very clean and crisp on the TV compared to the PSVR’s headset, I still found the VR version to be far more engaging to play. Simply put, I didn’t feel all that threatened when I was sat in my dimly lit living room with all the distractions that come with it. Inside the headset, however, I really did feel like a scared little boy. Did I scream the first time I got chased by the intruders? Yes. And that’s why it’s best to play in PSVR.
The game is controlled exclusively by the DualShock 4 controller, which makes sense as it’s also playable on a regular telly. I didn’t find this bothersome at all and I can’t really imagine it being done in any other way. There are enough comfort options for you to optimise the game to your own VR standards, but I played with most of them turned off and didn’t get queasy once. Either my VR legs are ripped or the game just doesn’t induce nausea. I’m going with a bit of both.
There’s not much bad to say about Intruders: Hide and Seek, though I’m guessing the run time will be a bit of a sore point for those looking for value. The game costs £15.99 and runs for about two-and-half hours, at least for me it did. I guess that you could stretch that out further by gathering the collectibles and shooting for the platinum trophy, but I can’t see it going over the four-hour mark, not unless the word ‘stealth’ is brand new to you.
The best I can say is that it’s almost like being a part of your own horror movie. Think of it as a twisted Home Alone where you play as the kid, albeit without all the ingenious traps and childish gags. Oh, and a much darker story than anything Kevin got tangled up in.
Considering the game doesn’t do much outside of having you sneak around, the running time isn’t all that bad; if it went on any longer, boredom and repetition would become a bigger issue and this review wouldn’t be quite so positive.
Intruders: Hide and Seek PS4/PSVR Review
Intruders: Hide and Seek doesn’t look like it’d be a scary horror game, but it is kind of is. The developers play with the idea of a home invasion and leave it at that. The idea alone is scary enough, but being placed into the dirty sneakers of a little boy makes it surprisingly frightening and extremely tense.
The run time is a little on the lower end and the dialogue isn’t great, but there’s a decent enough story to keep you sneaking around the house until the credits roll.
Great in PSVR with excellent graphics and controls
Extremely tense gameplay
A decent story
A little on the easy side when you learn how the bad guys move
Can be finished in under three hours
Some woeful voice acting
Reviewed using PS4 Pro.
Chris has been writing about gaming news for far too long, and now he’s doing it even more. A true PlayStation know-it-all, Chris has owned just about every Sony console that ever existed. Trophies are like crack to this fella. (Bronze trophies, that is – he only has one Platinum.)