2018 saw the release of Remothered: Tormented Fathers, a horror game that invoked the true fear we all felt when playing through the survival horror games of the PlayStation 2. Tormented Fathers became a huge success, and we’re now right around the corner from the launch of its highly-anticipated sequel, Remothered: Broken Porcelain.
GameByte was treated to an exclusive preview of the game, presented by producer Antonio Cutrona, where we got to talk all things classic horror. From what we’ve seen, it’s safe to say the sequel has taken the best parts of Tormented Fathers and twisted them into an even more bone-chilling experience.
For those who aren’t familiar with Remothered: Tormented Fathers, the game follows Rosemary Reed on a quest through the mansion of Dr. Richard Felton, but the protagonist soon finds herself stalked and terrorised by a number of enemies as the plot unfolds. The game is very much a hide-and-seek horror, and won itself a loyal fanbase thanks to its Clock Tower and Haunting Ground PS2-era vibes.
Broken Porcelain, on the other hand, follows the teenage Jennifer. Jennifer has found herself working at the Ashmann Inn, a sinister location that seems to be brimming with hidden secrets and unseen terrors.
From the gameplay preview, it’s clear that the developers have taken the next Remothered game to the lofty heights that the series deserves, with incredible graphics and mechanics that just weren’t feasible for the first title.
For the first time, the series will see fully animated real-time cinematics along with carefully curated and fully explorable environments, both indoor and out.
Even though the preview shown was beta footage, the graphical differences were astounding. As producer Antonio told me, the developers at Stormind Games have been hard at work dissecting the latest styles and mechanics from other studios using the same game engine, Unreal 4.
“From the tech side, in which I am mainly involved, we are trying to be updated with games made with Unreal Engine,” said Antonio. “So we are looking at what AAA studios are doing with Unreal Engine, and we try to replicate that. Often, just looking at the game solves issues that you thought were unsolvable, so it’s very, very useful to look at everything made in Unreal, and stem how much you can push and move forward.”
The difference between Tormented Fathers and Broken Porcelain is clear in everything I was shown of the gameplay. From the environments to the facial features of characters, this is Remothered like never before.
“Compared to the first game we have a lot of outdoor environments, so we were able to have fun in simulating the atmosphere,” said Antonio. “So physics simulations for the dress on Jennifer and also her hair. And we were able to simulate breath [in cold weather].”
The differences don’t end with the graphics though, as Broken Porcelain will also feature a range of new gameplay mechanics for fans to explore.
For the first time, the series will allow crafting, as well as crouching, sneak attacks and improved stealth mechanics. The game’s main character, Jennifer, also has a few surprises up her sleeve when it comes to her skills and talents, with her mysterious “Moth Eye” ability being teased by the developers.
Antonio told me: “We needed to make Jennifer more powerful…not just with the Moth Eye. We’ve included another new ability for her…the ability to sneak up on an enemy from behind and be able to attack them in stealth. Of course, this will alert them [to your presence].”
Playing through the game preview for me, Antonio explained: “We need to not make a sound and use our skills. In this case, the cover feature. So the cover mechanic is a new addition to the game…it was lacking in Tormented Mothers so we managed to include it in Broken Porcelain. You will be able to look behind corners and hide yourself from your enemies, taking cover behind obstacles.”
With so many new options to take with your playthrough, Broken Porcelain offers the chance to be both more strategic and more cautious with your choices, a key element for any horror game. As described in the press release: “Survival will take more than just quick reactions as a strategic and resourceful approach to encounters will mean the difference between life or death. Be smart – knowing the best time to sneak, flee or fight imminent dangers can quickly make these hunters become the hunted.”
One of the many things that made Tormented Fathers so appealing for many is its story and lore. It’s not too surprising, considering Remothered was originally planned to be a book series, and it’s good to see the team is expanding on the foundations first laid out. For fans of the first game, expect a deeper narrative, darker histories to explore, and – of course – more investigations.
“A returning big part of the game is the investigation aspect,” said Antonio. “We’ll be able to collect articles that explore the lore of the game, in this case, an article about some mysterious teenage kidnappings.”
As we explored more of the preview, Antonio spoke a little more about the differences between the first game and Broken Porcelain, specifically when it comes to the game’s story.
“There is a big story component to the game, so it’s very deep,” he told me. “The story is very deep and the characters are very well developed. This time around there will be a lot more…you’ll be able to understand the background of the characters here.”
As a person obsessed with all things horror – especially classic horror games – Remothered definitely invokes something of a childish glee in me. It’s rare to see such nostalgically-created horror games in this day and age, and I was curious to find out more about creating a game in that style.
“We are referring to Broken Porcelain (and Remothered in general) as that sort of ‘new classic survival horror game,'” laughed Antonio. “We want to keep the classic aspects and those kind of common mechanics that can be found in all horror and survival horror games. But at the same time, we don’t want to feel like [we’re] doing – I don’t know how to say it – B games?
“Some kind of innovation is [needed], and we, for the most part, we implement that using some new tech features, but also upgrading the way that the player can interact with the environments…being the game that is it, the old school aspect is maintained.”
As for just what inspires the Remothered team, it’s – unsurprisingly – a whole load of classic horror.
“It’s not only games [which inspire us]. We look at different things if we want to take a reference for story or for gameplay, or also for setting up our technical requirements…I know for Chris [Darrill – Game Director and Author of Remothered], a really important source of inspiration are movies and horror movies,
“Some of them are pretty clear. The Shining. And Rosemary’s Baby is a big influence. We spent nights watching that movie. A lot of cult horror movie, also Italian movies [and directors] like Dario Argento. We are fans of Suspiria!
“For the game, the main source was Clock Tower, originally Remothered was born to be a reference [to] Clock Tower. With the years, we went our own way.”
If you haven’t played Remothered: Tormented Fathers, but Broken Porcelain has piqued your interest, don’t worry – Antonio is confident you won’t need to be a returning player to appreciate the upcoming game.
“Since the start, we wanted Broken Porcelain to be able to be played by newcomers and also returning players. I think we managed to find the balance, so if you’re new to the series you would be able to enjoy Jennifer’s own adventure.”
That doesn’t mean there’s nothing for fans of Tormented Fathers though, as Antonio cryptically teased: “If you are coming from the first game, you will have some surprises, you will be able to find a lot of new information and answers to some of the questions that were left open in the first game. So I think that we’ve managed to find a good balance on that.”
Remothered: Broken Porcelain will release on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 , Xbox One and PC during summer 2020. Wishlist it now on Steam here!
Check out some exclusive new footage from Remothered: Broken Porcelain below!
You can find out what we thought of the original game in our video below too!
Featured Image Credit: Stormind Games