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Zombie Studios Atlus

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LOS ANGELES — Nothing says “bad day” quite like waking up in a dilapidated hospital with nothing but a cellphone to light your way. This is the scenario you face in Atlus’s first publishing venture on next generation consoles: Zombie Studios’ Unreal Engine 4 game Daylight.

The curious thing about Daylight is that it is procedurally generated, meaning that it is unlikely that you’ll find the same hallways or spooky broken dolls in the same place across multiple playthroughs. But what makes Daylight particularly strange is that IGN host Jessica Chobot not only voices the terrified protagonist but even contributed to the story.

“Chobot is a big horror fan,” said Atlus press representative John Hardin in an interview with GamesBeat. “She’s really into spooky haunted hospitals, and I think [she’s] planning to go on a tour of famous haunted places.”

Daylight might seem like an odd publishing choice for Atlus, given the company’s long history with role-playing games, but many of its products have a definite horror spin to them. Ghosts and people-eating demons are common occurrences in an Atlus title.

“Did you see that,” Hardin said as I jumped back in my chair a little. “All the ghosts in this game are intentionally colored the same color as eye floaters, so you can’t really tell if they’re there or not.”

Shortly after that, a ghost strangled me. You can’t fight back in Daylight, and the only way to secure your release from this hospital of horrors is to track down possessed items scattered throughout the endless shadowy hallways all around you. This is certainly creepy, but I’m not sure if it is truly unlocking the full potential of Unreal Engine 4 with lots of darkness and a cellphone as your only friend.

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