Tarsier Studios’ Little Nightmares is a grim puzzle-platformer full of gruesome monsters and implied cannibalism, but it has one bright spot: the Nomes. These little critters are in the trenches with you, scurrying away and hiding from danger. They lead to one of the biggest emotional beats in Little Nightmares, and they’re the highlight of the new DLC, The Hideaway. It’s the second of three Tarsier will release, and it’s out this week for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.
Little Nightmares is about a hellish underwater resort called The Maw, where a sinister figure called The Lady has trapped children, presumably so that ghastly guests can eat them. In the initial release, you play as a yellow raincoat-wearing girl named Six. In the DLC, you’re The Runaway Kid, another unfortunate child who’s looking to escape.
After narrowly escaping an aquatic creature in the first DLC (The Depths), the Kid now finds himself deep in the mechanical belly of his prison. The Hideaway doesn’t have as many scares and chase scenes. It’s more about solving puzzles with the help of Nomes. It doesn’t have any new monsters but does bring back one bad guy: The Janitor, the spindly-armed antagonist from Little Nightmares.
“The Hideaway is much more focused on the Nomes, their story and the Kid’s relationship with them, having a new antagonist would be too likely to spoil that focus,” said Tarsier’s associate producer Stephen Hallett in an email to GamesBeat. “Instead of being about the Nomes it’d become more about ‘defeating’ the new enemy.”
Before, it was never quite clear who the Nomes were or why they were on the ship. The Hideaway explores the reason for their unfortunate existence, though not everything is answered. The world of Little Nightmares as often haunting and mysterious, all the more so because it leaves things to the imagination.
“The Nomes were always something we planned to look at further, and the DLC was the perfect opportunity to let players learn more about their place in The Maw,” said Hallett.