Amnesia: The Bunker is a new self-contained chapter in the Amnesia series, and it brings some new, bone-chilling excitement to the franchise. Set in a dim and doomed World War I bunker, players take on the role of a French soldier who wakes up wounded and alone, save for something lurking in the dark. The game’s open-ended cat-and-mouse gameplay makes every expedition out of the central safe room a nerve-wracking experience, particularly due to the fact that the bunker’s size is quite deceptive, making every next move an exploration adventure.
The Bunker features a single, ever-present threat called the Stalker that lives behind the walls and can attack players at any moment. Similar to the enemy in Alien: Isolation, the Stalker is attracted to sound and can hear even the slightest noise you make. The unpredictability of the Stalker makes it a truly horrifying foe, especially since its behavior seems somewhat random. It might get enraged by something that didn’t bother it before, and players never know when they’ve gotten its attention. The sound design is also incredibly effective at creating fear in players, further fueling their paranoia.
Weapons and Fuel
Amnesia is known for being a horror game with no weapons, but The Bunker changes that up by providing players with some weaponry, such as a pistol and grenades. These weapons can come in handy when players are being attacked by the Stalker, but they also make it even more terrifying. The Stalker can resist even the most powerful weapons, meaning that players are often better off hiding from it instead of risking a direct confrontation.
A significant aspect of the game’s mechanics is the central generator that powers the bunker. It devours fuel quickly, and there’s also a limited amount of fuel available for players on the map. Moving around in the dark could easily attract the Stalker, and using the flashlight to move around alerts the creature to your position. This creates a sense of urgency and purpose in exploring the bunker, which is one of the most effective ways The Bunker elicits fear in players.
The story of The Bunker is somewhat simple compared to Rebirth’s interdimensional cosmic nightmare. Players take on the role of a French soldier who wakes up in a dim, doomed World War I bunker. The bunker is in a state of disarray, with most of the other soldiers dead and the exits destroyed. The story slowly unfolds as players find notes written by the soldiers and officers who once called the bunker home. While there are some nods to the larger Amnesia universe, The Bunker tells its own small and self-contained story, making for a unique experience.
A Terrifying Adventure
Although The Bunker may be a smaller and more self-contained chapter in the series, it does a great job of bringing new life to the franchise. The game’s cat-and-mouse mechanics, randomized events, and limited resources successfully create a continuously tense atmosphere that keeps players on edge.
Note: The game’s AI might be lacking, and there are complaints about the game’s loading times. Despite these issues, The Bunker is a game worth playing for those brave enough to take on its horrors.