Yomawari: Night Alone Review

The Vita has a handful of horror games to choose from, most without even a physical release,  Yomawari: Night Alone is the first horror game on Vita to fill that void.

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Game Title:  Yomawari: Night Alone
Developer: Nippon Ichi software, Inc.
Platform: PlayStation Vita
Game Type: Horror
Download: 536 MB
NA Availability: Retail | Digital Download
EU Availability: Retail | Digital Download
PSTV Support: YES

Story and presentation

Yomawari: Night Alone proves that you should never judge a book by its cover.

What started of as  what seems to be an innocent scenario of being a little girl walking her dog at night, turns into every child’s nightmare.

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This simplistic concept goes a long way,
as you later on find yourself alone trying to find your sister and dog Poro throughout a hunted town overrunning with spirits.

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At first it’s easy to be fooled by Yomawari’s cute yet visually appealing graphics, But as you find yourself navigating throughout the fearsome town dodging spirits, getting jumpscared left From right, you soon realize that Yomawari isn’t a horror game to be taken lightly. Without the need of a soundtrack Yomawari gets you sucked into the atmosphere of being alone at night. It builds up suspense with the most simplest of sounds, rather that be your own footsteps, crickets or even horse spirits galloping throughout the streets.

Rather you’re  playing on PSTV or an OLED Vita Yomawari is real eye candy.

 

Gameplay

There a little to no direction in Yomawari,  which can leave to pointless wandering and being killed for not having enough stamina, this is the only visible source of frustration in Yomawari. Throughout the game you’ll really feel of sense of hopelessness, As most of your option are to run or hide from spirits, while running you have a stamina bar which quickly reduces and depletes faster whiles scared, which make it easier for spirits to catch up to you. You can hide in bushes and certain signs throughout the town, while hidden spirits can’t get to you.  you’ll be able to tell how close a spirit is next to you by your heartbeat and a  red radar around you.

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During your adventure you’ll come across different types of spirits that’ll need To be  approached and avoided differently, such as throwing rocks, lit matches or even giving them animal treats. Beware as spirits can sneak up on you.

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There are jizo statues around town for quick-saving, offering a coin to them will make the location the statue your latest save point.
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I find that although the heart raising moments in Yomawari: Night Alone will leave you on the edge of your seats, jumpscares are a “fool me once, shame on me, fool me twice,  shame on you” type of situation, as the same scenarios would repeat if you die.

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Collectibles, handwritten letters and puzzle are scattered throughout the game. It would’ve been nice if the collectables  added more to Yomawari’s short story.

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Conclusion

Yomawari: Night Alone does what many horror games can’t, as  setting a perfect atmosphere without the need  of a soundtrack. At first I was fool of the cute and adorable look of Yomawari, but soon realize I was in for a gem of a horror game.

The Vita was in need for a unique horror game with a physical release, as i stated earlier Yomawari: Night Alone is the first of hopefully many games to fill that void. Although I wish it was a little longer,  Yomawari is the perfect game to pop up when showing your Vita horror collection.

 

 

9.5/10