Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 53 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 53
  2. Negative: 11 out of 53
  1. Ambitious but inconsistent, frustrating but entertaining. Still an innovative adventure. [Aug 2008, p.62]
  2. A third-person action-adventure with the beating black heart of a survival horror, Alone in the Dark is a game that needs to be experienced by everybody. Its novel approach of applying shocks into an episodic structure, eight hourly segments in all, is a masterstroke.
  3. Alone in the Dark proves that with a little time and patience, a good game can be created from innovative ideas.
  4. There's quite a lot to enjoy in this game. In most aspects, it stays true to the traditions of the genre, provided you can stomach the unnecessarily lengthy prologue and the aforementioned drawbacks (bad camera, lousy voiceovers, atrocious vehicle physics and so on).
  5. As much as Alone In The Dark deserves to be criticised for its problems, it equally deserves to be lavished with praise for some outstanding ideas and set-pieces. A gracious failure, AITD should stand as a lesson for other developers to see what they should be striving for.
  6. Edward’s trip to the park is no picnic, but suffer through the controls and some aggravation and you’ll be compensated with a lot of unique moments. The game needed more gestation to really iron out the interface issues, but it remains an adventure worth pursuing.
  7. The breadth of Eden’s ambitions may have meant that there’s barely a feature that’s implemented more than satisfactorily, but there’s a generosity of vision here that few games can boast. [Aug 2008, p.88]
  8. You want to love it, but it just keeps letting you down, and in the end that's the impression that sticks to the wall and stays there.
  9. The monsters hunt Edward and one idea hunts the other. This game is not perfect but you definitely won’t get bored with it!
  10. Whilst not as executed quite to the level we'd hoped for, Alone in the Dark remains an original take on the survival horror genre, with its DVD-style structure and environmental interaction worthy of praise.
  11. A mix of revolutionary ideas and clumsy execution, Alone in the Dark is like a giant with clay feet. The way it marries new concepts with an old fashion control scheme of the character, not to mention some technical flaws, leaves us with a game that is frequently frustrating and only sometimes brilliant. [July 2008]
  12. 70
    Sure, its plot is hugely contrived, it’s occasionally frustrating and really lacking in the kind of polish we expect from big-name games in this day and age. However, it’s also undoubtedly one of the most imaginative, ambitious and exciting titles to hit a console in the last few years.
  13. Difficult and overly complicated control system.
  14. 68
    The controls are downright terrible in some instances.
  15. 67
    Atari's Alone in the Dark is so busy being experimental -- giving players the tools and rules to solve problems on their own -- that it neglects the alluring experientialism of earlier titles in the series, which set a tone and pace that sparked the survival-horror genre off years before "Resident Evil" hit the scene.
  16. Alone in the Dark has enough innovations to warrant being experienced by most gamers, but is crippled by poor design at the most basic levels.
  17. If you can endure some vexing technical flaws, Alone in the Dark can be a clever, satisfying adventure.
  18. Alone in the Dark can be applauded for its innovation, but it cannot be saved from its dysfunction. Had Eden Games added polish, or dare I say it, play-tested the game, it could have been a welcome addition for survival horror fans.
  19. Alone in the Dark is a good game, which falls short of being great based on the severe lack of polish.
  20. 65
    Reasonably innovative and inventive, Alone in the Dark has some great elements, unfortunately these are hampered by an equal dose of awkward negatives, preventing the game from truly bringing glory back to the franchise's name.
  21. Alone in the Dark clearly had the potential to be something nearer to a nine, or at the very least an eight, but it just didn’t turn out that way. It’s a curio though, and maybe worth picking up if it ever gets released at a more budget price.
  22. As you play through the game it is annoying at time and at times aggravating, but once you see how the game works and work with the issues the game comes with (camera, controls, gameplay) it is enjoyable.
  23. The controls leave quite a bit to be desired; I think the best way to describe them is awkward.
  24. AITD is one of the more difficult games to review that I've looked at recently, because it does so much right, but then it also does so much wrong as well. It truly is a hit and miss affair.
  25. Obviously, Alone in the Dark didn't come close to living up to expectations.
  26. It has more than enough good ideas to make a brilliant, must-own game, but features even more bad game design and gameplay issues. As such it's without doubt the biggest disappointment this generation of consoles has seen and a game that's impossible to recommend.
  27. We so wanted to like this game but it kept slapping us in the face with bad controls, repetitive puzzles and the annoying inventory. [Issue#34]
  28. Something just doesn’t add up about it, and the real mystery in Alone in the Dark isn’t what happened in Central Park, but what happened inside of Atari’s offices.
  29. Alone in the Dark is full of potential, but never actually pinpoints and executes it.
  30. 59
    Graphically inconsistent, oddly paced and quite unwieldy, AITD is not without its charms - unfortunately they seem to be mostly at the start and latter eps of the game.
  31. It is almost unplayable with its flawed control scheme.
  32. The presentation seems to be the only thing that saves Alone in the Dark from mediocrity, especially in the early parts of the game where the walls are cracking apart and there is a real eerie mood in all of the dimly lit rooms.
  33. Great cinematic looks and fresh ideas don't amount to much if they don't serve the game. Clumsy controls and annoying deaths ruin a game that has a lot of potential. Also the constant swearing feels tacked on and childish. [Aug 2008]
  34. There’s so much lovely intelligence lurking under Alone in the Dark’s hamstrung, occasionally glitchy surface (unforgivably, we found a few crash bugs in even the retail version!) that it’s hard to let this one go quietly into the night.
  35. We will reserve praise for the game’s chapter-skip function, however, because Alone In The Dark seems custom-built to tear your patience to shreds. [Aug 2008, p.98]
  36. In the end, the storyline and memorable moments will push most players towards finishing the eight to twelve hour storyline but this will be despite the majority of the gameplay rather than because of it.
  37. Alone In the Dark controls too stiffly, resulting in an abundance of cheap deaths. In addition, the item interface is clumsy, the third-person camera angles work against you and the driving sequence borderlines on unplayable.
  38. The game can be compared to an agressive puppy without potty-training. You want to keep him so badly, but everytime it seems to go right, it bites, scratches and sh.ts on your carpet.
  39. Even though Alone in the Dark shows great potential and a number of interesting ideas the overall experience is a poor one. Basically all parts of the game lack polish, and few of them are any good to begin with. The fact is that Alone in the Dark is a drag and playing through it is a pain. The intent for the game was good, the execution is poor.
  40. Ultimately, however, glitchy, leadened gameplay overshadows a fitting, choir-filled soundtrack and an entertaining, cinematic story.
  41. It's marred by confusing controls, terrible gameplay, abysmal camera angles and, worst of all, a character I couldn't stand.
  42. 50
    A frustrating and inconsistent mess that truly disappoints. By the time I reached the seventh episode, which degenerates into a needlessly painful time-sink grind to upgrade Edward with "spectral vision" points, the few things the game had done right had been virtually drowned in a murky sludge of ill-conceived and half-baked failures.
  43. Every good idea here is brought down by bad basic design, including a shoddy third-person camera, a too-slow first-person mode, and bizarre forced switching between the two. [Sept 2008, p.82]
  44. Alone in the Dark will surely come to be known as one of the biggest let downs of the year. Impressive set pieces and an initially compelling opening are horribly betrayed by a diabolical control system and frustrating glitches that strongly suggest the game would have benefitted from at least another six months intensive development and testing.
  45. It’s obvious that a lot of effort was put into certain elements of the game and its presentation. But no matter how nice the car looks on the outside, if the engine isn’t working you ain’t goin’ no place. Alone in the Dark is just that, a game going no place and with no reason in the world to suffer it.
  46. At the end of the day, the bad points massively outweigh the good ones, and when the credits roll you’ll be left with a feeling that it all could have been so much better. The game also has absolutely no replay value whatsoever, and is consequently terrible value for money.
  47. 40
    Edward Carnby's return had the potential to be the next Silent Hill. What we ended up with is more reminiscent of Trespasser.
  48. 40
    Alone in the Dark seems to hold open contempt for its players...You've seen survival horror done scarier and better elsewhere. Don't get burned by this one.
  49. 35
    This confused goulash of driving challenges, old-school puzzles, zombie battles, some late-game tomb-raidering and even a bit of “Grand Theft Auto” in the park fails at pretty much everything it tries to do.
  50. 35
    Nice visuals, great fire effects and valiant efforts at innovation don’t make up for boring combat, frustrating controls, poorly designed levels and a hackneyed story.
  51. The game is boring for long stretches, has an uneven level of difficulty and no worthwhile story.
  52. Every clever use of objects or fire is counterbalanced by sloppy basic design. Edward's movement is sluggish, and his object control imprecise.
  53. Is there anything good about Alone in the Dark? The fire effects are stunning and the music theme is quite good. Other than that though, nothing.
User Score
5.7

Mixed or average reviews- based on 147 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 56
  2. Negative: 20 out of 56
  1. Apr 3, 2013
    3
    Absolute rubbish! This is such a terrible continuation of a series that more or less started the survival horror genre. While the visuals in genreal are pretty good, and the story does at least try, what really damages this game is the game itself. It's linear, boring and almost to the point that it feels almost like a on-rails game, except it's not.

    Overall:
    If this game had no affiliation with the Alone in the Dark franchise I might have been kinder. But if you take on a big name like Alone in the Dark, you should do something worthy of the name. This game doesn't, at all.
    Full Review »
  2. Mar 19, 2012
    5
    This game does have its merits. However, they are completely overshadowed by poor game mechanics, graphics, and overall gameplay. The story had great potential, and the concept was outstanding and kept me coming back for more. Each time I came back, I had renewed frustrations with it and ended up leaving it for something else every time. I'm sad that something that could have been so good came out so badly. Full Review »
  3. briandead
    Sep 25, 2008
    4
    I was so looking forward to getting this game at last but found the controls to be overly complex and so utterly frustrating to use, along with the camera angles, for me it's barely playable . What a waste of money. Buy it only if you have the patience of a saint! Full Review »