It may sound like the kind of drug that you’d expect to find in an Aldous Huxley novel, but SOMA is actually the latest pant wetting project from Amnesia: The Dark Descent developer Frictional Games. The Swedish studio has been teasing the title for a while now, but it tiptoed onto the PlayStation Blog earlier today to confirm that the first-person scare fest is set to spook the PlayStation 4 in 2015.
“So what exactly is SOMA?” asked Thomas Grip. “Briefly stated, it's a sci-fi horror game. You are not a space marine, though, but a normal, and very exposed, person trapped in a nightmarish world. SOMA is a game about exploration, survival, and immersing you inside an interactive narrative.”
The game has been in production for three years already, and during that time the team has invested a lot of time into building an interesting fiction. “My favourite works of sci-fi are the ones that use fantastic worlds to probe important issues in a way that down-to-earth settings just cannot,” the developer continued. “We want to give SOMA this quality as well.”
The core of the release will revolve around the theme of consciousness, and as a consequence, you’ll spend a chunk of the game up against sentient technology. “Can machines be conscious?” pondered Grip. “It quickly gets very disturbing and is ideal for a futuristic horror setting. It's the kind of sci-fi that we want to make.”
The trailer shows off some of the eccentric creatures that you’ll meet, including a weird octopus-like being with a red bulb and a brain. “You will encounter a number of strange creatures, each an embodiment of an aspect of our themes,” the luminary added. “In order to survive the journey, you need to understand how they work and in the process take on extremely unsettling subjects.”
It certainly sounds like a great premise on paper, but the first footage embedded below hasn’t won us over just yet. Don’t get us wrong, there’s plenty of atmosphere in the clip – but we can’t help but feel that the out-of-place narration kills the mood a little bit. Still, with the release a couple of years away, we suppose that the studio’s got ample time to tune the proceedings to nail-biting perfection. We're already scared...