This might be kind of sad, but I’m going to start this article by saying THIS IS A GOOD EARLY ACCESS HORROR GAME. I haven’t played it yet myself, but user reviews on Steam have so far been brimming with praise for this psychological Tilt-O-Whirl about a mentally ill painter and his mind-bending obsession with 14th century artwork.

layers of fear screenshot

If you’re confused as to the cause of my all-caps outburst, it’s because horror games often get a bad rap for being hastily slapped-together asset flips, as do early access games. So when they’re combined into one package, people often run for the hills. But with Layers of Fear, people should be running away from the hills—or something like that—because early reaction on the title has been very positive. Let’s take a look at the trailer.

First off I have to mention the incredible graphics, so kudos to Bloober Team, because stunning visuals go a long way in conveying fear in the same way that a realistic movie can. It allows the experience to more easily enter the players’ empathy zones, and therefore the brain is tricked into thinking it’s real. But the concept of the game is anything but realistic, and more aims to mimic the delusions of an ill mind. Described as “psychedelic horror game”, camera movements can completely change the way the player sees their surroundings. So one moment the player might be presented with a clean and festive living area, and the next it might be contorted into a dingy, violent crime scene.

layers of fear screenshot

As was mentioned, Layers of Fear is an early access game, and therefore will likely be added to and improved over the next few months. But many people are commenting that the game is already up to full-release par, and so they are excited to see how much more the developers can achieve with the additional development time.

layers of fear screenshot

Layers of Fear is available now on Steam for 15% off the regular price of $9.99 until September 3rd.