The disappearance of P.T. (opens in new tab) from the PlayStation Store is one of the great tragedies of gaming history, but gamers aren't the sort to take the loss lying down. Unreal PT is the latest remake of the Hideo Kojima horror experiment, and it's available on itch.io (opens in new tab) for free right now.
Unreal PT took developer (and college student) Radius Gordello nine months to make, not bad considering "textures, models, animations, gameplay, and code have been recreated from scratch" and you can play the whole thing - if you have innards made of industrial grade steel - in virtual reality. The gameplay is pretty much identical, with a few tweaks to the end game to make it more "consistent" for players.
"I've been interested in game development for a while, and I figured PT would be a good starting point if I wanted to get some experience with it," Gordello told GamesRadar. "It's a relatively short game with not too much going on mechanically, so I thought I'd give it a shot."
The work took months - and had to be completed alongside college tests and papers - so Gordello found ways to keep himself interested. "Just mixed it up a lot," he says. "I kept switching between different aspects of development when I was getting exhausted with one part. I started on the layout and some basic textures, moved on to gameplay shortly after, spent around 2 months on lighting after that, went back to the gameplay."
As for changing the ending, that was inspired by Gordello's own experiences while studying the game's conclusion.
"There is a lot of conflicting information on how to trigger the ending in the original game," he explains. "Just trying to research it myself, every walkthrough had conflicting information about the most surefire way to trigger it. I'm still not too sure myself what the correct way is, as I've only been able to beat the original once myself."
"Mostly I just took out the part where you have to use a microphone, and made the chances of it triggering higher. Also there is only one way to complete it in my version, so I'm hoping that allows more people to complete it when following the correct steps."
And why are horror fans still so invested in this little horror demo? Partly it's because of what it represents - the Kojima and Guillermo Del Toro’s reboot of Silent Hills that we never got to see because of the Konami break up - and partly it's because it's a perfect little parcel of dread and scares. You're forced to repeat the same path over and over again, your eyes feeding on every tiny detail that might have changed since your last visit, a sense of dread building every time because maybe this is the version when something truly bad happens.
If you want to play Unreal PT download it fast (opens in new tab) before Konami's legal team wakes up. Back in July Konami shut down a similar project from 17-year-old developer Qimsar, but offered him an internship as a consolation prize. (opens in new tab)
As for Gordello, he's thinking about a new project, even if he isn't sure exactly what it is yet. "I'd like to make an original horror game for my next project, but I would like to team up with someone for that as I have no audio skills, and audio is very important to building up atmosphere in horror games."
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