Through the Woods

Last updated
Through the Woods
Developer(s) Antagonist
Publisher(s) 1C Publishing EU
Director(s) Stian Willums
Designer(s) Eirik R. A. Hanssen, Ole Helland
Composer(s) Dan Wakefield
Engine Unity
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows
Release27 October 2016
Genre(s) Horror Adventure
Mode(s) Single-player

Through the Woods is a third-person Norwegian horror adventure video game developed by the indie studio Antagonist and published by 1C Publishing EU. On 27 October 2016, the game was released for Microsoft Windows on Steam and GOG.com. [1] [2]

Third-person shooter (TPS) is a subgenre of 3D shooter games in which the player character is visible on-screen during gaming, and the gameplay consists primarily of shooting.

Norway Country in Northern Europe

Norway, officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic country in Northwestern Europe whose territory comprises the western and northernmost portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula; the remote island of Jan Mayen and the archipelago of Svalbard are also part of the Kingdom of Norway. The Antarctic Peter I Island and the sub-Antarctic Bouvet Island are dependent territories and thus not considered part of the kingdom. Norway also lays claim to a section of Antarctica known as Queen Maud Land.

Horror fiction genre of fiction

Horror is a genre of speculative fiction which is intended to frighten, scare, disgust, or startle its readers by inducing feelings of horror and terror. Literary historian J. A. Cuddon defined the horror story as "a piece of fiction in prose of variable length... which shocks, or even frightens the reader, or perhaps induces a feeling of repulsion or loathing". It creates an eerie and frightening atmosphere. Horror is frequently supernatural, though it might be also non-supernatural. Often the central menace of a work of horror fiction can be interpreted as a metaphor for the larger fears of a society.

Contents

Plot

In the western shore of Norway, a widowed woman named Karen lives in a cabin in the woods with her son Espen. Somewhat estranged from each other, Karen does not actively engage with Espen's various activities, and rather works on her own projects and take naps in the majority of the day because she is working late.

Despite Karen's warnings, Espen walks to an old rickety pier and suddenly disappears. Karen runs after and discovers that a mysterious old man who calls himself Old Erik, an old Norwegian name for the devil, has kidnapped Espen. She swims after his old boat to a mysterious island where she sees that, oddly, the moon has been shattered. Karen is confronted and hunted by various dangerous creatures and monsters such as trolls, Huldra, and mythological talking wolves from Norse mythology and Norwegian folk tales. She sees old ruined villages where the people have mostly vanished or dead and the very few humans she meets have either been driven insane by grief and trauma, or commit suicide in front of her.

Devil supernatural entity that is the personification of evil and the enemy of god and humankind

A devil is the personification of evil as it is conceived in many and various cultures and religious traditions. It is seen as the objectification of a hostile and destructive force.

Moon Earths natural satellite

The Moon, occasionally distinguished as Luna, is an astronomical body that orbits the Earth as its only permanent natural satellite. It is the fifth-largest satellite in the Solar System, and the largest among planetary satellites relative to the size of the planet that it orbits. The Moon is, after Jupiter's satellite Io, the second-densest satellite in the Solar System among those whose densities are known.

Norse mythology body of mythology of the North Germanic people stemming from Norse paganism and continuing after the Christianization of Scandinavia and into the Scandinavian folklore of the modern period

Norse mythology is the body of myths of the North Germanic peoples, stemming from Norse paganism and continuing after the Christianization of Scandinavia, and into the Scandinavian folklore of the modern period. The northernmost extension of Germanic mythology, Norse mythology consists of tales of various deities, beings, and heroes derived from numerous sources from both before and after the pagan period, including medieval manuscripts, archaeological representations, and folk tradition.

Eventually it is revealed that Karen has entered a forgotten time that had stopped after "The Great War" or Ragnarök. The great warrior Vidar was supposed to kill and destroy the World Eater known as Fenris, thus stopping their world being destroyed. However, Vidar was too injured to deliver the killing blow. Vidar and Fenris instead make a pact: Leave Hodimir's holt, the last remaining place, alone and they will do anything.

Ragnarök End times in Norse mythology

In Norse mythology, Ragnarök is a series of events, including a great battle, foretold to lead to the death of a number of great figures, natural disasters and the submersion of the world in water. After these events, the world will resurface anew and fertile, the surviving and returning gods will meet and the world will be repopulated by two human survivors. Ragnarök is an important event in Norse mythology and has been the subject of scholarly discourse and theory in the history of Germanic studies.

Fenris agrees on the condition that he gets a child sacrificed to him an every odd number of years.

In the end, the island is empty of children due to its monstrous dangers, as well as diseases and starvation, thus pushing the people to insanity and trauma after the aftermath of The War. The islander called "Old Erik", who reluctantly took the role to take the children to the giant maws of Fenris, learns that there is a way to travel across worlds and entered into our world. However his actions were discovered by Fenris, who demanded more children more often or he would wake up and eat the rest of the world. Now that he knows about the world Karen and Espen came from, he wishes to eat that one too.

It is also revealed that Karen accidentally hurt Espen repeatedly, causing her husband to file in for a divorce and full custody of Espen, but Karen warped the truth to keep her child, causing the blame for abuse to fall on her husband. After the trial was done, her husband committed suicide, causing Karen to feel great shame.

Divorce, also known as dissolution of marriage, is the process of terminating a marriage or marital union. Divorce usually entails the canceling or reorganizing of the legal duties and responsibilities of marriage, thus dissolving the bonds of matrimony between a married couple under the rule of law of the particular country or state. Divorce laws vary considerably around the world, but in most countries divorce requires the sanction of a court or other authority in a legal process, which may involve issues of distribution of property, child custody, alimony, child visitation / access, parenting time, child support, and division of debt. In most countries, monogamy is required by law, so divorce allows each former partner to marry another person.

Finally, after several close calls, Karen finally catches up with Espen and Old Erik near the mountainous jaws of Fenris. However Espen has already accepted that he needs to be sacrificed in order to delay the unavoidable, despite Karen's cries of protest pleading to him to come back to her. They try to catch him, but is too late as both Old Erik and Karen fall down into the watery grave of Fenris' jaws.

They all return to the new world. Old Erik has died, and Karen tries to perform CPR on Espen but it is too late. Karen knows that Espen's sacrifice only delayed the full apocalypse by a few years, and that Fenris will require more children eventually. To honor her son's sacrifice, Karen has to pick up the mantle of Old Erik because the instant the pact is broken, every child sacrificed will have been for nothing, and she will not let that happen.

Gameplay

The game features interesting lighting and sounds that plays tricks on, and deceives the player. As the player explores the woods they will find many hidden caves and passageways containing secrets about the island where the game takes place. [3] The main character is only equipped with a flashlight and will need this and sneaking skills to get past the creature inhabiting this grim place.

Development

The game was developed by the Norwegian studio Antagonist and started out as a student project. Antagonist began full production in July 2014. It won the "Sound of the Year" award at the Norwegian GAME Awards, 19 February 2015. [3] A Kickstarter ran from 14 May 2015 - 14 June 2015 with the goal of $40,000. They exceeded their goal with $43,833 from 1,272 backers. [4] The game was greenlit by the Steam Community. [5] The development team consists of Dan Wakefield (Sound designer and writer), Stian Willums (art director and character artist), Torje Dreng Andersen (environment artist), Eirik R. A. Hanssen (programmer) and Torstein Vien (programmer). It was released in May 2018 for PS4 & Xbox One . [6]

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References

  1. "Through the Woods on Steam". Steam.
  2. "Through the Woods on GOG.com". GOG.com.
  3. 1 2 "Antagonist press kit". Antagonist.
  4. "Through the Woods by Antagonist — Kickstarter". Kickstarter.
  5. "Steam Greenlight :: Through the Woods". Steam.
  6. "Antagonist About Page".