Obscure (video game)

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Obscure
Obscure cover.jpg
North American cover art for the PC version
Developer(s) Hydravision Entertainment
Publisher(s) MC2-Microïds (Europe)
DreamCatcher Interactive (North America)
Writer(s) Tony Marques
Composer(s) Olivier Deriviere
Series Obscure
Engine RenderWare
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows
PlayStation 2
Xbox
Release
  • EU: October 1, 2004
  • NA: April 6, 2005
Genre(s) Survival horror
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer

Obscure is a survival horror video game developed by Hydravision Entertainment and published by DreamCatcher Interactive[1] in North America, Ubisoft in China and MC2-Microïds in other territories for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2 and Xbox. It was released on October 1, 2004 in Europe and on April 6, 2005 in North America.

Story[edit]

Strange things are happening at Leafmore High. Three teenagers set out to search for their missing friend. Finding themselves locked inside the school overnight, they now have to get to the bottom of the strange occurrences.

The player controls the five teenagers as they explore the school and battle a number of different types of infected students. The students discover that the enemies are sensitive to light, with direct sunlight being able to destroy them. Flashlights help to slightly weaken their foes and the malevolent black aura surrounding them.

The students discover a conspiracy involving injections turning students into mutated monsters, mostly experimentations based on a rare plant spore, with the possibility to allow people to live forever. It is discovered that the nurse, Elisabeth, and principal, Herbert, are over 100 years old but seem only to be in their 60s, thanks to the tests they performed on each other.

The students later come across Herbert, who is killed by a teacher seeking to cure himself of the infection caused by Herbert's experiments. Herbert's twin, Leonard, sees his dead brother and becomes angry. He murders the teacher and then leaves the teenagers to defeat the biggest mutant seen yet.

After defeating him, they return to the gym and inject themselves with the cure. However, Leonard returns and after a battle, Leonard gives into the sunlight and everything is back to normal.

Player characters[edit]

Obscure gives players the ability to control and switch between any of five playable characters. Given that he or she will be playing in pairs of characters, the other characters will be computer-controlled, or a second player can join in at any time.

  • Josh Carter (voiced by Sam Riegel) - A shy and reserved reporter for the school paper. He can tell if there's anything left to do in an area, such as items to pick up, or locations that advance the storyline.
  • Stanley Jones (voiced by Scott Haze) - A stoner who does drugs, and is good friends with Josh and Kenny. He is a thief and computer hacker. He is able to pick locks easier and break into rooms.
  • Kenny Matthews (voiced by Michael Sinterniklaas) - He is the varsity athlete, and Shannon's older brother.
  • Shannon Matthews (voiced by Stephanie Sheh) - Kenny's smart younger sister. Shannon dresses provocatively to take the focus away from her intelligence. She provides tips on puzzles and heals wounds. She is able to heal 20% more with a normal health item.
  • Ashley Thompson (voiced by Tara Platt) - She is a cheerleader, and Kenny's girlfriend. She has the ability to rapid fire a pistol, and deals more damage with most weapons.
  • Dan - He is the first human Kenny comes across inside a room in the basement. His health is critically low due to being a test subject, however. He is a student, who ends up being killed very quickly by a monster when he and Kenny attempt to escape together, and his death cannot be prevented.

Gameplay[edit]

Obscure has a two-player cooperative mode that allows the player to complete the campaign with a friend. The game also allows players to combine items, for example taping a flashlight to any firearm. Some critics, including X-Play, have stated that this was the only redeeming quality, and mocked id's Doom 3 for not implementing such a concept.

While each character has special abilities, none of them are necessary to complete the game. Each character can perform the same physical acts even if it takes some characters longer and/or more effort than others. If any characters die during the adventure, the player may simply continue with those remaining.

Soundtrack[edit]

24 tracks, written and produced by Olivier Deriviere.

  1. Main Titles
  2. Empty School
  3. Something Hidden
  4. First Ones
  5. Blowing Up a Wall
  6. Being Surrounded
  7. Herbert Friedman
  8. Who is Herbert?
  9. Wickson, the Nurse
  10. Infested Place
  11. Give Us Eternity
  12. The First Queen
  13. Pure Suite
  14. Wickson and Leonard
  15. The Second Queen
  16. Gardener's Story
  17. Herbert's Secret Office
  18. Old Movie
  19. Friedman's Place
  20. Finding Leo
  21. Final Fight
  22. Leonard's Death
  23. Death
  24. End Titles

Some of the soundtrack can be downloaded from Olivier Deriviere's official website.[2]

There are also two tracks that play during the game that are not in the official soundtrack, "Still Waiting" performed by Sum 41 and "Baby's Come Back" performed by Span, but by mistake, the song in the Bonus Menu is "Don't Think The Way They Do" also performed by Span.

In the German version there were many songs from Sportfreunde Stiller. The Spanish version of the game features the song Supersonica performed by Dawholeenchilada for its ending credits. The music video for the song is unlockable as a bonus for completing the game. The French version of the game features the song Cinglés performed by Enhancer for its ending credits. The music video for that song is also unlockable as a bonus for completing the game.

Reception[edit]

Reception
Review scores
Publication Score
PC PS2 Xbox
CGW 2.5/5 stars[3] N/A N/A
Eurogamer N/A N/A 7/10[4]
Game Informer N/A 6/10[5] 6/10[5]
GameSpot 6.1/10[6] 6.4/10[7] 6.4/10[7]
GameSpy N/A 3/5 stars[8] 3/5 stars[9]
GameZone 6.7/10[10] 6/10[11] 6.7/10[12]
IGN N/A 7.6/10[13] 7.6/10[13]
OPM (US) N/A 2/5 stars[14] N/A
OXM (US) N/A N/A 5.5/10[15]
PC Gamer (US) 78%[16] N/A N/A
Detroit Free Press N/A 2/4 stars[17] N/A
The Sydney Morning Herald 3.5/5 stars[18] 3.5/5 stars[18] 3.5/5 stars[18]
Aggregate score
Metacritic 63/100[19] 65/100[20] 66/100[21]

The game received "mixed or average reviews" on all platforms according to the review aggregation website Metacritic.[19][20][21]

Sequel[edit]

Obscure II takes place two years later. The kids who survived are now at college living normal lives. They discover a strange plant on campus and things start going awry. The game was released for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2, Wii and PlayStation Portable. The franchise was abruptly halted due to the closure of Hydravision, who had intended to do a sequel and possibly a prequel. However, Final Exam is supposedly a reboot of the series and was released for PlayStation Network, Xbox Live and Microsoft Windows in 2013.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "DreamCatcher Ships Obscure in North America". GameSpot. April 6, 2005. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  2. ^ "Music". Olivier Derviviere. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  3. ^ Cook, Denice (July–August 2005). "Obscure" (PDF). Computer Gaming World (253): 88. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  4. ^ Reed, Kristan (September 29, 2004). "Obscure (Xbox)". Eurogamer. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  5. ^ a b Mason, Lisa (June 2005). "Obscure (PS2, Xbox)". Game Informer (146): 127. Archived from the original on April 9, 2008. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  6. ^ Todd, Brett (April 19, 2005). "Obscure Review (PC)". GameSpot. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  7. ^ a b Todd, Brett (April 19, 2005). "Obscure Review (PS2, Xbox)". GameSpot. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  8. ^ Hodgson, David (March 28, 2005). "GameSpy: Obscure (PS2)". GameSpy. Archived from the original on December 16, 2005. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  9. ^ Hodgson, David (March 28, 2005). "GameSpy: Obscure (Xbox)". GameSpy. Archived from the original on December 18, 2005. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  10. ^ Aceinet (April 17, 2005). "Obscure - PC - Review". GameZone. Archived from the original on October 2, 2008. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  11. ^ Bedigian, Louis (April 24, 2005). "Obscure - PS2 - Review". GameZone. Archived from the original on October 5, 2008. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  12. ^ David, Mike (April 13, 2005). "Obscure - XB - Review". GameZone. Archived from the original on May 13, 2008. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  13. ^ a b Dunham, Jeremy (April 6, 2005). "Obscure (PS2, Xbox)". IGN. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  14. ^ "Obscure". Official U.S. PlayStation Magazine: 95. June 2005. 
  15. ^ "Obscure". Official Xbox Magazine: 81. June 2005. 
  16. ^ "ObsCure". PC Gamer: 62. July 2005. 
  17. ^ Huschka, Ryan; Newman, Heather; Gardner, Omari (May 15, 2005). "RECENT VIDEO GAME RELEASES". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  18. ^ a b c Ring, Bennett (November 6, 2004). "Great concept". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  19. ^ a b "Obscure for PC Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  20. ^ a b "Obscure for PlayStation 2 Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 
  21. ^ a b "Obscure for Xbox Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved December 3, 2016. 

External links[edit]