The next upcoming outing from MadMind Studios, Paranoid, has just had a new trailer released. Before I get into this piece properly, I want to put a trigger warning in place. This stands for all content related to Paranoid. This is something I haven’t really had to do before, but the devs themselves have put in a content warning for things such as sexualised violence.
Although this may not affect everyone, I feel it very important on my end that we acknowledge those who could be. And remember, you are not alone, you are loved, you are important. This game also deals with mental health and addiction. At this point in time, we don’t know how involved all of these things are, or how they are treated, but I promise I will do my best to keep you all up to date.
What is Paranoid? Let’s break it down
Paranoid is the first-person horror that tells the story of Patrick Calman. Patrick lives alone, in the apartment he inherited from his parents. For many years, Patrick has struggled with his mental health and with addiction, in the wake of a family tragedy. One family member is still alive, a sister, who disappeared 13 years prior. A mystery phone call comes through, and suddenly Patrick’s sister is coming back.
The trailer opens on a street, and it sounds like there’s some kind of aircraft overhead. It’s night time. Pan to a city street. A police car drives by. A voice kicks in, and I think this is what got me about the trailer. He sounds like a conspiracy theorist, or like the voice in my head when I’m having a breakdown. A person is walking through the street, the camera follows. It’s a little unclear if this is our protagonist or not. For about 15 seconds, the trailer gets a tad messy. Sort of looks like it should be from a game 20 years ago. Back to walking down the street, and there’s the voice again.
The rest of the trailer is mostly flashing images, and jump cuts of different locations. The narrator is replaced by a song, but I cannot for the life of me find any details on it. Which is a pity, because it’s a nice song. Once again, back to the street, and the narrator returns. Pan up on a motel, with a female figure in the window.
Horror queen’s thoughts
Here’s the thing. This trailer made me uncomfortable. I still cannot put my finger on why. I’m pretty sure it’s the voice of the narrator, what he’s saying. If you start looking at the comments under the video, you’ll actually notice people pointing out the actual editing. And the animation. Plus lots of comparisons to the likes of Condemned.
There is one glaring problem, and I can’t be the only person to point this out. Actually, again if you look at video comments, I’m not. This game is coming from the same people who made Agony. I will never forget that disaster. Even though Unrated improved upon everything, that whole process was hell. And this is coming from someone who enjoyed Unrated. I also don’t know how well the studio is going to handle the very delicate topic of mental health. At this point in time, I’m more morbidly curious than anything. The game is set to be a Steam exclusive, so we can already guess fairly confident that things will be graphic. Also, if anyone knows the song that plays in the middle of the trailer, please let me know.
But honestly, after Agony, I am not holding out hope. Maybe I’ll be pleasantly surprised, and I will 100% play this eventually with an open mind.
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