Okay I just wanna start by saying this will be a shorter than usual review as the game barley allows me to talk about it for 100 words. Watch This! is a sc-fi “horror” where the player has a maze to tackle.
The player is streamed onto live TV with the performance of the player affecting the audience/family response. The game focuses on platforming puzzles and monsters that get in your way as you navigate. The game itself is very attractive, using the Unreal Engine to give everything a realistic shine and atmosphere. This is the main thing that kept me going as a lot of the gameplay is repetitious and boring which I’ll get to now.
When I describe the game as a Horror I’m simply being generous. Horror in Watch This is having the monster volume x3 the rest of the game and having the range of fish men and big daddies run after you. This is until you are a platform away and they have no clue what they’re supposed to do. The fish man in this photo just mirrored my movements and essentially froze its limbs in place. The sound really hurts you at moments like this, encounter music plays while the creature sees you, and if you are in a situation like this then the music keeps cutting off and then starting again, still at 3x the volume the game normally sits at.
The Mazes themselves are fairly dark and require you to find keys to unlock certain areas. You will only have a choice of two mazes which don’t really make for playing through more than once, everything feels and looks the same. The player avatar feels a bit too large, making for some awkward navigation through the tighter puzzles. Puzzles themselves are not exactly intellectual, they mainly require you to jump over a pit of spikes or avoid a saw moving left and right. You can find bonuses through the maze which give you certain abilities, mainly stopping or slowing time to help you do something.
While the main goal of the maze is to eventually get out I must admit there is a lot to interact with within it. Money is scattered around the maze and can be used to buy items for your family watching the show, the more items you buy, the more likely they are to just let you out. This makes the player want to explore more and try buy their way out, as to actually escape the maze you need to find the heart of some strange creature. I didn’t get this far as I just wasn’t having fun. Dying in the maze doesn’t bring any real consequences aside from starting again as you will always explore the same environment. This makes the whole maze feel like a chore rather than a new area you have to learn and explore each time. While i do enjoy the concept of performing for an audience and managing that while working your way out, I feel it has failed to hit the mark in this game.
I haven’t even mentioned the ass-hat that is the narrator. It’s some sort of family guy sounding dude trying to hit you hilarious comments whenever he can. But it’s just not that funny, mainly cringey in most places. I’m not sure if the game was developed my non-English developers as some of the sentences just get worse the more you read them, and the narrator speaks them out in this way as well. The example in the screenshot showing “You should’ve spend more time in gym” was just a joke in itself. That’s just the problem with this game, it feels rushed and doesn’t hold the content to keep you around for more than half an hour. I really do like the concept, with the right amount of thought and maybe a genre change it could work. The Culling does an excellent job at applying this theme to a survival/co-op genre which made it interesting. While a horror spin could work with the right cogs in the right places, having weird ass monsters bug out and scream at you isn’t the way to do that. This game is only going to be attractive to YouTubers who need to scream at something for money. I did really not enjoy Watch This.
With that said, the game scores a 4/10. Only hitting the high notes with the engine it lives in.