PS2 Haunting Ground – Software Publisher’s Description:

PS2 Haunting Ground review:

5 stars (Better than Silent Hill and Clock Tower 3!) – A very well-designed game! I bought this game because I loved Clock Tower 3, which share a similar mechanism with this game. When I tried Haunting Ground, I found that it is even better than its precedessor.

Pros:

  1. The idea of hiding place. Instead of carrying shotguns in the Silent Hill series, you are nearly ripped of any attacking power. Therefore, when you meet enemies, you either run away or hide. The seek-and-hide mechanism results in constant tensions in the game.
  2. Very, very clever AI design. You cannot hide in a place too many times because enemies will eventually find you. Later, I found that enemies become smarter and more careful, and may find you out even though you hide some place the first time!
  3. Very clever dog. You are not completely alone. You are accompanied by a white dog called Hewie in the game. Throughout the game, you have to constantly train the dog in attacking enemies and discovering secret objects. If you don’t, sooner or later the dog will constantly disobey you, and leave you in danger when being attacked by enemies.
  4. Short loading time. Short loading time is very important in this game since you have to escape from enemies from room to room. Long loading time will result in the lose of tension while being chased by enemies.
  5. Creepy enemies. The enemies in this game are all psychotic! The first enemy is a giant killer with only a 5-year-old mentality. His constant shout “My Darling” when chasing me. Looking at the behaviours of the second enemy, you will find that he (or she) is even more abnormal.
  6. Long gameplay. I have spent around 10 hours in this game (with some aid of walkthrough), and I have only found myself in the middle of the whole game.

Cons:

  1. Moderate Learning Curve. It takes some time to familarize yourself with the hiding places in the game. It is slightly harder than Clock Tower 3.
  2. The same enemies. I do not give the game a 5 in the fun factor because you encontered the same enemy every time in a phrase. Fortunately, their appearance is augmented by crappy cutscenes constantly in the game.
  3. Puzzles. The puzzles are somewhat difficult, although some will like them more challenging. They are usually partially explained, and occasionally, not explained.

Rent or buy? Buy it! You won’t regret! 5 stars (A twisted game of hide and seek) – I really enjoy this game. I love having Hewie around he really helps alot. The game has good music and a great storyline, But the best thing is panic mode I like panic mode even if it does almost always get you killed. It gives the game a life-like sense Fiona will stumble and fall and it makes you really want to help get her up and moving. The enemies are creepy and psychotic (especially the maid) but not that scary, Im not that creeped out by them as in compairison to the zombies in Resident evil where the enimies and gameplay made it really scary and I would not reallly want to go on playing. I guess thats a good thing though because I can play all the way through this game. All in all if you like survival horror games then you HAVE to give this a try.5 stars (It’s good!) – Oh, my. What an emotionally exhausting but brilliant game. It has a heart, albeit twisted, that is sorely lacking from most survival horror titles coming out these days. In a gaming world filled with tired knockoffs, “Haunting Ground” works sort of as an amalgamation of the best elements from “Resident Evil”, the “Clocktower” series, and “Silent Hill”, all put against the backdrop of an eerie, gothic European castle with about a million rooms, but surprisingly few places to hide.

While I absolutely love the “Fatal Frame” series and greatly enjoyed the fight-or-flight nature of “Clocktower 3”, I wasn’t prepared for the serious test of my brainpower that “Haunting Ground” was going to administer. The former titles had a tendency to give you at least somewhat discernible clues about what to do next, whereas “Haunting Ground” plays out much more like real life would (i.e. “figure it out, stupid”). I’m ashamed to say that I had to consult a couple of internet walkthroughs to even be able to conceive of what to do next. The clues you’re given in this game are going to be very cryptic and you will get lost on quite a few occasions in an attempt to find a new door, a new item, ANYTHING. If you’re looking for a game to spoon-feed you answers, this is NOT THE ONE!

Some players might prefer this approach, however, so if you’re a great puzzle-solver and even a little bit of a poet, you should have great fun with this title.