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2022-09-19 13:52:54

Than Trung or The Death is the first horror adventure game of the relatively young DUT studio with a very small scale, with only 3 members participating in development. Experience the game set in Hanoi in 2022, bringing players into the role of hard youth Do The Dung to find a place to study in the famous Tran Duy Hung street. However, in the process of asking for information from local people, the main character hears that the rented inn is haunted and this woven story does not stop there.

From the perspective of a longtime horror game player, the biggest plus of Than Trung is the familiar images in everyday life, from the very typical shop signs to the neighborhood scene and built inns. built as an experience area. Even objects are things you easily come across in everyday life. Their appearance contributes significantly to making the game experience a bit more scary when combined with the classic but not enough scare screens.

In fact, Shen Chong’s graphics are not impressive. The plus point of this aspect only stops at the level of creating a familiar feeling similar to Paper Dolls. The minus point of the game’s graphics is that the rendering lacks three-dimensional depth, not giving the writer the feeling of being immersed in the world of the game. Most are still images and often appear fixed rather than animated. The first few minutes of the experience also include simple movement to create a tense atmosphere, but from chapter 2 onwards only still images and sound are used.

The level of detail of the object is also not high due to the low resolution of the texture, it is difficult to avoid the feeling of objects in the background, and the interaction looks blurry, although this may be the developer’s design intent. While such a design is quite effective with a typical game experience, in some cases it has the opposite effect of the scares that the developer wants to install. Worth mentioning, Than Chong sets the default brightness to very low, many segments are so dark that the writer can’t see anything through the dim light from the character’s throttle.

This inadvertently turned many scare segments into ineffectiveness. In many scenes like that, everything was so blurry that I didn’t even have time to see and realize what the image in front of me was to be afraid of, it had disappeared. Many times this happens, causing the stress level to gradually decrease with the game experience and the length of play. This is not a small minus point because Than Trung plays a lot of scare games. On the other hand, the developer also does not allow you to tweak the graphics, but only choose between presets, not customizable.

The listening aspect of the game also has many issues worth discussing. One of them is that Than Chong has no background music and only uses sound and noise, making the game experience unable to maintain a constant sense of tension to create leverage for scary segments. Moreover, these scenes often abuse the technique of increasing the volume to be very startling rather than instilling a feeling of fear in people’s hearts. Leaving the most mixed feeling is the voice acting of the NPCs, which sounds like ‘parody’ instead of creating emotions for the character’s dialogue.

Review game Than Worm

Although it is known that the size of the game is very small based on the price and playing time of Than Chong, the developer’s “homemade” voiceover solution inadvertently destroys the distinctive and emotional atmosphere. of the player. These are all pretty important things for the horror game genre. That’s not to mention the voiceover lacks a sense of environmental space. For example, the main character standing in the alley talking in the middle of the night, but listening to the clear voice recorded in a closed room. Small problem but can be done better.

The gameplay of Than Chong is nothing special, just a “walking simulation” with luggage for you to interact with objects and doors. Experience a linear design game with familiar trial and error gameplay. Players must make sequential requests, requiring you to go around looking for the right door for the key you just collected. The game also has collectibles to unlock the ‘true ending’, but they were so obvious that I fortunately didn’t hit the ‘bad ending’ on my first playthrough.

Due to its short duration, the puzzle aspect in Shen Chong is also very limited. The game has only two notable puzzles, the Tower of Hanoi and the Dong Ho painting puzzle, plus a “cracking” puzzle when you meet the conditions for the ending that the writer temporarily calls beautiful. If you experience it a little more carefully instead of doing it wrong, the game is completely worthless. Even if you get a bad ending, the writer does not feel that the “beautiful ending” is worth the effort of replaying despite its short duration.

Review game Than Worm

The reason is because the plot is built quite simply and predictable, with no unexpected twists. Much of the story is told through flashbacks that the protagonist hears from NPCs. Although the game is Than Trung, this detail is only explained very briefly near the end of the experience. The developer does not have variations or provide more information about the related spiritual culture to attract players, such as mentioning the famous Ham Long pagoda in Bac Ninh.

Than Worm also has a few other issues that I can’t help but mention. The first is that the foreign language translation is not good and confusing. Speaking of which, even the Vietnamese subtitles do not completely match the Vietnamese dub, but there are still redundant words. Although this is only a small minus point like a rabbit for domestic players, it is not a small problem for players who do not know Vietnamese. Annoyingly frustrating is the operation of using the item due to the unintuitive key setting.

Moreover, the developer does not allow the reassignment of keys in accordance with the experience habits of each player. The feeling of controlling the character to move is not as smooth as the performance of the game. It’s quite unfortunate that Than Trung does not support controllers at the time of writing. That’s not to mention a lot of game bugs that still exist, some of which are just annoying, but there are also very frustrating bugs. The auto-save feature is also problematic in some cases, but it doesn’t allow manual saving of the game.

Review game Than Worm

After all, Than Worm or The Death offers a pretty good creepy adventure experience for the price and length of play. The biggest plus point of the game is the close context, familiar visual design and especially well depicting the spiritual cultural characteristics of the Vietnamese people. However, the game is designed quite simply with a very slow pace and lack of gameplay highlights, leading to an experience that is not really satisfying for believers who like the feeling of being scared. However, it is undeniable that DUT studio has done quite well considering this is the first game of a development team of only 3 people. Hopefully the following products have better care and investment.

Than Chong is available for PC (Windows).

The Death |  God Worm
The Death |  God Worm

DUT Studio


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