Five Nights at Freddy’s 4 – PC
Developer: Scott Cawthon
Publisher: Scott Cawthon
Release Date: July 23, 2015
Nerd Rating: 8 out of 10
If you look up “troll” in the dictionary, you will find a picture of Scott Cawthon holding a calendar and smirking at you. I was elated when I found out that Five Nights at Freddy’s 4 would be released on Halloween of 2015, and little inconvenienced when I found out it would have an earlier release date of August 8th, and then furious when I received a text message on the evening of July 23 that Freddy was out dominating Steam sales once again. The Fazbear Fandom is completely subservient to him now, and it’s safe to say that that fandom continues to include me.
In this game, you’re just a child, haunted by nightmarish versions of Bonnie, Chica, Foxy, and Freddy. There’s even new mini-versions of Freddy Fazbears, affectionately referred to as “Freddles” by the fan community. These Freddles will congregate if you leave them long enough and turn into Nightmare Freddy, a multi-headed demonic bear with a stellar top hat and a smile that says, “Yum, that child was delicious.”
I thoroughly enjoyed the direction this game went. It’s interesting to see these haunted animatronics from a traumatized child’s point-of-view. In the eyes of a child, everything is exaggerated. Any child back in the 80s or 90s could look at Chuck E. Cheese and see a creepy robotic nightmare. And no matter how frivolous the jumpscares, it’s difficult to deny the quality of the graphics and creative monsters that Cawthon produces. I feel like I’m really in some poor child’s bedroom, apprehensively checking the hallways and the closet, praying I don’t get caught. And of course, our beloved Bonnie, Chica, Freddy, and Foxy look like they’ve crawled straight out of Hell,
with their piercing eyes, rows of teeth, and even multiple faces, our fuzzy animal friends look as stunningly horrific as they ever have.
A lot of mysteries involving the lore of the franchise have been played out through Scott’s clever use of Atari-style graphics. Unfortunately, the ambiance and mystery that engrossed the illusive chain of grotesque pizzerias is lost, no long having the ‘fear of the unknown’ factor like the previous games. The first game was very subtle in its horror (aside from the freak jumpscares), leaving just enough to piece together what happened but leaving some things up in the air. Now I feel like I know too much. Call me crazy, but I found it sadistically satisfying to be kept in the dark on some aspects of the story so my mind could only imagine the worst.
As far as gameplay goes, it has improved very much since the initial release. Because Five Nights at Freddy’s 4 was ejaculated prematurely, there was a noticeable bug where a certain audio mechanic was just barely audible. Since this mechanic was absolutely required for survival, there was massive feedback on it, and at the time of this review, the issue has been fixed.
Traditionally, the goal of the Five Nights at Freddy‘s games was to be as agile and observant as possible. In Five Nights at Freddy’s 4, however, that style has drastically changed. Being observant is still key, but instead of being quick to close doors or check lights, you must pace yourself, sacrificing 3 or 4 seconds of your sanity and listen for the sound of the animatronics “breathing” right at your door. This is vital to whether or not you get your face mauled (and of course, the mechanic that was not working upon the game’s release).
So, yes, Scott Cawthon, you make good games. Even if the jumpscares are getting somewhat tired, Five Nights at Freddy’s 4 is a substantial game that’s intense, interesting, and keeps you on your toes. The gameplay is different but very easy to catch onto and is actually quite fun, forcing you to pace yourself, further increasing paranoia of murderous children’s icons on your back and the characters look fantastically scary. This is supposedly the very last installment of the series, with DLC coming out on Halloween. Other than that, it’s been a great roll in the hay with these characters, and I’m so glad that they’re finally being put to rest-
At least, I’m glad to see these characters be put to rest until the Hollywood Train of Ruining of Awesome Things derails this franchise into a ditch of mediocrity.
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