We may earn a commission when you buy through links in our articles. Learn more.

New Steam horror game is a “more horrible Resident Evil”

We caught up with the developers of new indie horror game Crow Country at WASD to chat about its Resident Evil and Silent Hill inspirations.

A purple haired blocky videogame figure raises a red laser gun at a monster in a dark, dingy hallway

The survival horror genre has birthed some of the best franchises ever made. There’s Resident Evil and Amnesia, Silent Hill and Outlast to name but a few. New indie horror adventure Crow Country is hoping to channel the sinister sparkle that made these games so great, and at WASD 2024 we asked creative director Adam Vian how SFB Games’ upcoming thriller hopes to innovate on its predecessors.

At first glance, Crow Country looks like the original Resident Evil. There are bizarre, almost doll-like characters whose limbs look detachable (they most certainly are), the music oozes PS1 era eeriness – all of the hallmarks of Capcom’s iconic survival horror game are there.

Yet Vian tells us that Crow Country is “more horrible than Resident Evil,” pulling inspiration from Konami’s Silent Hill to create something that isn’t as sensational and paranormal, but is a little grittier than what we’ve come to expect from Capcom.

YouTube Thumbnail

“On the psychological side, it’s more Resident Evil” he tells us in an exclusive WASD interview. “It’s more tangible, it’s more real. It’s not so paranormal like Silent Hill. But, it is further towards Silent Hill in terms of how unpleasant and disturbing it can be.

“I wanted it to be more horrible than Resident Evil, but more tangible than Silent Hill,” he continues. “Resident Evil isn’t especially tedious or unsettling, whereas Silent Hill is – I like that about Silent Hill. But [Crow Country] doesn’t have that abstract supernatural stuff in it because I found that harder to follow.”

Vian does note that he drew inspiration from Silent Hill 3’s Lakeside Amusement Park for Crow Country’s setting, given it’s his “favorite horror game” – so don’t worry, there’s definitely an undertone of all things Konami.

A blocky character stands in a colorful arcade

Much of your Crow Country adventure is, as you may imagine, taken up by solving good ol’ fashioned puzzles. Now, when it comes to puzzle games, oftentimes a particularly fiendish conundrum can end in a yeeted controller and swift uninstall. We ask Vian how the team has struck the balance between intensely difficult problem solving and being overly forgiving.

“I want the puzzles to be initially kind of baffling, and then after a couple of minutes you go ‘oh okay, I think I know what’s going on,'” he says. “You feel clever because you feel like maybe you’ve done the thinking.

“I don’t want anyone to get fully stuck, but I do want that feeling of old school games where you’d get stuck quite a lot. That kind of thing is quite nice, but it is tricky because modern audiences expect to kind of breeze through a game. The issue nowadays is that, if a game’s too difficult or if they get stuck, they might just stop playing because they’ve got 16 other games that they might go and play.”

A blocky character stands in a room with a coffin in the centre on black and white tiles, next to a large grandfather clock

It’s a difficult tightrope to walk, but as someone who’s been desperate to get her hands on Crow Country, I’m intrigued to see how Vian and the team has approached that conundrum and whether or not they have found that perfect middle ground.

If all of this sounds like your kind of thrill, the Crow Country release date is set for Thursday May 9. However, if you want to take it for a spin, there’s a demo out on Steam that’s playable right now.

But if you do love wracking your brains and deciphering obscure computations, we have a list of all the best puzzle games for your perusal. Or, if you’re looking for more PS1-esque adventures, we have a rundown of all the best old games, too.

You can also follow us on Google News for daily PC games news, reviews, and guides, or grab our PCGN deals tracker to net yourself some bargains.

Additional reporting by Nat Smith at WASD for PCGamesN.