The Blair Witch is back, folks!
In the first big development in the franchise since 2016’s sequel, Microsoft has unveiled Bloober Teams’ Blair Witch at their E3 conference. The title appears to be a horror game in which you search for missing children in the woods. From what we can tell, it’ll be played in first-person perspective and I’d imagine it’ll feature a lot more running and hiding rather than blasting monsters with guns.
Probably the best way of finding out how Blair Witch is going to play is checking out Bloober Teams’ other horror titles, like the Layers of Fear series and the mostly excellent Observer (who can turn down cyberpunk horror starring Rutger Hauer?) Common to all of their games is extreme psychological horror, in which the environment turns nightmarish and rooms collapse in on themselves.
— Xbox Game Pass (@XboxGamePass) June 9, 2019
Those with long memories will know that this isn’t the first time the Blair Witch franchise has appeared in interactive form. The early 2000s saw the release of a trilogy of survival horror titles in the series, subtitled Rustin Parr, The Legend of Coffin Rock and The Elly Kedward Tale. Let’s not beat around the bush though, these games were absolutely terrible. They released to dire reviews and rock bottom sales (the final outing in the trilogy saw just 8,500 sales in its first year or release).
I’m betting that with Microsoft’s heft behind them, this installment in the Blair Witch franchise is going to be a teeny bit more popular. The brief snatch of footage we saw here looks promising, with my only caveat being that it seems like it’d make a fantastic VR game in the mold of Resident Evil 7. Microsoft’s Xbox doesn’t have a VR headset though, so the chances of any development time being allocated to this are minimal. That said, I wouldn’t rule out an appearance on Sony’s consoles some way down the line.
Blair Witch will release on PC and Xbox One on August 30th.