Here we are again. Another week, another Nintendo eShop sale featuring games for under $2.00 at a 90% discount. So I took the plunge on two more games this week to determine if these are worth grabbing at a low price, or if these are some cheap trash you shouldn’t waste your money on.

This time, these two games are on the spooky side! I do love me some horror games, and at a cheap price, that makes it even better. Are they worth it? I guess look below to find out.

Midnight Evil

  • Developer: Nathan Sanders, Impulse Game Studios, LLC
  • Publisher: Draw Distance
  • Original Price: $9.99
  • Discounted Price: $0.99

Midnight Evil is a simple horror game that gives me vibes of Five Nights at Freddy’s. Instead of checking out cameras to catch the horrors that lurk in a pizza joint, instead you are trying to read through a book in your bedroom as creatures try to sneak up on you. Keep up the volume, otherwise you may not hear them as they draw near.

The story is about a child who discovers a book in his attic one night. Unfortunately he learns the hard way that uncovering the book also leads to gremlin-like monsters called Urklings trying to devour him. The only way to stop the Urklings is to read through the book which in turn “captures” them. The Urklings don’t make it easy though as they try to hide in your room as you progress in the story and the only defense is spotting them before they leap up and feast on your bones.

The gameplay works enough for what it is trying to achieve. The room has several places for the Urklings to hide and at times they can blend in if you look too quickly. Sounds can be heard when they sneak in, usually at the end of sentences, indicating to put the book down and glance around the room. For the Urklings to hide again, the crosshair must come in contact with them which can be a little finicky due to how quick it moves and can easily overshoot where you want to look. I lost many times because of this.

When you do move the crosshair down to bring the book back up, you are treated to the lore of the Urklings. It describes their tribes and gives some backstory of victims although none of it is what I would call super engaging, especially since you constantly keep an ear out for sounds of the Urklings sneaking in.

Midnight Evil isn’t going to creep you out and at most give you some loud jump scares if you aren’t paying attention…or having trouble with the reticle. However I wouldn’t call it a bad game and at worse call it repetitious with where Urklings hide and the general back and forth of room gazing. There is a sense of humor in the room decorations and the radio DJ that gives this an almost B-horror movie feel. If these type of horror games are your bread and butter, this one will fit in nicely.

DID I HAVE FUN?

Shut Eye

  • Developer: HUSH Interactive
  • Publisher: Forever Entertainment
  • Original Price: $3.99
  • Discounted Price: $0.39

If Midnight Evil didn’t do it for you due to the Urklings, Shut Eye is pretty similar with different terrors waiting for you to let your guard down. Midnight Evil involved less shadows and environmental tone, but Shut Eye does have those two things going for it although the overall personality is non-existent.

In Shut Eye, you play as a kid who wakes up in the middle of the night to find a handful of things coming to get you. One moment it may be a garden gnome, the next may be a mechanical crab with a baby head ala Toy Story‘s Sid’s creation. Using a battery-dwindling flashlight to lower your anxiety and a music box to calm the nightmares, you must survive night after night with them growing increasingly more eager to kill you.

Each new day moves the time required to survive up by one hour with the ending time remaining the same at 7am. As the time to survive grows, the amount of time for the creatures to get close shortens with each day. Managing both the flashlight to reduce anxiety and music box to push back the monsters at the risk of increased anxiety becomes a chore, especially when waiting for batteries to respawn.

Much like Midnight Evil though, it’s extremely repetitious. Each night is the same thing, except here, there’s no real life behind any of it. There’s no story being told and nobody speaking to you. It’s just the act of keeping the enemies at bay over and over again for no real reason. Even the smallest of narrative could do something for Shut Eye. Instead, it boils down to playing until you get bored, which doesn’t take long to achieve.

Shut Eye could have been something cool. Framing it around a child fearing the night is a simple fix and adding in more things to torment the kid would have helped too. Sadly it does so little, and in a genre ripe with games just like this, there’s no real reason to keep an eye on this one.

DID I HAVE FUN?

There we have it for these Bait and Switch games. Very similar but one stood out a little more to me than the other. Hopefully these quick impressions were enough to give you an idea whether to avoid or give these games a try next time you see these pop up in a sale.

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