Jason is back to slash his way through FRIDAY THE 13TH THE GAME, one of the most innovative Multiplayer Online Games in ages (for PS4, XBox One, and Steam)
A few years ago, a small group of game developers set upon a task to bring a truly unique survival horror experience to consoles. IllFonic and Gun Media announced SUMMER CAMP MASSACRE VOL 1, a multiplayer online game where 7 players take control of camp counselors, while the 8th player takes control of a psychopathic murderer on a mission to rack up the highest body count possible. Sound familiar?
The game was said to be a throwback to the slasher films released during the Golden Age of Horror. It would include all the tropes of the genre, including an 80s style soundtrack and a grainy VHS aesthetic. It was also revealed that Tom Savini would be instrumental in creating the gruesome character deaths at the hand of the masked murderer. But some time passed, and not even a whisper of the game was made — until a cryptic message appeared on the game’s social media accounts, referencing a specific date.
As we all now know, the whole SUMMER CAMP MASSACRE VOL 1 was a big ruse for what was actually revealed to be FRIDAY THE 13TH THE GAME. Sean S. Cunningham teamed up with the developers to create a game that was closer in tone to the films than the 8-bit cult classic NES version from the 80s. In addition to Cunningham, Kane Hodder, the fan favorite Jason Voorhees, was also coming on board to perform the motion capture for the iconic killer.
After a long Kickstarter campaign, numerous delays, and fan anticipation reaching beyond a fever pitch…May 26th, 2017 was announced as the date we could all spend A Long Night At Camp Blood. Then fans began to wonder…could the Friday the 13th game live up to the hype? Would this erase the Nintendo version from our childhood? Could Jason be captured properly in video game form?
Let’s find out by taking a closer look at what the Friday the 13th game has to offer.
First things first, let’s look at the areas of gameplay. These are ripped directly from the first 3 films, as players can navigate their way through Higgins Haven from Part 3, Packanack from Part 2, and the iconic hallowed grounds of Camp Crystal Lake from the original film. Each map is detailed as it was seen in the films and makes the gamer feel as though they are truly in Jason’s domain. Word is the developers are looking to add more maps for future DLC to take the Friday the 13th game to the next level. Rumors of Camp Forest Green from Jason Lives, the Grendel from Jason X, and even the cruise ship from Jason Takes Manhattan have all been mentioned at one point in time.
GRAPHICS AND GAMEPLAY
While many of us are fans of the notoriously difficult NES version of Friday the 13th, with it’s Purple and Baby Blue Jason and 8-Bit imperfections, the graphics are a relic of the game’s time…a true time capsule of what entertained us as kids. Thankfully, this version features next gen graphics — while maintaining a bit of a cartoonish look that only adds to the 80s charm. The counselors all have a unique look and, when the fear kicks in, the faces are hilarious in a good way. You gain CP Points that can be used to Roll For Perks. Perks help you in the fight against Jason. You can sell duplicates, but you are limited to only 30, so choose wisely.
To jump back to the maps for a second, the developers have painstakingly crafted a beautifully digital version of the locations. You feel as though you are in the moment and can almost smell the pine in the woods or the burning wood in the fire pit. The game also takes advantage of the groundbreaking Unreal Engine, so controlling the counselors is a breeze. There are no complicated button combos to perform moves. However there are fun little mini games that involve you trying to repair one of 2 cars or a motorboat to try and escape the clutches of Jason. Speaking of Big J…
One of the unique features of the Friday the 13th game is actually getting to step behind the mask of Mrs. Voorhees’ Special Boy. Each Jason has specific strengths and weaknesses that will make it tough for you to choose which one to be during gameplay. You start the game with Jason Part 3 and automatically unlock the other playable Jasons as you play the game through gaining XP.
For those curious about the Savini Skin Jason, dubbed Hell Jason, he is as badass as you can imagine and was a gift for those who backed the game. There will be no way to get that skin.
Just as with the counselors, Jason also gets CP Points to gain newer, gorier kills to dispatch the other players. Jason also has 4 specific powers that unlock during play. Morph allows the player to jump to any specific spot on the map instantaneously. The most popular Morph spots are the 2 cars, the police exits and the motorboat. The other powers become available when all players hear the familiar Ki Ki Ki Ma Ma Ma.
Shift is a power where Jason can literally fast forward himself while in pursuit of a victim. Also players will be alerted he is using Shift, as the screen gets all out of wack like a VHS tape with tracking issues. Stalk is where Jason can make the soundtrack for the game shut off not to alert the other players he is near by. Sense is my favorite power, as Jason can literally sense where the players are on the screen by cabins, and counselors turn a bright, blood red. Jason has a Rage meter that fills up and allows him to just break doors with his body and perform other supernatural feats.
The counselors do have tools at their disposal to combat Jason and try to survive the match. Bear traps, firecrackers, pocket knives, speaker radios, and flare guns are just some of the other weapons at their disposal, and there is one more special item that will be mentioned at the end of this article. Machetes, axes, baseball bats and more can be used to fight back. Players can also try to escape Jason by calling the police. Those are all cool. But perhaps the greatest weapon in the game is only a one call away…
He was once known as “The Boy Who Killed Jason”. Now Tommy Jarvis is one of your best chances of survival in the game. He is the 2nd best character next to Jason. His stats are all maxed out, and he is crucial for performing one of the games trophies/achievements (which will be discussed at the end in detail). While Tommy is a bad ass character, it should be noted that a few things need to happen first to get him.
Firstly, one of the players must radio for help from a CB Ham Radio (remember those?) in a cabin that has a huge orange and white antenna on the side. Secondly, one or two players have to either escape or be killed by Jason. Lastly, one of the players not in play will be randomly selected to play as Tommy with an awesome cinematic cut scene. For those wondering, this is indeed the fan favorite Thom Matthews version of the character from Jason Lives.
Now, on the bad side, Tommy can be killed by Jason just as easily as the counselors, and he also goes into fear mode when Jason cuts the electricity or is near by. So remember that Tommy is not immune to Jason’s rampage. But he is the best “counselor” in the game.
If you’re a fan of the franchise, chances are you know a lot about the movies. Fortunately, the developers are also huge fans of the series, and they have peppered many Easter eggs into the game that will bring a smile to your face as you run scared from Jason. I won’t ruin any of them here. But if you know the movies, you’ll know them when you see them. I thought it was a cool little wink for the fans. One thing you should know is that doing certain things will unlock Badges, similar to being a Scout. In addition, the elusive Pamela Tapes are scattered randomly around the maps. These can only be found in a Public match, not in a private match.
This game is not 100% perfect, as there patches coming out all the time to fix issues. But the developers have been on their A game working tirelessly to make sure the game runs smoothly. I’ve only experienced a small amount of glitches and issues with hosting a match, but the good far outweighs the bad.
Also, I feel this would be a good time for a word of caution…if you choose to play a Public Match with people you don’t know, do so at your own risk! There’s no nice way to say this, but people are assholes and will do anything to survive the game, including turning on their fellow players. I’ve seen players fix the cars or boat and get killed by the other player so they can escape.
One of my friends told me he was in a Public Match, playing as Jason, and he ended up having to help the other players. Why? One of the players decided to start killing the others to be a spiteful little prick. Honestly, playing online is always like that…so just be aware of that fact, and you’ll be fine.
This is the most faithful movie adaptation game since Rockstar Games released THE WARRIORS back in 2006.
The game is loads of fun, especially when everyone is mic’d up. The developers have successfully created the perfect Friday the 13th game, and it truly is the most interactive experience a fan of the series can truly have, next to physically being chased by Jason in real life. All other budding and established developers should take note on how to properly handle an entertainment license. Here’s hoping these guys can do a A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET or HALLOWEEN game next, as they clearly understand exactly what it takes to make a great horror video game.
If you play the Friday the 13th game on PS4, feel free to add me (hiphophorrornerd), as I am currently obsessed with this game.
NOW FOR THE BIGGEST SPOILER OF THE GAME…HOW TO KILL JASON
*IF YOU DON’T WANT TO KNOW, NOW IS THE TIME TO TURN BACK*
Still here? Good! Here are the step-by-step instructions on how to kill Jason in the Friday the 13th game. Please note these must be followed exactly as written. Otherwise, you’ll have to start all over again.
- A player needs to radio for Tommy Jarvis.
- A female counselor must obtain Pamela’s sweater from Jason’s shack. Be careful as Jason will be alerted that you are there, so move quickly. Jason’s shack is at a random point on the map, so it changes each time, but check near the graveyard of each map.
- A player with a higher strength rating (like Buggzy) must use a machete or axe to knock Jason’s mask off of his face.
Now steps 2 and 3 can be done in any order, however if you choose to do Step 3 first, make sure the female counselor that will be getting the sweater is close, as she can grab Jason’s mask. Wearing the mask will not alert Jason you are in his shack. You will be tempted, but do not use the sweater’s power yet! I can’t stress this enough!
- At least 2 players must either escape or be killed by Jason. This ensures one of them will respawn as Tommy Jarvis.
- While Tommy comes equipped with a shotgun, it won’t do a lick of good to Jason but just knock him on his ass. Tommy needs to obtain a machete and only a machete.
- Tommy and the female counselor that has the sweater should close together. When Jason shows up, the female counselor that has the sweater should have a baseball bat as her weapon. Activate the sweater’s power, go into combat mode and aim for Jason’s head.
- Jason will drop to his knees and now Tommy must enter combat mode and aim for Jason’s head with the machete. On PS4, you need to press X for the cinematic cut scene of Jason’s death. Only Tommy and the counselor will receive the trophy/achievement for Killing Jason, so be aware of that fact and enjoy this killer game.