Upon entering PAX East yesterday, I was immediately thrilled by all the flashing screens and the many people rushing about to play the games they displayed. I was also at a total loss for where to start. Descending to the show floor, one booth caught my eye. Not because it had the longest lines or the coolest merch, but because of one interesting image. A classic Disney-esque character a la Steamboat Willie. But creepier. I recognized this character as Bendy, from the horror puzzle game Bendy and the Ink Machine. Having heard about the game but never played, I decided to give it a go.
I found myself in a workshop looking for a device that would open a special door. Simple enough. I found the device, stuck it on the door, and opened it. Nothing out of the ordinary just yet. That puzzle was quite simple and while the atmosphere was kind of odd there was nothing scary about it. Entering a library I found another puzzle involving pushing books into shelves in order to open a private area. At one point, I pushed a book and lights began to flicker. A slightly harder puzzle and a slightly creepier ambiance but nothing to sweat over. Bendy and the Ink Machine was getting warmed up, but it didn’t plan on being a slow burn.
I then found myself in a two story room with a balcony. Looking down into the center I spied a group of odd looking figures. Animatronics perhaps, yet they appeared to be warming their hands by a fire. Bumping into a can of paint, I pushed it down to their level. They pounced on it, and I was informed that I could use this as a distraction. Whatever they were made of, I didn’t want to get too close. Gathering more paint cans I proceeded down to the first floor. It didn’t seem like they noticed me at first, but right when I had almost made it down the hallway next to them they went into a frenzy. Being chased by anything is scary, with the possible exception of a playful puppy, but the herky-jerk motions of these creatures made their pursuit especially unsettling. Although they almost got me, I managed to evade them by returning to the second floor before trying again, this time using the paint as a distraction. It worked. At least until I made it to the end and one of them popped out from behind me before the screen cut to black.
This section of the game will be a part of chapter four of Bendy and the Ink Machine. Developer and publisher TheMeatly Games will release it later this month. Until then, chapters one, two, and three are out on Stream for $5.99 each. Chapter five will then finish the game up. After all of the chapters are released, one final package containing the full five chapters of the game will come out for consoles.
TheMeatly Games has no plans to continue the story after this final release. Each chapter adds on to the one before it, and they don’t want players to feel like they should always be waiting for another. The team also wants to pursue other things. When asked about the decision to end the game after the fifth chapter, senior programmer Matt Goles replied, “we really need a break from black and yellow.” The fifth chapter will wrap the story up once it releases towards the end of this year.
Until then, check out the creepy trailer for the fourth chapter below: