Ever since it was announced in 2015 that IllFonic and Gun Media’s slasher game “Slasher Vol. 1: Summer Camp” was announced to be the new “Friday the 13th: The Game,” horror fans have been hanging on every screenshot, piece of concept art, and trailer that has been teased out of the developers. As the day draws near for us to face the hockey mask, IGN has graced us with a full 18 minutes of gameplay to watch repeatedly until the game’s release. One can never go wrong with anything Friday the 13th.
Unlike the footage shown at E3 2016, which showed Jason and his multiple skills and kills, this new footage is from the other playable characters: the counselors. Dressed in costumes fitting for the film settings of the 80s and helped by a certain Voorhees nemesis in Tommy Jarvis, the players used a tactic rarely seen in the source movies: Teamwork.
Armed with voice chat, the players looked over a set of objectives that could lead to their escape. With locations straight out of the films, they search frantically for anything that can be used as weapons, distractions, and escape, while trying to keep to the shadows and to hold on to that precious stamina to run when they have to.
Any time the ultimate killer comes near them, custom tension music from Harry Manfredini himself shocks your earholes, and the need to panic and run sets in. As the hockey-masked slasher comes out of the shadows, players learn who their friends are, as some stick to distract or even try to stun or injure Jason, and others scatter like cockroaches in a flashlight. While the devs have said it is possible to defeat him, it would take a monumental feat, and escape is more likely.
Watching players fall one by one, some hope comes to life as the counselors manage to call in Thom Matthews’ Tommy Jarvis to fight alongside them. After players manage to knock Jason down, they stand by, stunned as he rises again after a few moments. Seeming to appear everywhere, they manage to get the battery, gas, and keys together to get a car going and begin to drive away. In a final move that would make Leatherface proud, Jason appears near the car just as it drives away for safety.
After the developers began work on Slasher Vol. 1: Summer Camp, they said they were approached by the creator of the Friday the 13th franchise, Sean Cunningham, about the “Friday” license. On their backerkit site, they say:
“Sean came to us in early 2015, but we quickly discovered these weren’t the normal business conversations you would have when you try to secure a license as important as Friday the 13th. It was totally different. It was a conversation built on mutual admiration and respect for what each had created. Sean immediately noticed the passion we had for Friday the 13th, and after several incredible meetings over the next few months, we decided to upgrade our plans for Summer Camp and embrace the Friday the 13th video game license. After several incredible meetings over the next few months, Sean surprised us by offering the Friday the 13th video game license.”
In the coming months it was announced that in addition to help from Cunningham, series composer Harry Manfredini would be back to do the music, original special effects legend Tom Savini would work on Jason’s iconic designs, franchise favorite actor Kane Hodder would be heading up the motion capture work of Jason and supervising the camp counselor actors. If you’re a fan of the movies, the ensemble couldn’t get any better than that.
As the kickstarter and subsequent pre-orders reached ever higher milestones, more content and fan service has been added to the game. These include characters, costumes, and locations from the films, and different “skins” for Jason, including the “potato sack” and different post-hockey mask versions of the killer.
While a friends and family beta is active this weekend, a second beta period is opening on December 20th, 2016 through December 23rd for Kickstarter backers and people who pre-order. There are still many packages to choose from their pre-order page, ranging from digital to physical copies, collector’s editions, and a virtual cabin that will serve as a developer’s diary.
You can check out both the E3 2016 Jason footage and IGN’s counselor footage below and line yourselves up for slaughter by picking the game up at the game’s site. Let us know if you’ll be playing the game during its beta period or when the game releases in the spring. We’ll be waiting here to take our turns behind the mask.
Friday the 13th: The Game will release in spring of 2017, with a single-player addition coming in the summer of 2017.
E3 2016 “Jason” Footage