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Dementium: The Ward Review

Horror in the hospital

It would seem that the main man in Dementium: The Ward has suffered the same injury as the drummer from Def Leppard. Surely the only explanation for him being unable to carry a torch and a handgun at the same time is because he's lost an arm? Maybe it was chewed off by a zombie?

Whatever the reason, it's slightly annoying because the lights have gone out in this hospital and you can't see enemies in the distance without the aid of a torch. Yet if you want to shoot a zombie you'll have to put your torch away, equip your gun and either take a pot shot or wait for the beast to slowly crawl towards you. It's even worse when worms burst through air vents in the ceiling as, although you know they're in the vicinity, you have to wait until they're swarming around your ankles to shoot them down.

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The Fright Stuff

Of course this cheap trick adds a great deal of suspense to proceedings. Walking around in a dark psychiatric hospital on your own would be creepy enough but when you can't actually see where you're going it is actually quite scary. Especially when all you can hear is the moans of zombies or the squelchy noise of worms wriggling along the blood-stained floors. What makes matters worse is that you don't actually know what you're doing there.

It starts with you being wheeled through some hospital doors. As you look around, you'll see a creepy-looking girl who could be an extra from Silent Hill and an army of Resident Evil-style zombies. Then the action switches to a hospital bed and your character jerks forward quickly as if awakening from a nightmare, but as you wander around the building it soon becomes apparent that this is no dream. You'll encounter violent zombies sporting open chest wounds while the mysterious girl appears cryptically for brief moments every now and then.

The mystery does add to the suspense and gives you a reason to carry on playing what is in fact a slightly plodding first person shooter.

This isn't an action-packed blast as you won't be cocking your shotgun every few seconds to blow another zombie's head off but that's not to say it can't be a bit scary. Especially when a zombie just appears out of the darkness as soon as you open a door, or some buzzing undead fly heads straight towards your face at full tilt.

If you're not made of strong stuff, Dementium will really make you jump and the limited ammo might see you running away from the enemies, desperately trying to make it to the next door.

All that you can ask of a survival horror game is that it scares you and while Dementium might not give you nightmares, it'll certainly put you on edge as you play it, which is enough to make you ignore some of the more annoying, pedestrian moments here.

Comments

18 comments so far...
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  1. Doclector Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 11:29

    How many times has ONM reviewed this? I don't mean to sound insulting, but don't get my hopes up, is this actually coming out in the UK this time? :lol:

  2. NintendoWiiNath Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 11:53

    I want somthing scary to play, games nowdays arent really lol

  3. Super_Mario135 Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 14:24

    Looks good. I've never played a horror game on the DS before because I just coulden't imagine myself being scared of somthing on a small screen like the DS's. I might get it though.

  4. window Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 18:37

    What is this doing on the main page? Hasn't this been reviewed before? Are things a little slow this week?

  5. Don_Corleone Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 18:58

    Should've struck negative points due to a bad save system and a very short game.
    60% in my opinion

  6. fienno 123 Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 19:53

    Wasn't this reviewed ages ago?

  7. Astroboy Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 19:54

    The save system has been changed for the UK release (which is tomorrow according to Play.com).

    Now there are more checkpoints, so you don't have to restart the entire level. WOO!

  8. FliByFow Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 19:56

    How many times has ONM reviewed this? I don't mean to sound insulting, but don't get my hopes up, is this actually coming out in the UK this time? :lol:


    its out now, i think.

  9. nookAC Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 21:14

    I forgot about this wasnt it going to come out last summer might get it

  10. -mohsi- Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 21:22

    The save system is actually going to be fixed! I thought it was a good, atmospheric game which suffered from a short length and a rather underwhelming ending. I finished the game is exactly 2:30....veryyy short!

  11. Stulaw Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 21:48

    How many times has ONM reviewed this? I don't mean to sound insulting, but don't get my hopes up, is this actually coming out in the UK this time? :lol:

    It's out tomorrow, it took about 2 years to come out I think, the last time ONM reviewed it, it was cancelled just after the review was published.

    Good review, I wont be buying it as I'm quite tight on money atm.

  12. Dark_Dragon01 Thursday 16th Apr 2009 at 22:48

    Looks good. I want.

  13. NGamer37 Friday 17th Apr 2009 at 10:20

    horror game on the ds? noice...i shall get this 8)

  14. Super_Sonic96 Sunday 19th Apr 2009 at 08:45

    Review number 134 take 3....

  15. deityofanime Tuesday 21st Apr 2009 at 13:07

    When most 'great' games come out in the US with a release date in the UK far off I usually import them, as I did with Dementium. Just to let everyone know ONM has been giving this game too much praise. yes the graphics are nice however it's not all great; the enemies only have one character model each which they are so obscurely unsymmetrical can really spoil the mood when you see groups of them. At first the rooms all have subtle differences such as smashed objects and hanging broken lights ect however these variations seem to vanish towards the later half of the game. Finally after enduring the games grueling repetitiveness you are rewarded with a disappointing final boss and an unfulfilling ending.

  16. Broken_Angel Wednesday 22nd Apr 2009 at 11:01

    its really down to your own personal opinions and judgements. i found dementium to be a decent enough game. needed some improvements (glad to hear the save system has been sorted cos it was aweful) to the overall game. but considering how many first-person shooter/survival horror games there are for the DS, this has to be one of the best

  17. jake28597 Thursday 14th Jan 2010 at 18:45

    when my friend told mee about it i just laughed, ds scary 'yeah course' :roll:
    but i played it, at night! :shock: and i got very very scared :oops: i actually was so scared that i sold the game. i was a few rooms after the first zombie and now my friend tells me about the roofs....

  18. Everegreen Sunday 2nd May 2010 at 18:52

    Looks good. I've never played a horror game on the DS before because I just coulden't imagine myself being scared of somthing on a small screen like the DS's. I might get it though.


    i didn't think i could be scared by a game... until i played this

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