Gun Interactive PS5 Sumo Nottingham Texas Chain Saw Massacre Texas Chain Saw Massacre Review The Texas Chain Saw Massacre The Texas Chain Saw Massacre Review

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre Review (PS5) – An Incredibly Faithful And Fresh Take On The Asymmetric Multiplayer Genre

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre PS5 Review – In 1974, Tobe Hooper would write and direct one of the scariest films ever created. The premise was simple, and the execution was perfect. Ahead of its time, even. The unsettling, macabre, and insane Texas Chain Saw Massacre would go on to inspire film and pop culture, and originated many of the cliches, that we see in what is now known as the slasher sub genre.

Such inspirations would include franchises that have since tried their hand at asymmetrical multiplayer horror games, such as Friday the 13th, Predator, or impressive newcomers such as Dead By Daylight. It is only right then, that the Texas Chain Saw Massacre gets a turn, but can the originator surpass the other franchises in the genre?

Texas Chain Saw Massacre Review (PS5) – An Incredibly Faithful And Fresh Take On The Asymmetrical Multiplayer Genre

The Sawyer Family Slaughterhouse

Sumo Nottingham and Gun Interactive’s asymmetrical multiplayer, survival horror game is actually less asymmetrical than other offerings you might be familiar with in the genre. The key difference being that rather than one antagonist, there are three.

Three players will take control of the family, with the only caveat being that one player has to be Leatherface. Armed with the chainsaw, Bubba starts in his lair below the estate, with a brief opportunity at taking out the victims on his own. Two other players will have to pick from the remaining four family members.

The others are The Hitchhiker, and Cook, who fans will remember as Nubbins and Drayton Sawyer from from the 1974 film. Their likeness, voices, and mannerisms are superbly captured, like they’re taken right out of the frames of the movie itself. Meanwhile, the remaining two characters are original designs in the form of Siblings Johnny, and Sissy.

Johnny is considered a more traditional serial killer type, who utilises a tracking ability which is quite fitting. Lastly, Sissy is a runaway cultist who can lace items with poison or blow poison to create obstacles for the victims, as she gleefully sings as the Sawyer family terrorise their victims.

Who Will Survive?

At a glance, it might seem as though Leatherface is the must-play character, but once you get into it, you quickly realise that this is not the case. The game is so well balanced with its antagonists, that all of them are fun to play; all of them have their pros and their cons.

Whether its combining the Hitchhikers traps with Sissy’s poison, or Cook’s radar-like hearing with Johnny’s ability to track footsteps, there are multiple ways to approach a game and take out the survivors, and that helps create some awesome and intense organic gameplay moments.

There is one family member who isn’t playable, but can drastically impact the course of a game. Grandpa Sawyer. Known as the greatest killer there ever was, an old and immobile Grandpa will be placed in a different location at the beginning of each match. Feeding Grandpa Sawyer with enough blood will see him slowly level up, letting out a haunting scream, that will detect any victim who moves, in a sonar-like fashion, increasing in frequency with each level.

Playing as the Sawyer family is a ton of fun, which is only amplified by how faithfully they’ve been captured for the game. Playing a group of three rather than one solo slasher, creates a fresh and different dynamic that is so well balanced that it never feels unfair.

On the opposite side of the playing field, four other players will take control of the victims who are tasked with escaping by any means necessary. Work together or work alone, do whatever you have to do to survive.

What Will Be Left Of Them?

As the victims, you will be sneaking around various sections of the Sawyer estate, trying to find ways to escape the nightmare. Find a fuse to unlock the basement door briefly, or shut off a cattle grid to escape down the road, or perhaps turn off an electrified fence and pick the lock on a gate. There are plenty of options to keep the Sawyer family guessing.

This simple approach makes for excellent moments, in that there has been occasions where I’ve witnessed my fellow survivors being brutally murdered, but decided to remain still and quiet as to be the one who could escape.

Other occasions I worked with my teammates to carve out a quick route to freedom. With each victim also having a special ability, working together can often lead to the best results. Although, the family might have something to say about that; it’s very easy to get split up.

I mostly took to playing as Connie as her ability to quickly pick lock a door is incredibly useful, but be warned, use it wisely, as it comes with a lengthy cooldown, and you might be without it when you need it most.

The impressive balance and simplistic approach to completing objectives that Sumo Nottingham has implemented lends itself well to creating tense and scary moments, that will keep you pining for one more game, when you promised yourself you’d go to bed an hour or two ago.

Creeping around the basement as the sounds of Leatherface’s chain saw rattles off down the hallway drawing closer, hiding in a sunflower field as the sun bakes down only to hear Sissy creepily singing near you, or nearing the exit and suddenly stumbling into a trap laid by the Hitchhiker are just some of the intensely scary and atmospheric moments this game has to offer.

Detailed Skill Tree And Lacklustre Cosmetics

As you play the Texas Chain Saw Massacre, you will level up and earn attribute points, which can be applied to all characters on the roster.

The two skill trees essentially require you to create a specific build, with different passive abilities, that can really prove useful. Having a character I can use that highlights doors or interactive objects as I use them provides a ton of utility for when I’m playing solo, as that’s now information I don’t need to verbally communicate.

Other such passive abilities like being to carry or draw more blood to give to grandpa, burst through doors as Leatherface, or being able to rev the chain saw in one pull of the cord, will require experimentation to find what’s right for your play style. Inversely, whilst the skill trees are quite comprehensive, there are barely any cosmetics to speak of to unlock as you progress for anyone who isn’t Leatherface.

Two iconic costumes are available for Bubba which is appreciated especially as a fan of the series, but nothing for the other family members, and only recolours for the victims is unfortunately lacklustre. I’m sure they will release more with future updates, but it is somewhat barren in that respect at launch.

What Happened Is True

Truly reminiscent of the 1974 horror classic, Sumo Nottingham recreated the feeling of terror I felt watching the original film, and in some cases ratcheted it up. The presentation in Texas Chain Saw Massacre helps capture the atmosphere perfectly. The feeling that the horror unfolding not far away from a normal world, off of a highway in rural Texas, where no one is the none the wiser, is very apparent here.

The Texas Chain Saw Masscre is often beautiful with its environmental design, stunning skyboxes as the sun sets over a rustic slaughterhouse; almost peaceful, if it weren’t for a cannibalistic family terrorising a group of unfortunate victims. Furthermore, temendous sound design that inspires fear and anxiety, married with a smooth gameplay experience, all combine to create a near thematically perfect Texas Chain Saw experience.

My biggest complaint would be that on a handful of occasions I was unexpectedly dropped from the game back to main menu, oddly as I was nearly escaping on almost every occasion. One of which I blocked off a key interactive object for a teammate as my character model was stuck there. I will say this hasn’t been too common, but has happened more than I would like.

Despite those minor hitches, Texas Chain Saw Massacre is the best in class for asymmetric multiplayer horror games. Sumo Nottingham understood what made the 1974 groundbreaking, horror classic so terrifying and masterfully applied it to a video game, creating one of scariest games 2023 has to offer.

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is available now for PS5, PS4, PC, Xbox Series X/S, and Xbox One.

Review code kindly provided by publisher.



The Final Word

Sumo Nottingham's fresh take on the asymmetric multiplayer genre is greatly welcomed. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre offers an intense horror experience when playing as the victims, and is equally as fun as chasing them down as the twisted Sawyer family. Faithfully capturing the iconic characters, and what made the original film so great, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is a best in class of the genre.