Back in early July Holstin grabbed us desperately by the lapels and vomited horrible slime into our faces with this delightful sequence of combat concept that's not quite anything we've seen in survival horror or isometric action before, a smooth transition from an isometric to over-the-shoulder third person shooting.
You can now play an updated demo for Holstin that features just this combat, and for me at least it's working just as advertised. It's not as smooth as I'd like but it really delivers the promised experience on mouse and keyboard. (I've seen some people in the Steam discussions saying it's a bit hard to use on a controller at the moment, which is just the kind of thing that can get tweaked after a demo like this.)
PC Gamer's Andy Chalk described it as a game that's "breaking the laws of camera physics in an awesome way" and I can't help but agree. "It's quick and smooth, and not at all visually jarring," he said, "if anything, it reminds me a little bit of the famous Max Payne reload spin, in the way that it's not disorienting even though it so obviously should be."
For those who already enjoyed the previous Holstin demo, this one has you revisit the Janowski house from that one and also dive into a tunnel full of terrible infected townspeople and strange undulating slimy tendrils. The tendrils, I regret to say, are not your friends.
Holstin is set in 1992 in rural Poland, where your character goes searching for a missing friend in a town that's getting stranger and stranger due to some terrible deterioration from an unknown, decidedly supernatural presence. You'll have to scrounge and survive your way around the town while speaking to those few residents who, while decidedly infected and losing their grip on reality, can still answer your questions.
"A psychological survival horror game set in an eerie, isolated 90’s Polish town consumed by an ominous presence. You’ve come looking for answers, but everyone seems possessed by something foul. Explore the festering town, interrogate locals and fight ungodly manifestations to get to the truth," reads the official description.
I do love a festering town and ungodly manifestations. My obsession with cosmic horrors guarantees this.
You can find Holstin on Steam, where it has a demo featuring that compelling combat. It's developed by Polish indie studio Sonka, and doesn't yet have a review date.