Fans of Sega’s House Of The Dead franchise have long been clamoring for a new entry in the franchise but it has remained mostly dormant since House Of The Dead 4 launched in 2006. There was the Overkill port to consoles in 2009 and the odd House Of The Dead EX arcade release that stuck to Japan; there was also the recent Darts of the Dead game that was available on Sega’s Darts Live boards just for Oct. 2017. I’m guessing the latter really was a hint of things to come.
After a 12 year wait, Sega’s signature zombie franchise is rising from it’s grave with the location test announcement for House Of The Dead Scarlet Dawn. The game begins testing in Akihabara, Japan this Friday, where the test will run through next Sunday. The company has launched a special website to promote the location test, which also includes some screenshots of the game. At the moment, this appears to be a title that is exclusive to arcades.
But that’s not all of course – we’ve got a shot of the game cabinet to analyze. Here you go:
While the news is all about the game testing in Japan at the moment, I am 100% confident that this is also destined for Western shores. The cabinet uses the familiar ‘theater’ style cabinet that has been all the rage with arcade shooters in recent years, including Sega’s Transformers Human Alliance. It is hard to tell at the moment if the zombie image in the back of the cabinet is a stand-in like is found with The Walking Dead Arcade game or if they are using a pseudo-holographic effect instead. It does use a sensor to know when someone is passing by the cabinet to generate the effect though – changing from white to red and showing the zombie face.Games ‘sensing’ players for such things is a neat idea.
It’s not mentioned how the guns are setup but it is unusual for cabinets of this style to use free guns that are only connected with a cable. Sega’s Operation GHOST Target Bravo does that but it’s the only one to do so. I will assume that this will use mounted guns for now – perhaps they are designed in the vein of the old Line Of Fire guns?
Taking a page from Dark Escape 4D, this cabinet will also provide some special effects for players, designed to heighten their fear. This includes at the moment a vibrating seat and air blasters. Of course these things are always subject to change but Sega does seem to be focused on creating more of a unique arcade experience with this entry than before.
This cabinet is also more ‘visceral’ than competing horror shooters although keep in mind that Sega could change the design for the final release; you also tend to find cabinet differences between Japanese, American and European releases.
We can also analyze the screenshots. This uses Unreal Engine 4 and promises to throw more zombies at players than any other entry in the series has done so far. You can get a sense of that with this scene where the zombies are crawling on top of each other to reach you; it’s also worth noting that this appears to take place in a house/mansion again (which HOTD4 didn’t have unless you want to call a big office building a house 😛 )
Things also get crowded in close corners. Judging by the bullets, I’m guessing that you will have a machine gun at your disposal again; we also see the return of familiar faces such as the dual axe wielding zombie:
You had also better think fast at certain moments:
Which may involve rescuing your partner from becoming zombie chow:
Some of the new zombies are snazzy dressers! (while there do appear to be various reused models, that is one of those things that could change for the final software)
Vehicular action is always a welcome part of the series:
Oh joy, the worms with teeth are back
Quite the fearsome looking boss. I imagine that you’ll be seeing this one at cosplay conventions in 2019.
This will very likely be available at the JAEPO expo next month but no idea when it will be released at this point. Could be ready soon or it could be Sega’s big game that they will have at IAAPA 2018. Based on this info so far, what are your thoughts about Scarlet Dawn?