A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Doorways has no positive message unless you stretch to say it's good that the player's job is to stop a known killer. From start to finish, it's dark and disturbing, the direct opposite of optimistic.
Positive Role Models
Aside from the player character (a man belonging to an organization that apprehends psychotic killers), there isn't much in the way of positive role models. Everyone else in the game is a victim, a maniac, or a monster.
Ease of Play
No tutorial; just a list of key/button assignments within the Options menu. But there's not a lot to it. You move using the usual WASD keys and use the mouse to look around. At times, the first-person viewpoint makes jumping puzzles annoying and chase sequences nausea-inducing.
Violence & Scariness
Violence is more implied than seen. Some suggestion of disturbing human experiments via flashback, such as mutated amputees with mechanical devices implanted into their bodies with frightening scars. Monsters are seen so quickly that their deformities aren't long on display. The main violence occurs when players allow monsters to catch up to them, but even then, you get hit once, and then you see a black screen.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Some hint of drugs being used in a hospital setting.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Doorways is a downloadable survival horror game that focuses on entering the twisted, sadistic mind of a psychotic killer. Though it doesn't have much in the way of gore or overt demonstrations of violence, there are flashbacks to medical experiments (including hints of drug use and abuse), and players end up face to face with the horrific, mutated results of those experiments. Failing to get away from these monsters could mean death, but these moments of violence are brief. The majority of the game is spent creeping through murky hallways or abandoned mine shafts looking for clues or methods of escape. The game consists of three chapters that end on a cliffhanger. Players wanting to find out what ultimately happens will have to wait until developer Saibot Studios finishes the game's subsequent chapters.
Is It Any Good?
Doorways wants desperately to be like Frictional Games' Amnesia: The Dark Descent, but it never comes close. The graphics might be nice, but who can tell? The lighting's so dim you really can't see much of anything (even if you crank the gamma up on your PC monitor). After starting with a goofy story idea, the writing makes things worse by seesawing back and forth between impressive and awkward; in some cases, the dialogue seems like poor English translation. Worse, long sections of uneventful exploration are only broken up by scares that are so evenly placed you can see them coming a mile away.
The result is one long slog through dark, similarly maze-like environments, an experience that's less frightening and more of a chore. The sound design makes a valiant attempt at adding some tension, and the monsters are adequately creepy, but ultimately, Doorways: Chapters 1-3 is more tedious than terrifying.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.