Slitterhead is a new horror game from one of the architects of the genre. Announced in 2021, Slitterhead is being developed by Bokeh Game Studio – which is headed up by Keiichiro Toyama, the creator of Silent Hill and Forbidden Siren. Slitterhead looks like an early candidate for one of the best horror games of the year, and its creepy atmosphere definitely has something to do with legendary Team Silent composer Akira Yamaoka joining the game’s production.
Slitterhead is well worth watching, as it could prove to be a breakout indie hit. We’re hoping we see more of it at E3 2022, and the best bet would be during the Summer Game Fest Showcase on the E3 2022 schedule. In the meantime, keep reading for everything we know about Slitterhead.
Slitterhead release date
While there’s nothing concrete regarding a Slitterhead release date for now, Bokeh Game Studio head Keiichiro Toyama said the developer’s first project would release in 2023 for PC in an interview held prior to Slitterhead’s reveal. Within that interview, Bokeh says it’s keen to bring Slitterhead to “as many console platforms as possible”, so Xbox Series X and PS5 versions of the game at the very least seem likely.
The Slitterhead trailer that aired at the Game Awards teases a little of what we can expect from Bokeh Game Studio’s first project, and leads with Keiichiro Toyama’s horror credentials. A caption reads: “In 1999, Keiichiro Toyama chose horror as the genre for his first directorial work. Silent Hill was released to the world. In 2020, he went independent and founded Bokeh Game Studio. And he came back to face a new challenge in horror.”
With that, this new challenge in horror depicts grotesque, shapeshifting monsters, the dismemberment of bewildered civilians and police officers alike, and a ninja-aping, motorcycle helmet-wearing, sword-wielding chap who goes to town on the ethereal beings, who may or may not be the game’s protagonist.
Slitterhead story and gameplay
Again, with such a short burst of cinematic footage, it’s hard to say exactly what shape Slitterhead will take in gameplay terms come final release. The Silent Hill and Siren series have both historically adopted third-person perspectives, however, horror heavyweight Resident Evil has recently pivoted to first-person fare in Resident Evil 7 and Resident Evil Village. Ghostwire: Tokyo, the upcoming action-horror game from The Evil Within creators Tango Gameworks, has likewise moved from third to first-person view, therefore it’ll be interesting to see which path Slitterhead goes down.
In the Slitterhead trailer itself, we see a man seemingly caught off guard by a woman overcome by parasites, and are later shown police scrambling around the streets reacting to a pretty gruesome active crime scene. All of which suggests things turn to shit pretty quickly in-game. The Slitterhead trailer ends with an older woman standing on a veranda who’s clearly been infected by the parasites we’ve seen earlier. In a flash, her creature-like head – scales, tentacle tongue and all – retracts, folding neatly back into place, to reform her otherwise normal human face. Which may mean shapeshifters play a part in Slitterhead too.
#野狗子 #Yakushi #Slitterhead pic.twitter.com/jVsHV4r0f0December 10, 2021
Keiichiro Toyama is the head of Bokeh Game Studio and the creative director of Slitterhead. Besides creating Silent Hill in the late 1990s, he is also responsible for the Forbidden Siren series of horror games – the last of which, Siren: Blood Curse, landed in 2008 – having spent the last several years working on the Sony-exclusive action-adventure series Gravity Rush. In 2020, the veteran developer established Bokeh Game Studio, with Slitterhead marking its first project. Team Silent composer Akira Yamaoka is also scoring the project and thinks that you’ll like the finished product.
Want to see what else is on the horizon for 2022 and beyond? Check out our list of new games for 2022 and beyond.