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Dreadhalls Review

DreadHalls Review – Is it Scary?

Does the classic VR horror game still stand up?

Let’s get started on this DreadHalls Review.

What is DreadHalls?

DreadHalls is a survival horror VR game experience. You are trapped in a massive dungeon. You need to explore it, survive, and find a way to escape. There will be monsters and evil creatures everywhere.

Dreadhalls first came out in 2016, is it still scary?

White Door Games Logo

Who Makes DreadHalls?

Dreadhalls is created by White Door Games. This is a one-man development studio based in Madrid Spain. He has produced 2 VR experiences and Dreadhalls was the first one.

Which VR Headsets is Dreadhalls On?

Dreadhalls is available on Steam VR, Oculus Rift, and Oculus Quest 2 (and even on Oculus Go).

Steam Logo 1 - DreadHalls Review - Is it Scary? Oculus rift 2 - DreadHalls Review - Is it Scary? MetaQuestLogo - DreadHalls Review - Is it Scary?

Dreadhalls Review Gameplay

I play a lot of horror games. I like the thrill of a good jump scare and I like even more a good psychological element to the horror. Mix in some supernatural and I’m gold. Dreadhalls has all of these elements.

You start the game trapped in a mysterious dungeon. You have a lamp in one hand that constantly needs to be fed oil to stay lit. The oil will go down quickly and it is a constant stress in the back of your mind.

You have NO weapons. You will also find coins, some lock picks, and some letters.

dreadhalls review is it scary com.oculus.vrsh 5 - DreadHalls Review - Is it Scary?These coins can be given to the strange Medusa-like heads on the walls that allow you to ask them one question and get one cryptic answer. As there is no other use for the coins you may as well ask your questions.

When you approach a locked door or chest you turn rapidly your controller back and forth to unlock it. Depending on the color of the lock, it will take more time to unlock it. This requires a few turns that take precious time. You can also use one of the locks picks you find for this purpose. I found I didn’t want to open the menu and bother with the lockpicks too often.

The letters tell of some other unfortunate visitor to this dungeon before you. It gives you a little bit of spooky backstory and they are worth the read.

And that is really it. That is the entire mechanics of the game. Find these items, keep your lamp lit, explore and escape.

You also can pull up a map that shows where you are, where you have been, and where you still need to go.  As you continue to explore you will find there are also various horrible creatures, ghosts, and monsters in these dungeons. Because of course, there are.

Dreadhalls creates random procedural generated levels. This means no two times are the same. It also means you might get a very easy level with not much going on, or you might get a ridiculous scary one with many creatures.

The game automatically saves when you reach the main entrance hall. When you quit or die you will start back at this point.

Dreadhalls Graphics

The graphics in this game are not AAA level. In fact, they are pretty basic and even comically bad at times. This does not matter in the slightest. The way that White Door Games created the environment with the constant decreasing lamp, the spooky noises off in the distance, objects that appear just outside the reach of your lamplight, and the empty room that when you turn is now full of evil monsters is BEYOND terrifying.

Is Dreadhalls Scary?

I saw many people say in reviews that they could not play this game very long. I thought that was pretty funny and not believable. Then I played it. How scary is Dreadhalls? Dreadhalls IS scary.

Once you get past the basic tutorial and first level, things will really step up. I can play for a while but after being startled every couple of minutes and then dying. Yeah. I want to take a break too. It GETS to you.

These jump scares are pretty constant. They do not feel cheap though. Even though you KNOW there is going to likely be something just around the corner, you mentally get prepared for it, but you can’t help but be scared when you see a creature appear there. Again these creatures are not ridiculously accurate or gory graphics, basically simple sprites even, but holy did I scream playing this game. You really can’t help it.

The developers of this game did a great job of using where you are looking in your headset to turn off or trigger events happening. It also mixes things up so you don’t know what to expect.

A good example you can see in the graphics below. As you approach this room I jumped to see a hand, but then realized it was a statue. No biggy. Keep walking into the room to open the door. As I turn around before entering the door, the statue has moved forward, music plays, and you bet I jumped.

Because the map is randomly generated you never really know if you are getting an easy level or a scary one. I took the time to play through many times. It really does vary the number of jump scares or moments that will happen on each level.

Some might be quite easy with not too much going on, or things you have seen before and know how to deal with. But the next level, oof! Each time I thought the game had nothing left to startle me with. Boom another random scare of some kind. You never really know just what is out of your lamplight and that plays in your mind.

TForTeen - DreadHalls Review - Is it Scary?

Who Will Enjoy Playing Dreadhalls?

Dreadhalls is not rated but I imagine it would be T for Teen. There are fantasy themes as well as mild blood and violence. Anyone who is looking to be scared and get their heart pumping will enjoy Dreadhalls. It is also a fun game to watch someone else play in a group.

What Games are similar to Dreadhalls?

Dreadhalls is a survival horror dungeon with spooky moments and jump scares. It is similar to The Exorcist Legion VR, Resident Evil 4, and Wraith: The Oblivion Afterlife.

How long is Dreadhalls?

Each time you play Dreadhalls a dungeon is randomly created. Depending on how quickly you move through the different areas will depend upon your playtime of the game. On average most people can complete the game in about 5 hours. The next time you play it will be a whole new experience.

Can you play Dreadhalls Sitting Down?

Yes! Dreadhalls can be played sitting down. There is an option on Steam VR to launch in this mode if you prefer. You can also play it standing. You do not need a large play space or room movement.

SittingVR - DreadHalls Review - Is it Scary?StandingVR - DreadHalls Review - Is it Scary?

Does Dreadhallse cause motion sickness?

MayCauseMotionSickness e1619998884307 - DreadHalls Review - Is it Scary?Dreadhalls was originally created in 2016. That is part of the reason for the not-so-great graphics. The other unfortunate side effect of these graphics is that moving around in this dungeon can cause a fair amount of motion sickness feelings. I rarely feel motion sickness these days, but the first time I played this I felt some of those feelings again. The next few times I played I did not. Your mileage may vary.

There is no teleportation option because running and being caught is part of the spooky experience. I felt the movement speed was pretty good, fast even, and perhaps this is also part of the reason for the motion sick feelings. Many VR games today make you move at a snail’s pace, Dreadhalls does not.

Dreadhalls may cause motion sickness issues. Remember to take breaks. 

Final Thoughts On Dreadhalls Review

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