There are many mysteries that have yet to be solved. Why do whales get washed ashore sometimes? Why does the Microsoft Windows Store exist? Why does WinRAR have an expiry date if it's always free to use? And why are some developers so eager to ruin their reputation, releasing their low-budget games in almost the same time as some loud hit in the same genre?
The polish survival horror game known as Husk came out shortly after Resident Evil VII, which was very ambitious of the developers. The coders from UndeadScout were helped by the more reputable IMGN.PRO studio, who, by the way, are also from Poland and made their own
game of the same genre - Kholat, and it was actually mostly good, unlike many aspects of Husk.
The publishers promised that we would occasionally have to shoot at monsters, collect ammunition and first-aid kits. So certain comparisons with Resident Evil 7 were inevitable, although in fact naive, given the difference in budgets. But for that the developers only have themselves to blame, because their creation was released just at the time when the game about the story of the Baker family came out. Furthermore, the starting pricepoint of 19.99$ certainly didn't help.
The game, set in Shivercliff, has the player roam around forests and buildings similarly to Silent Hill, which was actually the game that inspired the developers to make Husk. However, their release is more of a parody than anything. The studio couldn't even iron out the most basic and fundamental aspects that make a game at the very least mediocre; you sometimes fall through floors and walk through textures, monsters appearing out of nowhere, unnecessarily long corridors, the dialogue and the narrator seem to be more confused than you are. Most puzzles will feature you finding a button to click, and that's it. There are no original concepts to be found here. The subtitles also have many spelling errors and missing letters, the graphics aren't great either. The atmosphere is done very well - with you always frightened to see the game freeze and crash.
The only thing rivaling all the problems mentioned above is the performance and optimization. The game will go from 70 to 15 fps while staring at a wall, even with V-Synchronization turned on. The combat is also bugged out and monotonous.
On the other hand, Husk has done some things right. Some parts are actually scary, with the monsters suddenly jumping out in front of the door you just opened, or chasing you down. The story also isn't half that bad, it's just that the gameplay elements are unfinished and not properly tested before or even after the launch.
The result of all the thins mentioned above is.. weird. In the world of Husk, you definitely are always scared - you are startled by frightening sounds and jumping monsters, or you are afraid that you will lose progress because you fall under textures or will have to reboot because of a bug. In this sense, the Poles did well - that's really what horror is. But this is hardly what both they and we wanted...
The game is 80% off, going from 19.99$ to 3.99$. However, I wouldn't dare to say it is worth even a sliver of the discounted price.
Verdict: hard to recommend. The millions of technical and mechanical issues make me wonder how “finished” the release was and still is, Husk is "another example of a studio that have mistaken basic nostalgia for the wealth of enjoyment", as stated by Hardcore Gamer.
If only they took their time to fix all the problems, it could have been a great title. But, as we know, they didn't.