Uncanny Valley Review

Everyone has secrets. Uncanny Valley is an indie game that explores the dark side of artificial intelligence. Uncanny Valley is named after the same phenomenon where an A.I. develops humanoid characteristics and causes a sense of revulsion to the person viewing it. The game creates a sense of dread, fear, horror, and disgust all doing it in old-school pixels. With several different endings and distinct characters make this worth playing.

Uncanny Valley Review

Uncanny Valley Review

Title: Uncanny Valley
Platforms: Steam, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita [Reviewed]
Genre: Action Adventure, Indie, Horror
Developer: Cowardly Creations
Publisher: Cowardly Creations
Players: 1
Release Date: Steam: April 23, 2015, PS4 & PS Vita: February 7, 2017

A Dream Within a Horrific Reality

Uncanny Valley Review

The story takes place with Tom, the protagonist, running away from a group of shadow people. He wakes up in the subway on his way to his new job as a night shift security guard. The facility he works at though is completely empty except for two people: Eve, the mysterious woman who is the housekeeper of the grounds, and Buck, who is the head security guard of the facility. The game does an incredible job of introducing these two people without them putting much involvement in the story.

Uncanny Valley heavily focuses on actions you do as well as choices you make. After being introduced to Eve, players can meet with her again on the next night Tom works. If Tom goes, the player has achieved a bond with Eve. If he doesn’t, then Eve becomes displeased with Tom. This could end in one of two endings. But the fact that the game does a simple introduction of Eve is what really pops out. Players only get to find out more by the tapes they collect, and that’s if they connect the dots.

Uncanny Valley Review

Another aspect of the game is Tom’s dreams. At first glance, the dreams seem like nightmares, which can be confusing. But if you pay more attention to the details, the nightmares are actually events that really happened. The dreams are used to explain Tom’s past. Thus, the game creates choices within the dream while also using symbolism.

Timely Organized Gameplay

Uncanny Valley Review

Gameplay in Uncanny Valley is timed. Players have about six minutes to complete a shift. Within that timeframe, players must read emails, collect items, complete duties, and find a way to the lower levels of the facility. Sounds like a lot to do right? That’s why the developer encourages multiple playthroughs. Players have to organize themselves and focus on one line of the story at a time. I wound up playing through over six times, and always found something new.

The ability to use a gun is part of a storyline. In fact, you’ll find different items on separate playthroughs. And even find reasons for those items as well. I acquired a fire extinguisher in my second playthrough, but I didn’t know what exactly do with it. It wasn’t until my third playthrough that I found out the use of the fire extinguisher. Thus granting me a different ending. There’s even an arcade game that if players beat all ten levels of it, also gives you an ending.

Old-School Pixel Graphics

Uncanny Valley Review

Uncanny Valley is a retro jewel. It doesn’t need high-end cinematics for players to enjoy or make it scary. The musical score is amazing. Every time I entered an area, I was spooked and not ready for anything. The game does a great job of keeping you on edge. The whole atmosphere of it is dark and dreading. The lighting is limited, which forces you to use the flashlight for security purposes. Adding even more to the atmosphere.

The game also doesn’t slow down with the macabre scenes. At one point, you are in a slaughterhouse type room. The gore there, despite it being pixelated, is pretty graphic. It really gives off the true meaning of Uncanny Valley.


+ a Complicated story that unravels once you find more information.

+ Graphics are simple but does justice to the game.

+ Forces the player to play multiple times.


– Timed gameplay that has many aspects to explore. Really taking away freedom.

– Buttons tend to feel a little off, aren’t always responsive.

– The generator mini-game felt weird, sometimes taking forever.

Final Rating

Overall Score: 8.5 Out of 10 Uncanny Valley is well worth your time. Especially at its price point. I recommend this game to anyone that loves the horror genre. The game is a bit crazy at first, but gets better as you go along. With the story being much appreciable with multiple playthroughs. I found very few flaws, and was impressed in every way possible with it. Proving a story can have simple characters, but also have depth in the writing. Making players think about what’s happening. The retro graphics also add to the entire experience as well.

For the sake of transparency, the publisher (Cowardly Creations) provided a digital code for review purposes.

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