Haunted House

Posted:  Oct 21, 2023
SDHQ BUILD SCORE: 
Full StarFull StarFull StarFull StarNo Star
Cloud Saves

Review

Haunted House was provided by ATARI for review. Thank you!

ATARI has been hard at work bringing back their old games with a full revamp from their original releases. Quantum Recharged, Mr. Run and Jump, and Missle Command Recharged are just some examples of how they are bringing their classic games back to life with new styles. Haunted House, based on the 1982 release of the same name, is the next game in this rejuvenation aesthetic with brand-new gameplay elements, and this one is definitely a keeper.

Haunted House will see you as Lyn Graves, the niece of a renowned treasure hunter, and will have to sneak past ghosts and ghouls to rescue her friends. Like the original, you will investigate the house and try to be as sneaky as possible, completing challenges in each room to progress to the next one. But to add to it, we now have roguelike elements, like procedurally generated rooms, unlockable characters with different stats, and unique enemy placement, to keep things fresh, and it does a great job of that.

HauntedHouse1

I love the gameplay loop. The roguelike elements keep the game feeling fresh while sticking true to its inspiration. The emphasis on sneaking around while trying to complete challenges is awesome. I also like the different items to get around the enemies, which can change your strategy to complete the rooms altogether. All these elements mesh well with each other and are accented with the game's gorgeous visuals. It can feel a little on the hard side due to the roguelike elements, which will send you all the way back to the beginning if you die, but this doesn't harm the overall experience.

And without many changes, Haunted House is very playable on the Steam Deck!

Haunted House - Steam Deck Performance

For the most part, Haunted House runs quite well on the Steam Deck. In most rooms, I was able to get around 9W - 10W battery drain and a solid 60 FPS, but its when the rooms get a little bigger that we start to see some trouble. To keep things stable with a lower battery drain and still feeling smooth, I set the refresh rate/framerate cap to 50. This brought the average drain to 8W - 10W and only jumped to 11W in the bigger rooms.

The game also starts out in 1920x1080 resolution, which stretches to fit the whole screen of the Deck. The big problem is it cuts off some of the game, too, so I would recommend switching the resolution to 1280x720.

Accessibility

There aren't many options for Haunted House in general, let alone some for accessibility. You can change the language and toggle vibration, change audio sliders, and tweak controls.

The game doesn't support 16:10 resolutions, so there will be black bars unless you are stretching the screen with 1920x1080 resolution or using SteamOS 3.5. There is full controller and cloud save support, though!

Some text in-game is a bit on the small side, too. While most UI elements and conversations are readable, the text when picking up items and text of people talking with a speech bubble above their heads is hard to read. The former is almost unreadable, but the icons make it more obvious what it can do.

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Conclusion

I didn't expect to enjoy Haunted House as much as I did, but I am so glad I got to play. The game is a fantastic blend of roguelike and stealth, while the visuals make the world pop. All of it works together well and keeps me wanting to come back for more. On the Steam Deck, it performs admirably for the most part, but with a 50hz/fps cap and a TDP limit of 6, the game is near flawless in performance. Overall, this is a game you shouldn't sleep on if you are looking for a slower-paced roguelike!

Our review is based on the PC version of this game.

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SDHQ's Build Score Breakdown

Haunted House is a fantastic re-imagining of the 1982 classic from ATARI, and with some tweaks, it runs great on the Steam Deck.

Build Score

Performance: 
Full StarFull StarFull StarFull StarFull Star
VISUALS: 
Full StarFull StarFull StarFull StarFull Star
Stability: 
Full StarFull StarFull StarFull StarNo Star
Controls: 
Full StarFull StarFull StarFull StarFull Star
Battery: 
Full StarFull StarFull StarFull StarNo Star
Noah Kupetsky
A lover of gaming since 4, Noah has grown up with a love and passion for the industry. From there, he started to travel a lot and develop a joy for handheld and PC gaming. When the Steam Deck released, it just all clicked.
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Community Rating

Let us know what level of playability you consider Haunted House to be. Help our community determine the viability of playing this game on Steam Deck!
Steam Deck Compatibility
Current Price: 
$13.99
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