A terrifying new trailer for ABE VR – Hammerhead VR’s upcoming immersive horror experience – was released online this Wednesday.
The video features a truly twisted cinematic during which it is clear that the sweetly speaking robotic helper known as ABE is malfunctioning. He’s malfunctioning very, very badly.
ABE VR is a gamified version of director Rob McLellan’s award winning short film, simply titled ABE. You can watch the entire thing below:
Hammerhead VR’s official description of their creation is chilling to say the least:
“Created in Unreal Engine, and continuing our filmmaking in virtual reality, ABE is a virtual recreation of the original story about a misguided robot seeking the unconditional love of humans… at whatever cost.
With remarkably intense results, the film explores the emotional connection and heightened sense of empathy that VR delivers as a storytelling medium – introducing new techniques to enhance the feeling of presence, such as the eye tracking between ABE and us as a character, and the sense of physical restriction the user experiences.
…No longer do you have to just watch the film, you now get to experience it as a character. Specifically, ABE’s chosen victim.”
What makes this concept truly terrifying is the sense of dread it is able to build. Alfred Hitchcock famously said, “There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it.”
Both ABE, and ABE VR, seem to have taken this sentiment to heart.
Watching an accented robot wax eloquently in sophisticated prose about the nature of life while a terrified victim struggles next to gleamingly sharp torture instruments certainly creates a sense of horrified anticipation.
In the film, all of the actual violence takes place off screen so it will be interesting to see how the studio plans to create, and maintain, that sense of fear within VR. You’ll obviously remember that this sociopathic automaton cannot actually harm you, but I’d be willing to bet that this fact will become more and more difficult to remember once you come face to face with ABE.
No official launch date is set as of yet. ABE VR will release on both Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.