Claustrophobia – Review
Follow Genre: Horror, action
Developer: Sentinel Studios
Publisher: Sentinel Studios
Platform: PC
Tested on: PC

Claustrophobia – Review

Site Score
Good: Nice dark atmosphere, creepy ambient sounds
Bad: Automatic save points are really annoying, repetitive visuals and sounds, puzzles are boring
User Score
(1 votes)
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VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 2.0/10 (1 vote cast)

Claustrophobia will have you wandering through dark and deserted creepy hallways of a mysterious research complex where things have gone horribly wrong. It’s a fine premise for a horror game, but unfortunately, this journey will not provide you with many clues as to what has actually happened here, and the gameplay as it currently is leaves much to be desired. Claustrophobia is developed and published by Sentinel Studios.


The game doesn’t really start with an introduction. You start the game in a small dark room which turns out to be an elevator you rode to get into a mysterious complex. After you’ve turned on your flashlight to take a look around, you’ll hear a voice over the intercom or walkie-talkie, which tells you that you should head out to explore the facility you’re in. There’s no mention of where you are, how you got there, and what has happened. You’ll notice on screen that there are research notes to collect, but these aren’t mentioned as you start the game.

During exploration, you’ll be able to find some notes you can read which tell you a bit about horrific experiments gone wrong in this facility, and as you enter some rooms you’ll hear the voice over the intercom again giving instructions or telling you a bit more about the situation you’re in. However, the voice doesn’t reveal much about a bigger story and mainly reacts to things you just did, so you’ll still be in the dark about the mission and motivation of the character you’re playing.

Storytelling is done mainly through the environment and through objects you can inspect. This works well to add a sense of mystery, but it would have been nice if the game had a proper introduction and if a bit more underlying story was revealed as you explore. The current way of presenting the story is not engaging for any potential players.


The graphics are very dark and atmospheric, which fits the mood of the game. You really need to make use of your flashlight to explore. However, the hallways and caves you’ll find yourself in are very repetitive and it can be difficult to find your way around until you’ve walked back and forth a few times to get a feel of direction. You’ll wander around for quite some time in the same kind of environment, and eventually, you’ll get a bit tired of seeing the same hallways over and over again. The design of the monsters and a lot of objects is a bit bland. The designs could haved looked much more scary, varied, and detailed.


The sound design is okay, but not great. There’s no music, but there are continuous ambient sounds that evoke an eerie feel. As you start out, you’ll hear creepy growling noises all around you, sounding very intimidating. But as you progress, you’ll just get used to these sounds. Scary sounds are not a clear indicator that there’s a monster nearby; sometimes there is a monster, but it might be on the other side of the wall in a different room. Many sound effects are repeated in the same way very often, making it obvious that the sound effects implemented in the game are very limited.

The voice which is occasionally commenting as you explore is nice, as it’ll make you feel less like you’re just wandering around randomly, and more like you’re on some kind of mission.


Claustrophobia is a horror game in which you’ll explore a creepy facility and try to survive the monsters you’ll encounter. You’ll make your way through deserted hallways, collect research, and find out ways to continue exploring when your path is blocked. The offset is quite simple, which is not always a bad thing.

This game doesn’t involve much combat with the monsters; usually, your best bet is trying to avoid them. You start out without any weapons, running and hiding from monsters as you spot them, or trying to lead them away from the path you need to take. You will be able to kill smaller monsters with the weapons you’ll eventually get, but whenever you encounter a monster it’ll generally kill you a few times before you’ll manage to figure out how to kill or avoid it. The monsters can be quite frustrating; the AI is super bizarre, with monsters not being able to spot you when you’re not right in front of them, and sometimes spotting you through walls. It’s possible to lead monsters into a corner and just escape from them that way, but it’ll involve lots of trial-and-error.

This game makes use of save points; every now and then the game gets saved automatically, and if you die you’ll reset back to the point of your last save. However, it’s not clear where exactly these save points are, and they seem to be very far apart. There are areas that are pretty hard to survive, and if you need to go through it over and over every time you die, it’ll quickly get annoying.

As you explore, you’ll frequently encounter locked doors or blocked paths. To progress, you’ll need to figure out how to solve certain puzzles or how to circumvent these obstacles. These puzzles usually involve walking back and forth a few times to pick up some items or to interact with something. Some puzzles require you to fix something quickly while a monster is chasing you. These puzzles are especially frustrating since you’ll generally die over and over again before figuring out what needs to be done to escape.

As you start the game, you’ll notice on the screen you’ll be able to collect research, which is mentioned after exploring for a while by the voice accompanying you. Sadly, there isn’t much context about what this research would encompass. You’ll collect research from interacting with objects, however, these objects don’t really seem to be logical or obvious. You’ll find some notes explaining the story every now and then, but somehow these don’t count as collected research.


Claustrophobia could have been a really nice horror game. It has a great spooky and dark atmosphere, and the basic premise works fine for a game like this. However, the game would really benefit from having a solid story and improved gameplay. The fact that you’ll need to replay large parts of the game after you die is very annoying. The monster’s AI is kind of ridiculous. The puzzles often feel clunky and aren’t really challenging, just busywork. The game could really use more varied environments to explore, and monsters with various looks. In its current state, the game isn’t great, but if the developers will significantly improve upon it, it could become a nice horror title.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 2.0/10 (1 vote cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Claustrophobia - Review, 2.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

I'm a LARP writer, freelance teacher and everlasting PhD student, and an avid gamer. Nowadays I game mostly on PC, but I love my retro playstation 1 & 2 as well :) I like watching anime, movies and series, and read books & comics whenever I have time!

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