Perhaps the third time’s the charm: The Blair Witch franchise has never been able to repeat the success of 1999’s The Blair Witch Project — a no-budget fake documentary horror film that made Star Wars money 20 years back. But it hasn’t been for want of trying. The latest stab: a Blair Witch video game, which was announced at this weekend’s E3.
The game will be a first-person survival-horror, and it appears to be set before the events of the original movie, in which a documentary crew went into the Maryland woods to explore the titular menace and discovered it was, unfortunately, real. As per the game’s press release:
It’s 1996. A young boy disappears in the Black Hills Forest near Burkittsville, Maryland. As Ellis, a former police officer with a troubled past, you join the search. What starts as an ordinary investigation soon turns into an endless nightmare as you confront your fears and the Blair Witch, a mysterious force that haunts the woods.
No word on whether the game will involve you having to wield a wobbly mid-’90s camcorder, but hopefully the graphics are a bit better than they were in the initial movie.
A Blair Witch video game makes sense — perhaps moreso than the non-mockumentary sequel, Blair Witch: Book of Shadows, which was released a year after the first one, or even the 2015 reboot, called simply Blair Witch. Both of those films tanked at the box office, effectively killing a horror franchise that could, like most of its kind, spawn endless sequels and revivals.
The game will be available for XBOX One and PCs on August 30.