Recently, we were given a code by Gun Interactive to check out the newest member of the family, Nancy. With the ability to see through the perspective of Victims, Nancy is able to help the family get more info as to where Victims might be hiding. But is she enough to paint a future for The Texas Chainsaw Massacre?
Dwindling in Real Time
The short answer is “no”. It is no secret that Texas Chainsaw’s player base has been dwindling after the game’s first week on the market. Just within the last month, the game has been floating between 600 and 700 players on Steam, and the number has been steadily decreasing if SteamDB is anything to go off of.
There are many reasons why players have dipped. The map design is still atrocious with the basement having a labyrinthian layout and paths to exits being so convoluted it makes navigating a pain for everyone. Then, there’s the basement exit, which many Victim players have used to speedrun matches (for some reason). But worst of all, the bully squads have taken over. It isn’t uncommon to match up with a team of Victims who have perks maxed out and optimized to the point where no Family player stands a chance in a brawl. Needless to say, it’s a bigger mess in the asymm scene than Video Horror Society was back in 2022.
Can the Texas Chainsaw Nancy DLC Save the Day?
But what about the DLC? Does Nancy and the new map, Nancy’s House, give a good excuse to come back to the game? That answer is also a “no”. We’ll admit that her power is an interesting mechanic. Though you will be able to see the perspective of one of the Victims, it’ll be through a gross and noisy filter. It’s a good way to give Nancy and her Family hints as to where a Victim could be hiding. However, Family players will only get value out of the ability if everyone is on comms. Otherwise, only the Nancy player will know the information.
The only time I felt the ability really came through for me was when me, a Cook, and a Johnny were hunting down the last Victim. With Nancy’s ability, I saw the Victim was hiding in a cooler right in front of us. I pulled the Victim out, and we went nuts. It was super satisfying, but that kind of moment never came again in the handful of hours I spent playing Nancy exclusively.
Nancy does have another ability in the form of barb wire traps. She can set these up in doorways and crawl spaces or even remove or reset them to deter Victims from an easy escape. Should a Victim get tangled in these traps, they will begin to lose health and create noise, making them easier to find until they remove the wire.
Two problems with this ability. One is that if placed in a doorway, Family members can often break these traps meaning you have to spend even more time holding a button to repair them. Second, Nancy can only place three of these traps with no way to make more. With maps being as big and convoluted as they are, you don’t get a ton of map control and have to hope for a coincidence. Their only best use is for some of the crawl spaces in the house, and that’s about it.
The worst part about all this is the price point. Purchasing Nancy means you have to fork over ten bucks, and this is where other asymm games come in to eat Texas Chainsaw’s lunch, specifically Dead By Daylight.
Too Little Too Late…
Dead By Daylight has been going strong since 2016 and has added in a plethora of new Killers and Survivors, many of which are licensed. Leatherface himself is even in Dead By Daylight alongside Michael Myers, Freddy Krueger, the Xenomorphs, and Ghostface. Heck, the game got a brand new Killer when Texas Chainsaw implemented Nancy. You can get Chucky for five bucks! So, when I look at what Dead By Daylight is offering and compare that to Texas Chainsaw’s DLC characters…who do you think I’m going go with: the killer doll from an acclaimed horror franchise, or the crazed cafeteria lady who costs double the doll?
In all honesty, I think Texas Chainsaw may not last long. This first wave of post-launch support has been primarily cosmetics, and with Nancy and the new Victim, Danny, costing 20 dollars altogether ($9.99 USD each), I don’t see why anyone would stay. Dead By Daylight is adding in new characters every quarter of the year, characters with unique mechanics and perks that change the way you play other Killers. And it all comes at a reasonable price. Couple the absurd prices with the lack of additional maps or balance adjustments we’ve seen in the past six months since launch, and I don’t understand why anyone would stay.
Let me put it to you this way; suppose you placed two sundaes in front of me, one banana split and one hot fudge. The hot fudge wins every time. Why? It’s because of the layers between flavor, texture, the dance of hot and cold temperatures creating a new blend, and all at a modest price regardless of who made it. Banana splits are overpriced with nothing but sugar, and you walk away feeling bad, like you could have gone through life without it.
Go for the hot fudge sundae.
Note – A code was provided for the purpose of this post.