The Rabbit Hole
I’m not well versed in the lore of Alice in Wonderland. I’ve seen a couple of movies involving the subject material, and I have probably read the book at some point in my life. But at best, I’d say I’m familiar with it. So forgive me for asking, but I just want to make sure: is Alice in Wonderland supposed to make me me shit my pants?
I haven’t shit my pants since middle school, which is still wildly inappropriate, but that’s ironically probably the last time I cracked open “Alice in Wonderland,” too. Now correlation might not be causation, so let me explain myself and regain some credibility as an adult.
“The Rabbit Hole” is an escape room style game. It’s full of thematic elements from “Alice in Wonderland” that is interesting to notice but not necessarily required to progress in escaping the room. In this singular room, there are a handful of puzzles that must be solved in order for the player (I guess it’s Alice; its not really fleshed out) to escape the room.
Now that’s a good setup for a game, and that’s kind of what I was looking forward to getting into. But a couple things got in my way. The controls are a bit clunky at first. My recommendation is to keep the comfort settings on, as the smooth “gliding” motion is pretty terribly utilized. Teleporting from point to point in the room is probably the best method of getting around, as otherwise I’d find myself gliding into a table or a corner with no real way of escaping the collision detection preventing me from moving. That’s not the kind of escaping I wanted to do.
Another issue I ran into is a puzzle that easily lets you paint yourself into a corner, so to speak. Two items have limited use, when there’s really no reason for it, as this simply isn’t the type of game that calls for inventory management. However, the need to annoyingly, and cumbersomely restart led me into a false sense of security that would be my downfall.
Periodically during my first attempt, there would be a loud rumbling and/or a growl of which I can only assume is the presence of the rabbit descending on my hole. On his hole. In his hole. I don’t know. This was atmospheric but forgettable.
However, during my second attempt, focused on avoiding the previous fiasco and intent on blowing past the contrived puzzles, I forgot about the periodic rumbling and laugh Mr. Rabbit. The dark lighting and creepy atmosphere was slowly doing its work as I grinded away at the simplistic puzzles.
Then it happened. Lulled into a false sense of confidence, I completed what felt like the last puzzle as the in-game rumbling caught up with my in-gut rumbling and the laughter descended on me in a crescendo of terror and…
I shouldn’t have had Taco Bell for lunch.
I don’t know why it had this effect on me. I’ve beaten Resident Evil 7 in VR mode, and played many other horror offerings. But for some reason this one did it to me.
I wish I could say it was all worth it. It’s hard to recommend “The Rabbit Hole” as a game. It was extremely brief, surprisingly frustrating to control, and the puzzles were poorly implemented and no harder than introductory survival horror key-code riddles.
But it’s not hard to recommend “The Rabbit Hole” as a laxative. So there’s that.