Trapped within those four walls? Get out and see another set of walls – and another – and another! The Red Exile is full of ’em as you appear trapped in a labyrinth of rooms with the same interior designer as seen in Twin Peaks. There’s a lot of red.

What brings us here today? Who knows? Eastasiasoft? We know that a psychopath is chasing you down with a two-handed axe, clearly not looking to friend you up. The only way to escape this nightmare is by performing a ritual and ending the loop.

The goal in The Red Exile is to collect five candles, place them on the ground to complete the ritual, and then it’s all done. In theory, you could spot all the candles early on and, in theory, complete the game in a few minutes. However, as this is a procedurally generated experience, the chances of it happening is slim.

The Red Exile Review PS5 - RUN
RUN! Source: Eastasiasoft

The Red Exile Review (PS5)

For starters, you can only carry three items at a time. Sure, you can drop something if your pockets are full, but it’ll never be seen again. Best keep hold of it, or better still: don’t pick up pointless items. Ok, pointless is a little harsh for a game that only features three objects to interact with, but the third, a syringe that gives our little runner a boost, seems a waste of time as it’ll only give you the edge if you see the killer first.

Those other two items are the candles you’re seeking, plus disposable crowbars that break down blocked doors. The Red Exile will see you running from room to room, opening a door, hoping it’ll reveal some candles and not the killer. If within an arm’s length or so, the killer will instantly kill you, with a thoughtful close-up of his face to follow.

Besides the slaying, he’ll break down doors when chasing you. Swing a door back on them, and they’ll take that opportunity to break it down, giving you a chance to run for it or hide in one of the random lockers scattered about. Do you have any other abilities or objects? Nope. But there are numerous perks to unlock, and you can assign three at a time.

The Red Exile Review PS5 - Perks of the job
Perks of the job. Source: Eastasiasoft

Perks Of The Job

These perks can be borderline game changers, but you won’t know what they are until you invest the points you’ve acquired (from accumulated runs). Sometimes they feel like a waste of time, such as the ‘premium’ perk of knowing when your pursuer is within 16 metres, which didn’t help. Others will spawn more items and perhaps have fewer blocked doors.

While the perks in The Red Exile add to the replay value, by the time you do light the final candle, you’ll most likely be done with the game, as there isn’t much else to offer. Getting the Platinum in the game is more to do with perseverance than skill, i.e. bash down 36 doors or explore a few hundred rooms – easily achievable through repeat plays.

Is The Red Exile scary? As a horror movie connoisseur but horror game wuss, I have to say I wasn’t scared once, nor did it get me with a jump scare. If anything, it’s more frustrating than scary. The visuals are nice, but each room resembles the last – boxes, baths, and a plethora of red. There’s not much in the way of ambience, but enough to make me want to stick it out, albeit for a couple of hours until completion.

Verdict

The Red Exile isn’t a scary experience, nor is it so much a challenging game either. It depends on what perks you unlock and whether you encounter the killer or not. If you can see or hear them close by, expect to do another run, as there’s not much chance of escape. A short experience but entertaining enough for what it is.