The Thing

aka: Das Ding aus einer anderen Welt, La Cosa, La Cosa, Nechto, The Thing: O Enigma de Outro Mundo, Yuusei kara no Buttai X: Episode II
Moby ID: 7168
PlayStation 2 Specs
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Description official descriptions

Set after the events of the 1982 John Carpenter movie, The Thing is a squad based 3rd person shooter, where each member of your team is equipped with a range of weapons and items to help you in your quest to destroy The Thing.

You must use every player in the squad if you wish to proceed through each level, and once you find one of the thousands of alien creatures through-out the complex, weapons such as flame throwers, pistols and more come into play.

20 levels are on offer, with humans scattered around the area. But are they friend or an infected foe? Trust is the key to success.

Spellings

  • Нечто - Russian spelling
  • 突变怪物 - Simplified Chinese spelling

Groups +

Screenshots

Promos

Credits (PlayStation 2 version)

147 People (112 developers, 35 thanks) · View all

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 77% (based on 50 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.6 out of 5 (based on 73 ratings with 6 reviews)

Excellent movie adaption, great atmosphere: I am infected, trust me !

The Good
The atmosphere is dense, the movie was captured very well. The graphics are outstanding with their great fire, snow, wind and illumination effects. The sound is awesome, the movie like engine-cutscenes are excellent.

The Bad
Savepoints.They are well placed, but nothing beats the standard saving system (via hotkey, at best). The team managment is okay and adds more depth and a certain paranoia factor, but the handling could have been easier.

The Bottom Line
Its a great game in the tradition of Resident Evil and the gfx look so much better. Having played this, I would say that a real 3D environment is indeed better than the static prerendered backgrounds that this "survival horror" genre offers normally. Good step ahead, and a lof of fun to play ! But maybe my vote is beeing affected by my....infection ?

Windows · by Emmanuel Henne (23) · 2003

Great concept with only marginal realization.

The Good
"Uh-oh! A horror film license. I smell another Evil Dead on the way." Many of you must be thinking this very thing, as was I when I first heard of the game but thankfully you can breathe a little easier. This ain't no disaster, in fact despite its flaws The Thing is one of the best film to game licenses to come along in quite a while.

Taking the mantle of official sequel to the original film, The Thing place shortly after the originals conclusion. You've been sent to the antarctic base that the film took place on to find out what happened. Naturally you and your men soon find that all is not well and are soon fighting for your lives. The introduction sets a very creepy mood as you explore the empty remains of a base with your squad. Rooms are torn apart as well as people, everything looks like serious havoc was going on at some time prior to your arrival. The tension doesn't end there though because you can't stay outside for long or you'll die of exposure to the cold and inside you have to hold your team together as you encounter various gruesome scenes. You see, your squad will actually freak out in response to the things they see. In extreme cases some members will lose it totally and start shooting at anyone and anything making them a serious danger. You can use various methods to calm them such as leaving the stress bringing area or in extreme cases, giving them a shot of adrenaline which will stop them accidentally blowing your head off in a blind panic. Also added to the fresh ideas mix is a rather innovative trust system. Due to the nature of the enemy in The Thing, any human could become a monster at any time and so characters won't necessarily follow you blindly on account of the fact that you may be infected. Of course this works the other way too as at any moment a member of your squad could mutate and attack you, which they often seem to do. There are 3 types of allies you can find on your travels, soldiers, engineers and medics which all perform various different functions for you but it's the engineers that you'll really need as they can fix things that are beyond your expertise.

Graphically The Thing is very solid and crisp and despite the rather mundane setting the locales are rather interesting to explore. Voices are fairly well done and sound is of a high quality with minimal use of music at key events.

The Bad
It may have a lot of good ideas but The Thing often leaves most of them half realized. The great trust system idea is basically reduced to a case of 'character (a) won't follow you because you can't be trusted so you give said character a gun of some type and he's ready to follow you to the ends of the earth'. This is repeated for anyone you come across.

Another great idea thrown down the tubes is the blood test. In theory you can administer a blood test to see if anyone is infected. What actually happens quite frequently is you test someone and they come out negative then 2 seconds later they turn into a monster because they were scripted to do so. What on earth was the point of that? The blood tests may as well be thrown out for all the good they do you. It's practically a given that anyone you meet will eventually turn to the bad guys so who cares anyway?

The story is also very broken. Often you find yourself exiting one area only to be somewhere miles away with no cutscene explaining what happened. I trapsed through many levels blasting monsters unsure of my objective other than I had to get to the next stage, only remembering when a brief, often pointless cutscene would remind me that there was some kind of half-assed plot going on here.

The inevitable boss monster encounters are also awful and horribly unbalanced. The bosses were all fairly tough except for the final boss who was such a push over that you could almost do it with your eyes shut. Add to all of this the fact that most levels serve no real purpose other than providing filler and suddenly things aren't quite as rosy as they could have been.

The Bottom Line
A decent survival horror blaster with a lot of good ideas but failure to capitalize on them ultimately robs The Thing of a place in the hall of horror gaming fame.

Windows · by Sycada (177) · 2002

A great game that flew under the radar

The Good
The Thing is a sequel to the original 1982 movie of the same name. The guys who made this game stayed true to the movie's premise to make it feel like a true sequel.Even though it was given good reviews by the press such as Gamespy and IGN, it wasn't really a best-seller. It has great storytelling, the AI is impressive with the Trust/Fear interface, and its full of action that would make John Carpenter proud.

The Bad
Sometimes the npc's would get stuck behind doors, however it rarely occurred.

The Bottom Line
If you like 3rd person action games, the original movie, or survival-horror, you NEED to play this game. It truly is a classic. Best thing of all, its cheap now. So get out there and pick this one up.

PlayStation 2 · by Mike K (5) · 2004

[ View all 6 player reviews ]

Trivia

Audio files

If you use WinRAR, you can extract a hidden audio file from The Thing's data folder. The file: "creditsspeech.ogg", is an easter egg featuring Presidents Bush II, Reagan, Bush I, Clinton, game characters, and others congratulating Blake on a job well done.

Cameo

John Carpenter himself makes a cameo appearance as Dr. Faraday, the head of Gen Inc you meet halfway through the game. Apparently Carpenter went down to the programmer's studios and had his face scanned into the game. This explains why Carpenter says the game has "an incredibly cool and handsome character in Dr. Faraday" in his praise of the game on the inside cover of the box.

German version

There are various changes in the German version: * Almost all blood effects removed * The mutation animation was shortened * Headless corpses used as level decoration were replaced with regular corpses and cut off limbs removed altogether * Team members don't perform suicide * Death animations of humans were removed * Removed death cries * In two cutscenes violent scenes were removed

A detailed list of changes can be found on schnittberichte.com (German).

Inspiration

The Thing is based on the 1982 cult movie The Thing by John Carpenter. That movie is actually a remake of 1951's The Thing From Another World by Howard Hawks and that movie in turn is based on the 1943 short story Who Goes There? by John W. Campbell.

Transformation

When your NPC teammates turn into the Thing, they generally turn into the same monster... one with a head that looks a little like a skinless lizard. However, there is one character called Fisk who, if infected, transforms into a slightly different looking Thing with a distorted, stretched-out human face.

Since Fisk is a Gen Inc trooper, and since the troopers were originally supposed to be infected humans who would burst out to attack you, it's possible this is a leftover from the original game design, especially since the Fisk-Thing seems kind of buggy as it's head tends to disappear when you look at it from different angles.

References

  • Near the beginning of the game, you'll find the sign seen at the first part of the movie noting where you are.
  • A few moments later you will get into some pit, where you will find the remains of MacReady's shack. Inside the shack, you will find the recorder with MacReady's message. It is not the original recording done in the movie. Rather, it was done by a soundalike, and was timed differently.
  • In the room where you encounter the character named Carter, you will find the infamous Norwegian who cut his own throat to avoid being taken over.
  • The first set of CCTV camera controls you get to mess with will switch you to a view of the room behind a door needing an access code. Fans of the movie will instantly recognize this room: Look around and you'll find the ice block the Thing was originally thawed from!

Trailer

If you let the game's menu screen sit for a minute or two, the game's trailer starts. The trailer is also available if you explore the installed FMV folder.

Information also contributed by Alan Chan, CaptainCanuck, Dr. M. "Schadenfreude" Von Katze and Terrence Bosky.

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Kartanym.

Additional contributors: MAT, Zovni, Unicorn Lynx, Quapil, tbuteler, Christian Munive, Patrick Bregger, Danfer.

Game added August 26, 2002. Last modified January 27, 2024.