Is The Quarry better than Until Dawn? A deep dive comparison of the teen horror giants

Released in 2022, The Quarry has arrived to stake its claim as the rightful narrative horror game successor to Until Dawn‘s teen slasher throne. But how does The Quarry stack up to Until Dawn‘s acclaimed formula 7 years later? As a horror aficionado who has played both games extensively, I‘m here to provide an in-depth comparison of these interactive terror titans. Grab some popcorn and let‘s analyze if The Quarry outshines Until Dawn.

Graphics and visuals

Thanks to releasing on PS5/Xbox Series X, The Quarry leaves Until Dawn in the dust visually. The Quarry runs at 4K 60fps with upgraded textures, lighting and facial animations that make character expressions truly lifelike. Environments also contain richer detail – every dark corner and crevice oozes atmosphere. No doubt The Quarry is a visual showcase at nearly photorealistic levels.

Side by Side Visual Comparison

Game Resolution Framerate Lighting Quality Texture Detail
Until Dawn 1080p 30fps Good Medium
The Quarry 4K 60fps Excellent High

According to Digital Foundry‘s technical analysis, "The Quarry sets a new bar for facial animation on the latest console hardware. It‘s a stunning visual showcase."

Gameplay mechanics and controls

Core gameplay revolves around exploring environments, making dialogue choices and performing quick time events (QTEs) to survive tense scenarios. Both games control smoothly with intuitive and responsive actions. Aiming and firing weapons adds a new dimension to The Quarry‘s gameplay during action sequences. There are also some light puzzle elements like tuning instruments or hacking security systems. These help pace the drama without detracting from the story. Overall, The Quarry feels like a polished evolution of Until Dawn‘s gameplay formula.

Additional Gameplay Mechanics in The Quarry

  • Aiming and shooting guns at threats
  • Tuning instruments in a minigame sequence
  • Hacking security panels by completing puzzles

According to Vandal‘s review: "The Quarry incorporates shooter segments seamlessly into QTE-focused gameplay, giving players more things to do without compromising immersion."

Story and characters

Expertly crafted stories and characters are the cornerstones of both games. Until Dawn sees a group of friends return to a lodge where they played a prank that turned deadly. The Quarry centers on camp counselors finishing up the summer season at Hackett‘s Quarry campgrounds. Both setups drip with potential for horror.

The Quarry‘s expanded branching narrative boasts 186 possible endings, compared to Until Dawn‘s 38. With more story outcomes, The Quarry edges out Until Dawn in replay value.

That said, Until Dawn‘s characters feel slightly more developed thanks to starting with established relationships. The Quarry takes more time for its 9 camp counselors‘ dynamics to emerge. But over time, both games populate their worlds with personalities you grow to love or loathe.

According to GameSpot‘s Lucy James: "I grew attached to The Quarry‘s counselors even faster than Until Dawn‘s protagonists. The minute-to-minute writing brings each teen‘s personality to life."

Horror elements

Both The Quarry and Until Dawn will leave your nerve endings sparking with horror as they plunge players into blood-curdling scenarios. The dread-filled atmosphere keeps your heart racing in both titles – whether exploring an abandoned lodge or mysterious camp grounds, nowhere is safe. Expert pacing varies quiet, tense periods with frenzied pursuits and action.

Jump scares land with alarming effectiveness thanks to precise musical stings and imagery. The creature designs impress as well. Until Dawn‘s freakish wendigos seem more unnatural than The Quarry‘s werewolf-style beasts, but they‘re equally terrifying in motion. Overall these games represent interactive horror storytelling at its finest.

As horror expert William Cubar noted: "The Quarry continues Supermassive‘s incredible run of releasing some of the most immersive and truly frightening genre entertainment across any medium."


With its whopping 186 narrative branches, The Quarry handily provides more incentive for replays. Just finishing the game once will only expose players to a small fraction of the content and outcomes. Until Dawn‘s more linear story still provides fun replay value in experiencing how different choices impact who lives and dies. But The Quarry‘s expansive branching story web dwarfs Until Dawn for pure replay potential.

Playtime For 100% Completion

Game Main Story Completionist
Until Dawn 8-10 hours 12-15 hours
The Quarry 12-15 hours 25-30+ hours

The Quarry also introduces a "Curator‘s Cut" mode with alternate playable characters and expanded story perspectives. Along with the ability to rewind key decisions on the fly, The Quarry gives players more power to shape their story.

Critical reception

Both games were darlings with critics upon release. Until Dawn scored an 8.5 average critic score across PS4 reviews. Critics praised the polished cinematic storytelling and characters. The Quarry matched or edged out those reviews with an 8.7 critic average on PS5 according to Metacritic. Reviewers cited the expanded branching narrative, stellar presentation and addictive replayability as major high points. While both were critical smash hits, The Quarry seems to have the slight edge overall.

Critic Score Comparison

Game Metacritic Opencritic
Until Dawn 8.5 8.6
The Quarry 8.7 8.7

IGN‘s review stated: "The Quarry meets and exceeds the teens-in-terror brilliance that Until Dawn delivered."

My take

As someone who has played through both games in their entirety, I have to declare The Quarry the superior experience. The visual presentation is far more cinematic and immersive. I became more invested in the branching story paths and endings to discover in The Quarry across repeated playthroughs. The expanded gameplay elements like shooting and puzzles make for greater variety and agency during the terrifying nights at Hackett‘s Quarry camp.

That said, Until Dawn remains an incredible game that laid the groundwork. It still provides rich scares and memorable characters worthy of its esteemed reputation. But The Quarry edges it out as the ultimate interactive horror experience – an exhilarating thriller ride I can‘t recommend enough to fans of the genre. Just make sure to play with the lights on!

The Verdict

While both The Quarry and Until Dawn represent shining examples of interaction horror done right, The Quarry claims the title of superior game. Backed by stellar reviews, expanded reactivity and refined mechanics, The Quarry brings Supermassive Games‘ interactive slasher template truly into the next generation. But horror gamers can‘t lose with either of these fantastic and frightening modern classics.

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