Alone in the Dark Guidance Featured

Alone in the Dark: Should You Use Modern or Old School Guidance?

Why not both?

With a huge focus on investigation and uncovering hidden clues, Alone in the Dark brings two guidance options to players starting a new game: using the Modern or the Old School settings. Here is what each of them does in practice.

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Alone in the Dark Guidance Modes Explained

While mystery is part of the narrative, Alone in the Dark offers you the option to make things easier to uncover with its guidance settings. The game presents you with two options which are the polar opposites of each other.

Modern

Set as the default option. Hidden items, clues and Lagniappes will be highlighted with a flashlight at all times, making it hard to miss what you need to interact with to advance the story. It also highlights important text portions from written clues such as diaries or notes, making it easy to figure out your next step.

Old School

Take away everything I just mentioned and you’ve got yourself Old School mode. There will be no indications at all for your next objective/clue, so summon your inner detective and start interacting with everything that seems remotely suspicious until you figure it out. The interaction button still shows when approaching an important item, so it’s not as impossible as it sounds.

But there’s always a third way around. You can make your own custom settings by deciding which of the following indicators will be active during your playthrough. These are always active when using Modern, and none will be present when going with Old School.

  • Text Highlighting (when checking written clues)
  • Map Highlighting (when opening the current map)
  • Dynamic Objects (brighter indicator for items, also adds extra hints for puzzles)
  • Reveal Interaction Points (brighter indicator)

Should You Play with Modern or Old School Guidance?

If you’re only playing for the storyline and a few scares here and there, you should go with Modern. Investigation and puzzles could take a while, especially if you missed some important details from the dialogue. If you feel like your time is more precious than standing around knocking your head on the wall until something happens, there’s no problem at all with picking this one.

Particularly, I enjoy Old School the most as I love a good mystery, and solving puzzles on my own always gives me a satisfying feeling. Not everyone is the same, of course, so it’s all up to you as to which option you should pick.

If you don’t like the idea of having your hand held at all times but feel like the game is still too confusing at times (and yeah, it is), you can make your custom assets. Having the map highlight option active at all times and keeping other indicators off makes a huge difference while still keeping a good portion of the original challenge in the puzzles, for example.

At the end of the day, this is all up to your liking. Guidance choices can be changed anytime at the game’s menu during your gameplay, and they have nothing to do with the game’s difficulty settings, even though they technically affect these directly.


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Author
Patrick Souza
Patrick has been working for Prima since 2022 and joined as a Staff Writer in 2023. He's been interested in gaming journalism since college, and that was the path he took once he had his degree in hands. Diligently ignores his ever-growing backlog to keep raiding in Final Fantasy XIV, exploring in Genshin Impact or replaying some of his favorite RPGs from time to time. Loves tackling hard challenges in games, but his cats are still the hardest bosses he could ask for.