Five Nights at Freddy's is an indie point-and-click survival horror video game developed by Scott Cawthon and was released on August 9th, 2014. The goal is for the player to try to survive the night at Freddy Fazbear's Pizza while avoiding getting caught by the animatronics.
The sequel, Five Nights at Freddy's 2, was released on Steam on November 11th, 2014.
A third game, Five Nights at Freddy's 3, was announced in early January 2015; its release date was March 2nd, 2015.
A fourth game, Five Nights at Freddy's 4, was announced on April 27th, 2015, and it has a scheduled release date of October 31st, 2015.
Welcome to your new summer job at Freddy Fazbear's Pizza, where kids and parents alike come for entertainment and food as far as the eye can see! The main attraction is Freddy Fazbear, of course; and his two friends. They are animatronic robots, programmed to please the crowds! The robots' behavior has become somewhat unpredictable at night however, and it was much cheaper to hire you as a security guard than to find a repairman.
From your small office you must watch the security cameras carefully. You have a very limited amount of electricity that you're allowed to use per night (corporate budget cuts, you know). That means when you run out of power for the night- no more security doors and no more lights! If something isn't right- namely if Freddybear or his friends aren't in their proper places, you must find them on the monitors and protect yourself if needed!
Can you survive Five Nights at Freddy's?
The player sits in an office and monitors security cameras positioned throughout the restaurant to observe the animatronic mascots. The player has a limited amount of power to view camera feeds, light hallways, and close the doors on either side of them and once the power is out Freddy will show in the left hallway singing his song. Once he's done with the song he will jump scare you causing an instant death.
The player must use the camera feeds to locate all four animatronics in the building, and hold them off using the doors. If the player fails to do this, they will be killed with a jumps care. To advance to the next night, the player must survive from 12:00 AM until 6:00 AM.
Five Nights at Freddy's received positive reviews from critics. Indie Game Magazine praised Five Nights at Freddy's for its simple take on the horror genre, noting that its artistic direction and gameplay mechanics contributed to a feeling of "brutal tension" — worsened by how a player may be familiar with similar restaurants such as Chuck E. Cheese's, and that "it's an incredibly terrifying experience to try to save yourself from the single jump scare that ends the game". In conclusion, Five Nights at Freddy's was considered a "fantastic example of how cleverness in design and subtlety can be used to make an experience terrifying". However, the game was criticized for taking too long to load when launched.
Omri Petitte for PC Gamer gave Five Nights at Freddy's a score of 80 out of 100, commenting that the game took a "less-is-more" approach to its design, and that while "the AI isn't some masterwork of procedural unpredictability", it would "[still] head straight to you and eat your face off, or it'll play around like an innocent child before closing in for the kill. Your mind will fill in the rest." The game's overall atmosphere was praised for emphasizing the fear and suspense of an approaching threat, rather than the arrival of the threat itself as in other horror-oriented games. However, the gameplay of Five Nights at Freddy's was criticized for becoming repetitive once a player masters it, as there is "not much more to expect beyond managing battery life and careful timing of slamming doors shut, so those with steely willpower won't find anything else past the atmosphere of it all." Ryan Bates of Game Revolution gave the game a 4.5 out of 5; comparing its camera-oriented gameplay to the 1992 game Night Trap, he praised the game's minimalistic presentation (with particular emphasis on its audio design and lack of music) for contributing to the terror of the game, along with the fact that the "nervous impulses" of its repetitive gameplay would "[reach] almost OCD-type levels, adding to the tense environment." In conclusion, he felt that the game was "horror done right", but that it was too short.
Eurogamer's Jeffrey Matulef compared the animatronic animals in the game to Weeping Angels — predatory creatures from the universe of Doctor Who — due to their ability to only move when they are not being observed. Softpedia gave the game 4 out of 5 stars, with reviewer Cosmin Anton noting that it "drifts away from the classic first-person horror survival titles", but that the "inability to move combined with the limited power available will make you feel quite helpless in front of those relentless robots that just want to share a bit of their 'love' with you".
On August 25th and September 11th of 2014, ports of Five Nights at Freddy's were released for Android and iOS devices respectively. While the premise of the game remained the same, gameplay is slightly different due to having to use a touch screen rather than a mouse.
Version 1.13 was an update for the game that was released on August 19th. The update fixed minor bug issues and added a few new small things.
- On the Custom Night, inputting the A.I.'s levels to 1-9-8-7 will cause Golden Freddy's death scene to happen instantly, closing the game. This was added by Scott, the developer, to halt rumors about entering 1/9/8/7 into the A.I. settings to get an alternate ending.
- Beating the Custom Night with the A.I. levels set to 20/20/20/20 will now give you the third and final star on the title screen.
- On June 13th, 2014, Five Nights at Freddy's was submitted to the Steam Greenlight.
- On July 14th, a trailer for Five Nights at Freddy's was uploaded to YouTube.
- On July 24th, a demo of the game was released on the indie games website IndieDB by user animdude.
- On August 9th, the full game was released on the gaming website Desura.
- On August 18th, Five Nights at Freddy's was accepted on Steam Greenlight and then was officially released to Steam platform for PC.
- An Android port was released on August 25th on the Android Google Play Store, by Scott himself.
- An iOS Port was released on September 11th on the iPhone App Store by Scott himself.