Scott Cawthon is the genius behind the horrific franchise of “Five Nights at Freddy’s” (FnaF) and from 2014 to 2018, he independently published and developed the first five games. However, in late 2018, he announced his upcoming projects would be in collaboration with smaller game company Steel Wool Studios. Then in early 2019, “Five Nights at Freddy’s: Help Wanted” was released as the first virtual reality (VR) game of the series. Not only did it include brand new gameplay, but the story line was different as well.
Although “Help Wanted” was VR, it included elements of previous games, such as minigames and the original characters, and it proved to be a favorable success. Three years after the release of “Help Wanted,” Cawthon and Steel Wool released the infamous ninth installment and continuation to the story of “Help Wanted,” “Five Nights at Freddy’s: Security Breach,” in December 2021.
“Security Breach” was first announced in a trailer that premiered at a PlayStation 5 showcase, with the trailer showing new animatronic models, new characters and free roam gameplay that hasn’t been seen in this series before. Fans quickly noticed the new direction “Security Breach” was heading, so for the next year, I and countless fans grew more and more anxious until its release in late 2021.
“Security Breach” is a free roam gameplay, where the player resumes control of a child named Gregory who is stranded in Freddy Fazbear’s Mega Pizza Plex. The animatronic Glamrock Freddy helps the player to complete several missions in order to survive the three other murderous Glamrock animatronics until six a.m., when you are given different options that will determine the player’s ending. Aside from brand new gameplay, “Security Breach” also introduced new original animatronics who haven’t been seen in this franchise before such as Roxanne Wolf, Monty Gator, S.T.A.F.F bots, Sundrop and Moondrop, and the rabbit-dressed antagonist Vanny. Familiar characters include Vanessa the Security Guard from “Help Wanted” and Glamrock versions of Freddy and Chica.
I appreciated the aesthetic contrast “Security Breach” has compared to the previous games. The previous games were blunter with the horror, as they made the animatronics and settings dark and disturbing. However, even though the 1980s-inspired Mega Pizza Plex comes off as an exciting and vibrant atmosphere, the reality is darkness lurks below the surface, quite literally.
The game developers did an impressive job at delivering a unique 80s artistic style, along with delivering fantastic quality graphics. It is clear they modeled the appearance of the animatronics after David Bowie’s fashionable lightning-bolt makeup. The Pizza Plex mall also displays the typical 80s bright neon colors, and continuously plays synthesized music in the background, all of which add to the nostalgic 80s feeling. Although its initial appearance seems unintimidating, the first boss fight with animatronic Chica proves otherwise as you fall into the sewage system below the Pizza Plex. This for me was the scariest part, as I was blindly running through a maze of garbage as a mangled animatronic silently chased me. There are a few other scary moments that occur, such as being chased by Moondrop in the daycare and trying to navigate around endoskeletons that only move when you’re not looking. It’s safe to say that “Security Breach” definitely does not have as much scare factor as the previous installments.
Although the game wasn’t as scary as I had hoped it would be, I did appreciate the nostalgic lore included at the end of the game. Spoiler alert ahead!
At the very end of the game, in order to encounter the final boss fight, you have to go through Roxy Raceway where a secret elevator takes you down to the remains of the old FNaF simulator restaurant. There you go through a hole in the floor and are then faced with the final boss, which turns out to be Burntrap, or, more familiarly, William Afton, who is the antagonist in all previous FNaF games.
While I don’t have a problem with including nostalgic antagonists from previous games, I found it quite unnecessary to include William Afton since his conclusion was supposed to be wrapped up in FNaF Pizza Simulator along with Michael and the rest of the scrap animatronics. His return kind of defeats the purpose of the sixth game and is a slap in the face to Michael Afton’s character development.
I should also point out that while I played on my PS4, there were several lag and glitch problems that made it hard to play. However, there have been several patch updates since I last played, so most of these problems should be fixed by now. Full gameplay requires five to seven hours to complete, depending on how skilled you are or how smoothly your game system works.
Personally, it took me a few days to finish because I had a hard time completing certain levels due to the many glitches and lags that kept occurring. Aside from the minor inconveniences, I think this game is worth a playthrough if you’re a big fan of the FNaF franchise. The upcoming DLC “Ruin” is set to release for free in 2023, which can hopefully answer some of our most unanswered questions regarding the lore of the game.