Ever since Lionsgate Games and the Bloober team released the teaser trailer for Blair Witch at E3, we’ve been keen to learn more about the game and how it would differentiate itself from the 1999 film. Now there’s an all new story trailer, and it gives us some insight into the protagonist at the center of Blair Witch. Players will control Ellis, a former cop who joins in the search for a young boy who disappears in the Black Hills Forest near Burkittsville, Maryland. The trailer hints that Ellis is guilt-ridden and distraught—essentially, the perfect target for the Blair Witch.
“I’m not going to screw this up. Not this time,” Ellis promises over the walkie-talkie. He’s haunted by some grievous mistake, which is also probably why he’s no longer a cop. The repeated imagery of knives and guns hints that whatever Ellis did, it likely cost someone their life. The Blair Witch is using his past to torment him, after all, so it has to be pretty bad.
“There are mistakes we fear and wrongs that haunt us, but the worst are the sins we choose to forget,” says Ellis. There’s different ways to interpret what he means by “sins.” It’s possible Ellis shot someone he shouldn’t have while on duty. Or he made a mistake that caused a child to pass away, and that’s why he’s so driven to find this new missing boy. We see lights flash over a poster of a boy named “Peter Shannon” — that might be the child that’s currently MIA, or it could be a hallucinatory callback to Ellis’ blunder.
There’s also the question of Bullet, Ellis’ trusty sidekick. In the trailer someone says that Bullet’s “been through a lot, just like you.” We see a scene of Bullet wandering up to Ellis when he enters an office, which hints that Bullet first belonged to someone else. Did Bullet’s owner die because of something Ellis did, and Ellis adopted him out of guilt? If so, that doesn’t exactly bode well for the player, since your ability to navigate Black Hills Forest is pretty dependent on having a good relationship with your doggo.
All in all, the trailer hints at a unique, wholly new story for players to dive into. It appears to be a balance of drama and horror, and hopefully both diehard fans and newcomers alike will find something in it for them. Blair Witch launches worldwide on August 30, 2019 on the Xbox One X and PC.
Images: Lionsgate Games, Bloober Team