There are several asylums around the world that date back centuries. I’m wondering if Hanwell is like this, and if so whether or not its long history factors into the story at all?
First, keep in mind the game itself takes place during the 70’s, so the “technology” you’ll see in the asylum is intentionally dated.
By the time you enter the institute, it’s roughly a 100 years old. So not centuries, but old enough. And yes, its long and very detailed story will play an important role in the game