By AlexW00d 2 Comments
Finally, a game worth my time.
This is one of the games I actually bought the pack for, so finally getting to play it has been great. I have played about 60% of the game so far, and whilst I am going to finish it, I felt I should write a blog as it has been a while since my last, and I feel I should keep ploughing through these games.
Now, if you know nothing of Cryostasis, firstly, you’re missing out big time, and secondly it’s a Ukrainian developed First-Person-Adventure-Horror game with numerous puzzles and occasional shooting; I think that’s a good way of describing it anyway.
You are Alexander Nesterov, a Russian Meteorologist who is supposed to board the North Wind, a Nuclear Icebreaker, somewhere near the North Pole, but finds it shipwrecked. You board the ship and set out to discover just what caused this.
The game has some really interesting gameplay concepts; the two big ones being body heat and Mental Echoes. In this game you don’t have a typical health meter like in most FPS games - you certainly don’t have regenerating health - but you do have a heat meter. As the game is set on a frozen ship, things are quite cold, and you need to stay as warm as you can; you do this by warming yourself on various heat sources: exposed lights, machinery, fire etc. Obviously when you’re an environment that’s colder than you are, your body temperature will decrease until you equal, and vice versa for when the room you’re in is warmer than you are.
Now, the more confusing of the two; Mental Echoes. You find dead crewmates all around the ship, with flashing red orbs on them, to let you know of course, and you can go back to the last minutes of their lives and can do what they did differently and consequently save their lives. This generally has a big difference to your surroundings in the present; generally opening up the path for you to continue. The game is pretty linear and you need to complete each of the mental echoes to continue with the game.
Now, to that occasional shooting I mentioned; some of the former crew have undergone some sort of ‘changes’ so to speak, essentially, they all want to kill you. You start the game with no weapons, save your firsts, but you accumulate some as you go along: a chain, an axe, a Mosin Nagant and more. Obviously the guns are of the same time period as the ship, and ‘cause of this the reload time are quite long, combined with sparse ammo, you really have to make every shot count. Thankfully, the enemies only take 3 bullets or so, or a couple of swings of your fist or the axe. The enemies also have similar weapons, so any disadvantage you face, the enemy does too.
The biggest draw to this game for me, whilst including a lot of the stuff with the enemies and weapons, if the atmosphere the game creates. It’s a horror game, and I mean the good kind of horror, not dumb jump-scares and silly things you get in most horror games and films, but actual horror. You are pretty fragile throughout the game, only taking a few bullets before you die, so you’re always worried about what will be next, along with the eerie-ness of the boat and the flashbacks, the game provides an actual scary atmosphere, comparable to Amnesia: the Dark Descent.