A new first-person shooter, survival game set in Chernobyl? The last one I played and promptly quit because I don’t do horror was Metro, since then I’ve played games like Outlast and Blair Witch, BUT, ‘Chernobylite’ had me promptly jumping out of my chair and alt-f4ing the game. Chernobylite is an upcoming first-person, science fiction, survival RPG that touches on aspects from base building, colony simulation, and horror. Developed by The Farm 51 and published by All In! Games, these Polish teams have created an immersive, survival masterpiece.
You play as a physicist who was an ex-employee at the Chernobyl Powerplant. Your lover went missing during the events of the powerplant tragedy. It is your sole purpose to investigate and find any information of what happened on that fateful day. Journey through the exclusion zone of Chernobyl and uncover the dark and twisted history and secrets. Build up your band of mercenaries to ultimately raid the powerplant while attempting to ensure stability within your faction.
Beware though, the military presence in the world is not the only thing you need to watch out for! Every decision you make affects the world and characters around you, help a stranger at a checkpoint and they may be inclined to join your team, later on, Rambo your way through an area, and tomorrow there may be increased patrols. Upset your team members and they will leave your group.
Playing through this game, I was constantly scavenging for supplies to ensure my team were fed and had adequate resources in the base, and to complete the missions I sent them on successfully. Building new structures in the base helped me upgrade and create new weapons, armor, and food/healing resources. In the field you can create traps, crafting stations, and environmental altering devices to change the outcome of any battle and the way that area develops in the long run. Not only do you have to keep an eye on your team’s well-being but you must also ensure you remain sane while exploring the exclusion zone.
If your sanity drops too far you will start hallucinating and that’s where the real horror aspect kicks in. Ensure you have a clean pair of underwear and some calming salts, you will need them. The leveling system was a breath of fresh air and something I haven’t experienced before. When you level and talk to a team member to increase your skills, they will take you out to the exclusion zone and you learn to improve them. Whether it be gathering or precision shooting, it actually makes you assume the role of teacher, where you are adapting and upskilling rather than just assigning points and being done with it.
Graphically, Chernobylite has been one of the most thrilling games I’ve had the pleasure to play this year. The 3D scanned recreation of the exclusion zone combined with the intensely dark and atmospheric audio had me so immersed I couldn’t put the game down. I had to find out why everything had turned out as it had and what the dark hidden enemies we were fighting were. Who was this masked villain that always showed up at the most crucial parts of the story through portals like Rick Sanchez only to make me start questioning my own sanity even more?
The audio and background music was intense and really made me feel as though I was venturing through a radioactive wasteland, stealthily taking out the military presence that was blocking my path and who knows what else. The dark gloomy feel of the music was what really made me feel as if I was journeying alone and listening to NPC’s lines of dialogue while I conjured my inner bush Wookie to strategically eradicate the threat before they even knew I was in the area was extremely satisfying.
Chernobylite is still in early access but the game was extremely polished something that triple-A titles have been dropping the ball on a lot lately, *cough cough* “Cyberpunk”. With the multitude of play styles that range from balls to the wall shooting to being a stealthy cut-throat, tactical sniper to pure pacifist with no bloodshed, then this game is for that survival fanatic within you. An amazing story combined with outstanding graphics and creepy immersive audio makes this game one to look out for. I’m very eager to see how they expand on this universe.
- Great leveling mechanics
- Perfect atmosphere
- Intriguing Story
- Awesome survival aspects