Come in from the Cold
Product: Cryostasis
Company: 1C Company
Date: 07/18/2007
Avaliable On:

Cryostasis is something a little different from 1C, a company known mostly for its line of strategy games. Cryostasis is an FPS, but with a bit of a survival horror styled twist that places you in dark environments with only your wits and gun to protect you.

Playing as Alexander Nesterov, you find yourself stuck on an ice-breaker trapped in the artic circle. Given the harsh conditions outside the ship, you must retreat to the confines of the ship, which also plays home to a number of weird experiments. You goal is to work your way through the shipís dark corridors solving puzzles and fighting enemies.

One of the more unique features in Cryostasis is that your health is represented as your body heat. The ship is covered in frost, so everything has a bit of a chill to it, which will slowly deplete your health. At various points in the game, youíll have to venture outside the ship, exposing you to extreme cold and more damage. Mutants haunting the shipís passages use cold as a weapon. The only way to survive is to find heat sources around the ship, which can be anything from a light bulb to a huge fire. The catch is that the size of the heat source will determine how much health is restored.

Puzzles are based on the something called a mental echo. Whenever you come across a corpse, youíll be able to touch it and see the last thing they saw. After viewing the last seconds of their life, youíll also be able to enter the past and slightly influence events to help you in the future. For example, a piece of debris may be blocking a door; touching the nearby body will show you how that debris came to block the door, so youíll have to enter the past and prevent it from happening.

Cryostasis isnít flying high on many gamers' radars, but is interesting enough that it could easily become one of this yearís sleeper hits with the right amount of press and word of mouth.

Starscream aka Ricky Tucker

GameVortex PSIllustrated