Despite wanting to give it a fair shake, and being a fan of weird dystopian future shit, I just couldn’t get into Atomic Heart.
I gave it probably about ten hours, getting to the point where you escape the facility and get outside and there’s cameras and bots to avoid as you make your way across the landscape to the train and after that a trailer-worthy boss fight in a landscaped garden. Then I finally rage/disappointment-uninstalled. (Making room on the XSS for Starfield was also a factor, though I would have finished this game had I actually enjoyed it.)
This game has enough little annoyances, and you quickly hit the wall of the game’s capabilities and scope, that despite liking its overall aesthetic, and wanting more games like this, I wasn’t enjoying my time.
First of all, there’s too much crafting and collecting and shit. Let’s get that out the way now, because these efforts at “creating a personal play style and approach” end up actually dragging down the experience.
The story, I couldn’t tell you much of anything about. It’s simultaneously sweeping and bog-standard.
The protagonist sucks, a detriment to the game that is well advertised by most reviews. But in addition to his character and voice actor sucking, he also sucks to control. No sprinting, slow movement when moving backwards, and no running while strafing or slightly turning to change direction. A baffling decision.
So basically you’re fighting this boss who you have to run away from and whose big body you need to avoid, but you also need to be facing it as it zips around the battlefield, especially to notice when it jumps and sends out flaming shockwaves you need to jump over. But if you want to run away and get space, your back is turned and you can’t time the jumps. But if you’re facing the thing, moving backwards or sideways slows you to a walk. It’s very annoying and I was just over the whole game at that point.
I’m a “patient gamer” who missed years of prime gaming so my game time is usually catching up on slightly older titles. For example Im playing through The Stick of Truth and Axiom Verge on my Deck now. But I’m going to be playing STARFIELD because I pay for Gamepass and I’m so rarely playing whatever the zeitgeist is, never able to participate in the conversation. So that’s on the docket and despite not being a Bethesda or Fallout or Skyrim guy, I’m excited for the possibilities.