Lost Planet: Extreme Condition
Lost Planet: Extreme Condition is a new pearl in the crown of Capcom who seems to be releasing one top game after the other. Lost Planet mainly brings two things on your screen, action and snowy surroundings, but does it rock hard and ice cold. It’s been some time since a game took the old-skool approach in such a way, even if it was warmly packed in spectacular visual effects, graphics and cut-scenes, a couple of innovations and a fun multiplayer package.
The extreme world in which you get to work with Wayne is a surrounding of vast and uninhabitable white plains, treaturous and ice-filled mountains, and frozen military and scientific buildings. Even the lava streams and underground vulcanos that are located here and there can’t help you and you’ll have to use so-called “Thermal Energy” to keep warm. The fact that you quickly run out of this and need to fill it up by defeating enemies makes for a feeling of urgency that adds to the hectic and non-stop action.
The game really gets to temperature when the more and more screen-filling and beautifully designed monsters open their jaws and fill the virgin white surroundings with bloody meetings and ear-deafening sound. The human opponents are a lot less exciting but that won’t stop you from warming up on the intelligent level design which allows for tons of freedom and side-tracking as well as surprise by the large and unexpected interaction of the surroundings. This all comes together in formidable boss fights, the ultimate confrontations where the whole single player experience is about.
These are both a blessing and a curse for the game. Classic in their setup you need to look for weaknesses during the fights, discover attack and movement patterns and then try to survive them while the giant attackers keep coming back from the dead. Despite their quality, or maybe because of it, you’ll try to finish the rest of the levels as fast as possible to reach that end fight. Unfortunately the makers didn’t predict that as it is easy to run, jump or fly past a large portion of the confrontations.
The latter can be done thanks to the Vital Suits (VS), some sort of Mechs that you can equip with several weapons of which there are several types present. These VS’s are mechanical and fun designed fighting machines that bring a welcome variation to the pieces you do on foot and give you that little extra firepower you need.
What the game lacks on audio is made up by the beautiful graphics while the lack of variation and depth of the single player campaign is countered by a surprising, interesting and tactical multiplayer component.
The attentive reader has seen by now that Lost Planet is more than worth it, even without the multiplayer which managed to keep us busy for hours despite its many obvious flaws. A game we happily recommend but mostly a strong beginning of hopefully a new promising series from Capcom