Monday, April 30, 2018

Frostpunk Gameplay Review

I'm playing Frostpunk, a city survival management game by 11 bit studios.

The game features a finite main story-based campaign (the length of which depends on how quickly you progress through the story) with the same map and same scripted events each time through. With only two other side scenarios and no sandbox mode, replay value is very low, especially for a city builder. Lowering discontent and raising hope is the overall goal, performed by placing buildings, extracting resources, and keeping everyone alive. Coal, wood, and steel can be collected from the environment and (later) specific buildings. Food must also be collected and processed. Buildings can only be placed next to streets that radiate outward from the central generator. Most of the game involves deciding where to assign your limited workforce. Cold ambient temperatures require heating structures to keep people from getting sick, though medical facilities can be utilized. Laws can be enacted periodically, and an extensive research tree unlocks new buildings or improves existing ones. The surrounding area can also be scouted for resources, new settlers, and to advance the story. The game is very challenging, as the conditions are harsh and the people are finicky. Frostpunk is a compelling city builder with a strong emphasis on survival in a unique setting but little reason to experience the highly scripted campaign more than once.