Cryofall is a survival game with a well-designed progression system and survival mechanics, but there isn’t enough content to justify the grind.
Developer AtomicTorch Studio’s CryoFall is a top-down multiplayer survival game that has spent almost two years in Steam’s Early Access program. Just like the titan of the genre Rust, you have to learn many different tips and strategies to survive in CryoFall. The first hours of a game in CryoFall are stressful and packed with things to do, but over time the game starts to slip and the small amount of available content quickly runs out.
CryoFall takes place in a hostile alien world that sports a top-down 2D aesthetic reminiscent of the style of Don’t starve. Like most survival games, the player will have to travel the world collecting different types of resources like wood, stone and ore in order to craft machines or tools to help them collect these resources more efficiently. In addition to this hunger and thirst, one has to find reliable sources of food and water, which can be extremely hard due to the hostile creatures that roam the planet.
One of the most interesting aspects of CryoFall is that it has a progression system that allows technology to be researched in several different categories. By completing tasks such as mining rocks or cutting trees, learning points are earned. These points can then be spent in the Technology tab to acquire technological advancements. Depending on which survival methods the player wishes to focus on, they will determine which technologies to research. Those interested in working with food items can put points in the Cooking and Agriculture sections, while those trying to explore the world should research Offense and Defense to craft some of the CryoFall’s best weapons. This gives a decent amount of control over how the game is played.
To help acquire learning points, CryoFall also uses both a quest and an achievement system. Quests are special tasks that reward a certain number of learning points when completed. These tasks range from simple tasks like visiting a specific part of the map to more complicated tasks like killing five types of animals around the world. Achievements, on the other hand, earn players points each time they get a new item, such as when they discover one of the CryoFall’s types of food. Each new item can be traded in the menu for ten learning points each and can then be spent as the player wishes. These give concrete goals to focus on from the early hours CryoFall, which greatly helps in progression.
One thing that defines CryoFall apart from other online survival games, there are two different game modes. While there is no single player mode at the moment, overly aggressive users can be avoided by joining a PvE server rather than PvP. In PvE, people will not be able to harm themselves and will not be able to steal or damage property that does not belong to them. This makes it a perfect learning environment for those who want to get used to the game and its mechanics without being constantly murdered by heartaches. PvE is similar to Rust Softcore mode, but it makes it even easier for newcomers to adjust by completely removing the threat from others.
The main problem with CryoFall is that once a few hours have been spent with it, things start to drag on. After completing the first section of tech, the progression slows down at a snail’s pace and it rarely feels like there’s a lot of reason to invest in a lot of tech that is unlocked. After ten hours with the game, a point will be reached where there are no more quests to complete or objectives to pursue. Progress becomes too difficult for some CryoFall’s tech levels like Electricity without any quests, which seems intentional to cover up the fact that there isn’t a lot of content to explore. Coming to the midpoint of technology, there is little reason to keep playing.
CryoFall doesn’t look like a 1.0 version, but rather a title that just landed in early access. While the survival mechanics and progression systems are well designed, there isn’t enough content to justify spending much time with the game. Hardcore survival fans looking to explore a new world with mechanics familiar ones will probably have fun with CryoFall, but most will be better off playing a more popular title with the same central vanities.
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CryoFall’s 1.0 was released on Steam on March 29, 2021. Screen Rant has received a PC code for the purposes of this review.
CryoFall: How to get food and water
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