It hasn’t been a year since PC gamers were able to explore the ruins of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant and its surroundings, as we told you in the Chernobylite PC review back then. Although there was already a version for PS4 and Xbox One last autumn, the title only reached the new generation consoles a few days ago. For that reason, I won’t go into too much detail on aspects like its story or its narrative, preferring to focus on how the game feels and its mechanics with the transition from keyboard and mouse to a DualSense controller since to the PlayStation 5 version It’s the one I used in this analysis.
To summarize the background of the story a bit, in case you didn’t know, chernobylite is a shooter with strong RPG and survival horror elements which deals with the investigation of our protagonist, Igor, a scientist who worked at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant when it was still active. 30 years later he has returned to the area where he hopes to find clues to his wife’s whereabouts Tatyana, disappeared in those fateful days of the reactor explosion. At the same time, a plot is being developed about Chernobyl, a new source of energy that comes from the atomic explosion and that feeds a portal creation tool that allows us to manipulate space-time and create several different game paths.
A priori, these elements promise an interesting sci-fi adventure, but the truth is so the result doesn’t match the premise. The story develops little by little through the clues and characters that we meet during our preparatory missions up to the final attack on the ruins of the facility, but in such a diffuse way and little connected to our actions that interest is quickly lost. To make matters worse, the missions that are the game’s central axis are repetitive without success. In almost all of them we will have to get from the starting point to the main objective marker, collecting all the materials we can along the way to avoid dying trying.
It is on these walks and explorations that we can enjoy the artistic element of the game the most, with highly detailed landscapes and environments. Visually, the elements renewed for the occasion, such as the fog or the sun’s rays filtering through the trees, create this perfect atmosphere, right to enter a desolate and hostile world. This “coldness” is felt even when we walk through buildings and structures in which objects have been frozen in time due to the sudden abandonment of the entire area by radiation. Of course, it is an important piece of advice when playing Disable the motion blur option immediatelywhich is at a very high level by default.
And since we’re talking about visual customizations, I missed an option to do that Enlarge subtitles, which is also important since the game’s default language is Russian (although there is an option to dub in English, the original is much better). Quickly accessing items like the environmental scanner or weapons is done in multiple steps using the D-Pad where a joystick scroll wheel would have been a more elegant way out.
Possibly the accessibility in the difficulty levels of each game element (resource management, combat and survival) is one of the best choices to mitigate a bit this premature disinterest in the story, since we can focus on enjoying the rest of the elements e.g. B. improving the base or the collection of materials in a more pleasant way. Survival itself isn’t particularly challenging, although you’ll have to keep an eye on the radiation indicators and be careful to find food rations, which are essential and at the same time very scarce to keep our entire human team in good shape.
Analyzing the PC version, our colleague Petter rated the stealth and combat elements positively, but this time the Transfer to the controls is not sufficient. Aiming is awfully clunky, and even adjusting the sensitivity (or even turning on the aim assist option) doesn’t feel snappy or fun. I was particularly frustrated in this aspect, although I want to give credit to the game, which allows me to face any situation as I want: if I’m low on ammo, I better try to access it stealthily or with traps. The problem is that, apart from being short on ammo, all of this is more of a disadvantage than an advantage when aiming the gun doesn’t flow. In the end, the enemies will most likely kill you, and on top of that, you have to complete a repeating “prison break” mission. If the story doesn’t entice and the combat doesn’t hold up, the rest of the components will have a hard time keeping me playing.
And yes, I love post-apocalyptic themed games. Fallout, the Metro series or STALKER are among the titles that are particularly close to my heart and my idea was to add Chernobylite to the list. The decision-making system and the possibility of being able to change some of them thanks to the portals is interesting, and the exploration is also quite successful. But even when you see its potential and positive points, that’s how it feels could have been so much more. The version of the new generation consoles (PS5 and Xbox Series X | S) has stayed at one harbor Point by point with some graphical improvements, but that left out some elements of this hardware that are crucial, such as the controls.