Cryofall Has All the Trappings of a Survival Game, For Better or Worse

CryoFall

CryoFall, an online sci-fi survival and crafting game from Atomic Torch Studio, has a few unique ideas to bring to the crafting/survival sim table.

Its tech-heavy sci-fi game world is definitely a welcome touch, especially when zombies seem to dominate this genre normally. Being able to augment your body with tech to improve your skills and stats, and therefore your chances of survival, is a cool feature. The massive always-online player count — in both PvP and PvE servers — is pretty cool also. I love seeing other players milling about, struggling against the game’s many monsters and predators, and building their own settlements. It really adds to the mood of this tech-driven survival lifestyle.

All that said, Cryofall‘s early hours are a bit of a slog, with a lot of the old “chop down X number of trees and collect X number of items to craft Y” tasks. Then, of course, it’s rinse and repeat as you learn more recipes. I get that this is the general nature of the genre, but without much else going on, this can get boring quick.

Some of that might be due to the sort of cutesy aesthetic, which I would say is in the vein of Fallout Shelter meets Don’t Starve, with a bit of Zelter thrown in. And although it’s hard to avoid wearing your influences on your sleeve (I can’t say for sure whether or not the aforementioned games were influences at all), the mundane elements of the early grind is a bit of a hard sell. I mean, my eyes glaze over when I’m trying to accomplish small tasks like putting together a bedroll or crafting an axe.

Thankfully, resources are abundant, at least in the early stages of the game, and recipes usually don’t demand an absurd amount of ingredients.

CryoFall

CryoFall‘s crafting system is relatively straightforward, so even if you don’t have a lot of survival game experience, it shouldn’t be too intimidating. I mean, I imagine most players will assume right away that you will probably need wood, bindings, and stone to make an axe, right?

The crafting menus are easy to navigate and understand, and often there are tips in the quest log to point you in the right direction — or sometimes flat-out walk you through exactly what you need in order to accomplish a task.

And with each task completed, you earn points that can be spent learning things such as building and clothing blueprints. In fact, this is where CryoFall offers its most rewarding and addictive gameplay loop. I mean, this is pretty much Survival/Crafting Games 101, but at least in CryoFall, early-game crafting is a series of fairly low hurdles thanks to the intuitive, informative menus and an abundant supply of resources.

CryoFall

I suspect the difficulty curve will swing upward once you start reaching higher-tier crafting recipes and really start to explore the tech-augmentation side of things, or once you start to engage in random game events like falling debris in a specific designated part of the map.

The only struggle for me is putting up with the early slog to see what CryoFall truly has on offer. I’m curious to see more, to see what Atomic Torch has in store to keep the player base engaged over the long term.

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