Reviews// Lost Planet: Extreme Condition

Posted 26 Feb 2008 18:30 by
A couple of things jumped out. The most immediate was a spot of slowdown. It wasn't a crippling problem and I wouldn't say it had much impact on my enjoyment of the game, but it was something that cropped up every ten minutes or so and deserves a mention. It's disappointing given that it didn't seem to be a problem for the 360 version. You'd think, given the amount of time Capcom has had for the port and the amount of experience it now has coding for the PS3, that the problem could have been avoided.

Another was the control system - not so much a gripe this time, however. It's mapped out in the same manner as the 360 version, but I felt more comfortable using the Sixaxis than I did using the 360 controller. The right analogue stick felt a bit more nimble than on its 360 counterpart and I had an overall feeling of more control. You may want to put this down to me just being more comfortable with the PS3 controller, however, since a 360-owning mate came over and grunted about how he preferred the 360 controls.

Graphically, the game hasn't lost anything, but it hasn't gained anything, either. In the opening months of last year, I found Lost Planet dazzling. As the third year of next-gen console games kicks into gear, however, it looks less impressive. Having spent time playing the likes of Uncharted and Heavenly Sword, the snow-covered plains of Lost Planet fail to impress like they once did. It certainly doesn't look bad by any stretch of the imagination, but it has lost a bit of its shine under the light of subsequent releases.

The multi-player is solid, if uninspiring. I'd seen reports that gamers in parts un-European had been having trouble getting the game online, but found no such problem myself. While it's serviceable, however, it's not great.

If you're going to engage in shorter matches, the game's core mechanic (which puts you on a constant timer as you search for heat-giving gooey goodness) becomes irrelevant. If you're likely to die just once or twice in a match, you're unlikely to need to top up your heat levels before the cold gets you.

I also found blasting the bright orange crap out of the Akrid (the monstery-type things that riddle the planet's surface) to be the most enjoyable part of the game.

Given that no one wants to take on the role of a flying fishy thing, the Akrid are absent from the multiplayer component, taking another core element from the online offering.

Realistically, however, if a rich multi-player element is what you're after, you'll be buying/have bought Warhawk or CoD 4...

Finally, you'll find all the multi-player content that has been released for the 360 and PC versions since launch bundled onto the Blu-ray disc.

SPOnG Score: 80%

Lost Planet is still a good, solid third-person shooter. It's fun, it looks good. The online element works. Your ever depleting body heat still makes for a nice game mechanic. The slow-down is disappointing and the game has lost some of its lustre in the year that's passed since the 360 release. Had this come out a year ago, it would be scoring a little higher, but in the face of a year's worth of progress in developing for next-gen systems, 'decent' is the word that best describes it.
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