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Tested on PC
Distrust is a survival strategy game, developed by Russian developer Cheerdealers. The game is inspired on John Carpenter’s The Thing. We had a chance to rescue the members of a polar expedition, read below in our review how that story ended.
Through the Icy Cold
A helicopter crashes down at an arctic base leaving the crew, consisting of two scientists, alone in a cold and dangerous area. Your job is to lead them through six zones and hopefully, help them escape. Keep your characters fed, warm and energized to aid their survival, but beware every time you sleep mysterious creatures appear, attacking the survivors. To make the difficulty even better every gameplay has randomized maps and puzzles which open the gate to the next zone, making it hard to be ready for the next map and giving the game a re-playable element.
While the randomized maps are a great addition to the game, they also hinder the players ability to adapt to the game directly, which leads to a steep learning curve. While learning the game it might not be that fun as it’s quite stressful trying to get all your characters to survive. This is more apparent in the Challenge mode, which we will talk about later. The story isn’t really visible during the game itself, besides some information you find on notes, which means the story is at its best at the beginning and the end of the game.
Click, Click and keep Clicking.
The moment you enter a new zone you will see a few buildings on the map. Some doors are already unlocked while others have to be opened by a key, picking the lock or moving away some rubble. As every building has its unique role you need to make sure to get to the right one straight away. You won’t be able to cook your meals in the sleeping cabins as you need to visit the mess hall for that. In the meantime only a few houses will have a bed to crash on.
This means you will need to visit every building, loot every crate and smash them afterwards to get everything you need for later zones. As the game itself is not difficult enough not all zones will have a place to refill your gas cans or a workbench to repair your tools. Don’t stop clicking is basically the key part of the game. And while you do, make sure to know your strategy. All this looting obviously makes your character tired – but to sleep or not too sleep, that is the question. When you decide not to sleep, different effects will happen to your characters, from hearing strange whispers to hallucinations and night vision as well as a few others.
If the adventure mode isn’t challenging enough for you there is also a challenge mode. Keep in mind that challenge mode is indeed a challenge as it changes some of the features in the game. The moment you enter a zone the buildings still show on the map but you have no clue what you will find there, or if the buildings are open or locked. Are your survivors almost starving to death and you have no food? May the luck be with you for finding the kitchen right away. Where strategy and time management was an important factor in adventure, this counts even more for the challenge mode.
Besides that it spices up the gameplay, it also gives you new ways of playing the game. There are different achievements to unlock and upon completion a new character gets unlocked. Each character has his own stats and special abilities. For example: You are able to unlock Casper Jackson, while his cold resistant is only level 1 out of 3, he brings a Toolkit with him as well as a spade and hammer which could be really useful at the beginning. Some characters don’t have anything at their inventory but are more resistant against hunger and cold. In total there are 15 characters.
As you can see achievements play a big role in getting new content for the game and it’s great to see a game using achievements at their fullest. The challenge mode also has a secret ending.
Don’t die please… not again
The game is well made, but there are some points that slightly change the experience. As first, luck plays a crucial part in the game as some actions require you to make a choice. Two options will be given to you and the moment you choose a flipping coin will decide whether the outcome is good or bad. These events don’t have a huge outcome but can be annoying at times. Secondly, don’t be surprised when your survivor cuts himself while looting a crate. “It’s just a cut”, I hear you say, but that’s not the case. Your health will slowly drop down till you find some clean bandages to stop the bleeding. And I bet you can guess, sterile bandages aren’t easy to find and the dirty ones only have a slight chance to stop the bleeding. You are able to get health back with some health kits, but saving them for a later stage might be more useful. The most annoying part about the cuts, is that it happens quite often.
Another thing is that every time you sleep, Anomalies appear in the world to harm you. Each of them has their own weakness and staying on the world hurts them. In the beginning this isn’t much of a big deal but the moment they get close to you, they do a lot of damage. With some strategy you will be able to defend yourself quite well, like luring them to a cold place and get the furnace working again. But that is easier said than done as it takes some time while the Anomaly has the chance to do damage to you. At some moments you can’t do anything as you don’t have the right tools to kill them leaving you with the only outcome: Death. But even though Anomalies might not be scary and are sometimes a pain to deal with, they’re still a fun addition to the game. While this reviews gets to its end, the developers actually updated the game, changing the graphics appearance of the Anomalies, making them look like actual unique creatures.
As last but not least, when your characters have enough of all the suffering they will fall down into a coma. The only thing you can do to save them at that moment is to inject them with an adrenalin shot, if you even have one – otherwise you will have to say goodbye. When both characters die, or three of them if you play challenge mode and rescue someone, the game is over and you will be nicely directed back to the main menu or to the create new game screen. One mistake could be the end for your gameplay so be careful as there is no saving option. The game automatically saves when you quit the game, so you won’t be able to go back to an older save.
All in all, the game has a lot to offer for the price it sells for. During our playthrough we did not encounter any bugs what so ever and everything works as it’s supposed to do. While there are some points that might turn off people, the game truly gives you a stressful survival experience.