System Shock, Outcast 2, Give us Mars… 6 sci-fi games to remember

Game News System Shock, Outcast 2, Give us Mars… 6 sci-fi games to remember

Genre overrepresented at Gamescom 2022, science fiction is clearly back in full force. Here are 6 games seen at the show that caught our attention.

Along with horror, science fiction is the big trend at Gamescom 2022. Whether in the stars, on Earth or under water, the atmosphere is the one expected at the biggest video game fair in Europe and we see a lot of interesting games on this theme. Here is a selection of six games with good “SF” flavor that caught our attention.

With the development of many years, the remake of the first System Shock released in 1994 is finally on the right track, although the exact date is not yet known. That being said, we had the opportunity to test the title of Nightdive Studios for half an hour and we must admit that we are rather assured. In the shoes of a hacker who must invest in a space base taken by the evil AI Shodan, you have to check the corridors and offices, in an anxiety-provoking situation at best. First and foremost an FPS, with a bit of infiltration and hacking, System Shock has a graphic style that is half-modern, half-retro, very pleasing to the eye and offers great combat sensations. The “old” interface is reminiscent of the first Deus Ex, but there are many ergonomic options that make the experience pleasant. We now hope that the adventure is not so linear and that the script has some surprises in store for us.


Unveiled during Opening Night Live, Scars Above seems at first glance to be an uninspired rip-off of Returnal. But holding Gamescom allowed us to remove our doubts and we discovered a pleasant title to get in the hand, very classic in the background, but still offers some interesting ideas. In the shoes of a young scientist whose ship crashes on an unknown planet, you have to find your surviving crew and try to survive in hostile lands. The title is presented as a TPS in semi-open areas, however the possibility of scanning the fauna and flora to learn more and unlock more situations. Visually, the set is clean, especially a beautiful artistic direction, but the less stiff animations betray all the same “AA” features of this production. Despite everything, the demo turned out to be a pleasant browsing, thanks mainly to the well-felt dialogues and a very kind “environmental analysis” aspect.


This is the least “science fiction” game in this selection, but we include it all the same thanks to the bias of the alternative history of the 70’s where retro technologies rub shoulders with advanced AI and robots . And then, it must be said, Under the Waves was one of our big favorites from Gamescom, so we dedicated a full preview to it.
. To sum up, this game developed by Parallel Studio (White Night) and published by Quantic Dream puts us in the shoes of a diver who works for an oil company. In the middle of the North Sea, he had to explore the depths with his bathyscaphe and live in a base located in the depths, completely alone, with the possibility of communicating by radio. The title is very narrative, with a lot of exploration (it’s a “small” open world) and a lot of mysteries to solve. A psychological thriller with an SF hue, Under the Waves seduces us with its suggestiveness, as well as its visual and acoustic atmosphere.


Like Alone in the Dark on the horror side, Outcast 2 is a project to resurrect a cult PC game from the 90s, one of the first open-world games and a title that, at the time, impressed in its technology. Meanwhile, open world games are exploding and this sequel will have to fight hard to keep pace. Still developed by the Belgian studio Appeal, Outcast 2 is not a big production (40 people worked on it), but its presentation at Gamescom reassures us on several points. Apparently, the planet Adelpha still has a lot of charm. Very colorful and full of plants, it is reminiscent of Avatar’s Pandora. It is here in this small paradise that we reunite Cutter Slade, who must help the natives in the face of the rising dictatorship. We are promised here an “organic” open world unlike the amusement parks of Ubisoft games. There are no activity markers all over the place, but the will to push the player to discover things for himself. A strong link with wildlife will also be possible, thanks to a system of investigation of animals on the planet, which should lead to wonderful possibilities, such as the creation of a flying creature of its own field The appeal is clearly wanting to do it right in Outcast 2 and it shows. Give them time to police their child.


The Sequel to Deliver us the Moon released in 2019, Deliver us Mars sets its action on the Red Planet, where we play as a young woman looking for her missing father. The first title is very narrative, with a lot of exploration and the desire to reproduce the lunar scenes as faithfully as possible. This sequel continues the same proposition, however with more variety of gameplay promised to us, including puzzle and platform stages. We experienced this during a 30-minute hold where we climbed steep Martian walls with customized ice axes. The joystick triggers must be used to position its arms properly to avoid fatal falls. Then came an environmental puzzle based on electric pillars to be placed correctly in two rooms, to activate a circuit that can open an elevator. A fairly classic puzzle, but well done, in the vein of The Talos Principle. Grant us Mars is still very mysterious, however, and this brief overview only makes us want to see more.


Abyssals

A management/survival game published by Shiro Unlimited (Dune Spice War, Wartales) and developed by OverPowered Games, Abyssals puts us in control of a group of people who want to inhabit a whole new planet. The only “small” problem: it is completely made up of water. So it is in the depths that one installs its first feeding systems and its first hearths, in the hope that its colony will survive as long as possible. We have made a 30-minute presentation on the title that presents the main principles of the game. The key is the distribution of energy and the importance of establishing electrical circuits between all the buildings, while making sure to produce enough electricity for everyone to work properly. Light also plays an important role, and any colonized area that falls into darkness will be attacked by creatures from the depths. Managing production chains, balancing the placement of buildings, crisis management… We must be present in all fields and always have tension. The game is not expected for many months and so we have time to talk about it.


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