First Look at Kholat by flotsam


Based on a true event known as the Dyatlov Pass Incident, Kholat plunges you into the Ural mountains, several years after the incident in which nine hikers died in distinctly bizarre circumstances. You may discover what actually occurred.

Assuming of course you can survive the snowy landscape. Arriving on a train, it is immediately apparent the environment is inhospitable. Snow and wind abound, and having tried, it is clear sheltering in the nearby town is not an option. Zip up the parka and off you go.

The game takes full advantage of the Unreal 4 engine, to create a big and realistic snowy environment. Everything comes together to produce a cold and uninviting vista. I was impressed from the get go, and I don’t even like snow.

Having reached the initial camp site, I now have a map with obvious co-ordinates to seek out. My current challenge is how to use it. It isn’t straight forward, and strikes me as being a far more realistic exercise in orienteering than many game maps. Using the topography of the environment to work out where you are seems key; then I have to master the compass.

I have wandered a tad aimlessly and found some interesting locations, and fallen off a ledge and died. Near as I can tell, I need to find other campsites in order to save, or constantly backtrack to the first one. Not being able to save at will may or may not be an issue, depending on the prevalance of events that will kill me. I have already outrun a roiling bank of a fog-like substance that clearly didn’t look like being warm and friendly.

This “first look” is because I suspect it will take me a while to complete, once I sort out that map. Right now, I am intrigued and interested, and want to play more.