One thing that many of us enjoy are space stories. Stories of distant planets and the life that may or may not be found there. One thing that many of us don’t enjoy is when things don’t go according to plan. Lifeless Planet: Premier Edition is a story of both of those things as a team of astronauts embark on a journey to a far away planet to hopefully begin new life there. They are put into a deep sleep as it takes them years to reach this planet but when the ship finally arrives it takes a hard landing.
You the player wake up playing as one of the astronauts and find that you are alone with none of your crew in sight. Not only that but you are running out of oxygen in your suit and need to quickly find a way to refill it. Yeah this trip has started out wonderfully indeed. You take control by moving with the analog stick and using the X button to jump. Not far ahead in the game you come across a drop pod that refills your oxygen. You can now explore this planet and that is mostly what the game is about. There is no combat to speak of in the game and you’ll be spending most of your time walking/running around and doing some platforming bits as well. Not far into the game however you come across a town which then begs the question: Weren’t we suppose to be the first humans here? Indeed there were other humans here before and you’ll find notes and journals scattered about telling their story of how they got here and what happened to them.
The game is around 19 chapters long depending on how much exploring you do could take you different amounts of time to finish. My first time through I searched for as many collectables as I could find and it took me around 5-6 hours to finish it. On my second time through I was able to beat it in around 2 hours. I mentioned earlier that there is no combat at all in this game but there are ways you can die. You can run out of air, fall from too great a height, get killed by a tornado, or have a plant impale you. So yes you best have your wits about you so you don’t get this poor astronaut killed. The game can take awhile to get going but the story does get more interesting the further you get into it. The different areas you come across in the game also help keep things interesting whether it be a volcano like area or some hot springs.
The soundtrack in the game is pretty well done and is pretty moody and dreadful at times as well. Voice acting is present and is done well although it’s pretty much only your character talking most of the time. There is an occasional voice of a woman that you hear him talking to in a flashback but other than that no others. Sound effects in the game however are not great and could have used more time. Going back to the gameplay parts of Lifeless Planet I want to talk a little about the jetpack you have in the game. You can use it to give you an extra little boost to your jumps but that is pretty much how it functions. You can find red cans around that will give you the ability to use a few more extra boosts in a row rather than the one. This allows you to make jumps that are further away and plays a big part in the platforming sections of the game.
However this is where another one of the faults of the game show up. The controls aren’t as great as they could be. The platforming in particular can be frustrating at times as sometimes he just doesn’t jump as high or as far at first as he does other times. This led to a lot of deaths on my part. The game isn’t hard and you’ll be able to finish it just fine but if you’re trying to go after trophies it can be a problem. The game has around 16 trophies and some of them require you to finish the game without dying and beat the game under 4 hours. Some of the trophies have bugs and the no death trophy will require you to do it in one sitting without dying. If you restart from checkpoint it will void it as well. Hopefully these issues will be fixed in a patch but who knows. Another thing I didn’t like was that several times I found myself kind of lost and unsure what to do or where to go. I always found my way after awhile but usually it was at the cost of 10-20 minutes of wasted time.
To quickly touch up on it if you’ve played Lifeless Planet on PC or Xbox One already it’s pretty much the same game here. The PS4 version has improved lighting and shaders and runs on a different engine then those other versions. Your astronaut also has improved textures on his spacesuit but it can be hard to notice since the camera is so far away from you. Other than those things this is the same lifeless planet that you may have explored on the other versions.
If you’re looking for a enjoyable exploration game on a distant planet then you may want to check this one out. The story is very interesting and the planet is fun to explore even if the controls don’t always do what you want them to. However the price tag is kind of high for something you can finish in a few hours and if you want something with more action than you better avoid this as action is not what Lifeless Planet: Premier Edition is about. If none of that bothers you than by all means come explore this Lifeless Planet.
*Review copy provided by the publisher.