Ever wonder what it would be like to fight for survival in the middle of the Amazon? I try not to, but Creepy Jar has now made that possible without having to leave the comfort of my air conditioning! Ladies and Gents let me introduce to you the psychological thriller that will test your gaming survival skills, Green Hell.
Green Hell follows Jake, who recently wrote a book about a tribe in the Amazon that has yet to have been contacted by the modern world, going with his wife Mia to make contact with the tribe as Mia can speak the language. 30 days into the expedition, something goes wrong and Jake is alone and lost in the jungle with little to no memory of what caused his accident while fleeing from the tribe.
Now onto the game itself! When it comes to the game’s controls, they can be a bit tricky, you can tell the game was originally made for PC before the port to console (I’m playing on Xbox One). Luckily there’s a tutorial level at the start of the game that gives a quick breakdown of how the controls work before dropping you into the fire and learn more on your own.
The sound is really good, you will definitely need stereo headphones for this one, especially if you’re hunting OR trying not to be hunted. Thankfully there’s a full audio list that you can adjust in the options in case any of the sounds get a bit annoying/loud. The game’s art and light engine are really great, just wish there was more smoothness to the textures and some of the animation but other than that, it’s really well done.
Overall gameplay is pretty good. In the game you have to collect resources to build tools, shelters, and other necessities in order to survive the harsh environment, that’s where your notebook comes in to help you with what you can build.
You can also find food in the game but it will go bad in your inventory so you have to collect sparingly. There are many unknown flowers, nuts, mushrooms, and fruits in the game that you don’t know what they will do…till you try them.
You have a watch that shows your health levels so you can focus on what you want to improve during your adventure. There’s also a mechanic in the game that allows you to check over your limbs for injuries that you have to care for in order to keep your health and sanity as some untreated ailments will affect how you play.
The one thing I don’t like about the game is the map. The map does not really show where YOU are on the map when you look, you have to use the GPS on your watch and line them up on the map to pinpoint where you are. I know that sounds dumb but in a game where getting lost is easy and resources dwindle quickly and Jake always seems to be tired, the map should show where you are at least if the difficulty level is low, which brings me to the next thing.
The game has a unique difficult setting system where you can customize your own experience or make it a living hell for yourself. I’m thinking of going back and changing my difficulty to the lowest setting as I died so much and you can only load where you saved which is only available where you build shelter, which is another thing I don’t like, you can only save at your shelter, there’s no autosave or manual save, it’s strictly at your shelter. As I said before, you get lost easily in this game, and you’re pretty much forced to build a new shelter all the time as you don’t know where the danger comes from next.
Overall, my experience playing Green Hell was pretty good with some of the issues I’ve had listed above where even in easy difficulty, the game is pretty unforgiving and is an exploration/story kind of guy, it makes it hard to enjoy the game’s lore when I’m dying all the time. Then again this might be the kind of game suited for those that love games like The Forest, but with a bit more personal care needed for the main character (also forgot to mention that you can get sick from not washing your own hands), a seriously unforgiving game.
If you want to challenge your virtual survival skills or want to give these kinds of games a try, Green Hell lives up to its name and you should give it a look, if you don’t like a game where you have to keep your character alive in a world that’s trying to kill him right from the start, I think you should pass on it. Either way, with the survival system, story (from what I’m able to see of it), custom difficulty, good art and sound, and a challenge fitting for the summer season, Green Hell scores big but with some of the issues with the easiest settings having unnecessary difficulty, the score is affected a bit. Green Hell is a 7.5/10.
Green Hell is out now for PlayStation 4, and Xbox One