Hell is Others | Windows PC Review
Hell is Others, developed by Strelka Games and published by A List Games, is a Windows PC exclusive isometric extraction horror top-down game, which is set in a PvPvE format. There is quite a lot to digest there, but trust me, it works.
Hell is Others sees the player take on the role of Adam Smithson who is simply trying his best to exist in his small apartment based in Century City. Time seems to have fallen into a state of obscurity in Century City and no longer has meaning, nor does it have a beginning or end until Adam’s new companion comes into his life - a bonsai tree that must be cared for dutifully. Like everything in Century City, the bonsai tree requires blood to survive meaning that Adam is forced to venture out into the dark streets in search of a constant supply. Adam must ride the elevator into the shadowy nightmares that live within Century City, gather blood, survive, and escape.
First and foremost, Hell is Others is incredibly unique in every sense of the word. Looking at it from a distance you wouldn’t expect this game to be what it is. If this game weren’t recommended to me as something I’d love, I would never have played it. The recommendation was so on point that I instantly jumped in and somehow despite the weirdness and oddities found within, I straight away felt at home. Hell is Others is both PVE and PVP. Practically everything found throughout your adventures in Century City will be out to kill you with monsters appearing out of the depths. Every alleyway, street or building provide different threats and creatures that lie in wait for an innocent bystander to wander along. Of course, all the monsters want is blood; the most valuable commodity found in the streets.
Alongside the monsters, you’ll also find other players lurking around trying to achieve the same goal as you - maximise profits (blood), gather resources, and feed their own bonsai tree. These other players will pose quite a threat to you early game so my biggest tip is to simply run away unless you feel strong enough to fight them. If you find yourself in a difficult altercation that you can’t fight you will be sacrificing everything that you have gathered during that trip into the city because the only way to secure the stuff that you have looted is by extracting from the city and escaping back to your apartment safely. From my experience, the biggest killer in these kinds of games is greed. There’s always that urge to just explore a little more. One more building, seek out one more objective however, from experience, just don’t do it. Just go home, cuddle up on the sofa with your bonsai tree and go to sleep. Trust me. Just do it.
One of my biggest complaints about Hell is Others is that the controls and movement can feel a little bit clunky and unnecessarily challenging in places. Initially, I put this down to my own lack of experience with top-down games, however, the more I progressed with the game and adjusted to it, the clunkier things began to feel. As the enemies I faced and the situations I was in became more challenging and more demanding, I found the limited move set to become very restrictive and slightly frustrating. I typically tried my absolute hardest to avoid real players because even if I was well equipped for a fight, I still didn’t feel like I was physically able to take it on. Thankfully because the servers weren’t MASSIVELY populated I was typically able to avoid other players on the majority of my runs. Alongside this, my next biggest complaint was that the menus were a little bit confusing and convoluted for me so it meant that looting on the fly became quite challenging and oftentimes I found myself getting jumped by a monster whilst trying to organise my inventory.
Despite these shortcomings, I really must note that they weren’t enough to sap all enjoyment from the game for me. The shortcomings of the game are easy to adapt to and for me there really was a lot more to enjoy than there was to dislike. Hell is Others is incredibly challenging and sometimes the progress, or the lack thereof, may become frustrating but persevere and you’ll begin to break the walls down. Hell is Others is exceptionally strange and exceedingly odd, providing situations that will constantly keep you guessing and wanting to play more. It is a slight diamond in the rough and there's masses of quality in there from an incredibly small studio. It’s always a pleasure to play games that surprise me because it just proves how much creativity is out there in the world and games like this make me truly excited for what new and exciting concepts will become the next big games in the future.
Lj’s Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
For more information on Hell is Others please use the following links...
Many thanks to New Tales for supplying the review code.
Hell is Others | Windows PC