Military first-person shooters are a dime a dozen these days. Industria by developer Bleakmill is at least taking things to slightly more uncharted territory. This game takes place in East Berlin during the eve of the Cold War. You play as a government official named Nora who is in search of her colleague who mysteriously disappeared after arriving back to her office from watching the collapse of the Berlin Wall. This ally, Walter, evidently found a way to transport into another reality and it is up to the player to find him and bring him back. This story will bring players into the belly of a deep underground military base, that is full of secret projects. Everything from time manipulation to deep space exploration. This quest will bring players into an alternate 1989 reality that will unveil the secrets of the universe.
Industria seems to be a concoction of many popular FPS’s that glimmered on players’ screens over the last twenty-five years. Everything from Medal of Honor to Half-Life is clear is an apparent inspiration to this new IP. Even though the development wrapping up, there is a potential of something rather profound being crafted here. Even though the development team of Bleakmill is rather small, there is no doubt that there is passion behind this project. It is easy to gloss over this title without giving it much thought. However, the new trailer signifies that there is much more to Industria than what meets the eye.
Players will be shifted to another dimension that is very similar to ours. The major difference between the two is the fact there are no humans around. There are only machines patrolling the premises that will attack the player on sight. The origin of this enemy is the mystery that the player must disclose. Of course, this adventure takes place within Berlin after the collapse of the Berlin wall. Even though the city looks fundamentally the same, it has been warped to look much more broken down and slightly more alien. The machines that roam the streets are similar to what was seen in the fields on Horizon: Zero Dawn. They come with sensors that will turn red when they spot you. Once they do, they’ll charge the player for an attack. The weapons used in Industria appear to be outdated, which reflects the desperation of Nora’s situation. The weaponry seems to be synonymous with the weapons found with World War II FPS’s like Call of Duty: Big Red One.
It appears that guns like the Sten MK II and Beretta are among the selection to use. It is not known if there could potentially be outlandish weapons to brandish. It is a good bed that there is, considering that this alternate dimension clearly has superior technology available. Given that Nora uses equipment like a pickaxe for melee attacks and a lantern for light is an interesting juxtaposition of the environment around her. The story of this game will be rather nuanced in terms of revealing information. Nora will come with a journal that will update throughout the course of her adventure. Players can find audiotapes and written entries that will help the player digest what is going on within this strange new world. It functions very similar to Arthur Morgan’s journal in Red Dead Redemption 2.
Secrets of The Universe
The environment is highly interactive. Nora can touch and grab pretty much anything throughout the levels. The level of interactivity seems to be about the same as a standard survival horror game like Amnesia. Even though the action is the backbone of this IP, it is also peppered with puzzles. These puzzles will focus on physical manipulation of the environment, like unblocking a door or find the correct keycard. Things like this will be required to pass onto the next segment throughout the campaign of Industria. This is strictly a single-player game with no co-op or a multiplayer option to speak of. Surprisingly, the level design seems to be rather vast that is brimming with places to explore and scavenge. Plus, the music in this game comes with synthesizers and vocals that give it a melancholic feel to the world.
Yes, scavenging will be paramount in Industria. Ammunition is scarce and players will constantly need to keep their inventory full. This is also true with the lantern since it will need oil to stay lit. Threats will come in all manners throughout Nora’s adventure. Dog-like sentinals lurk the streets and there are even booby traps intertwined throughout the level layouts. Thus, platforming will be an occasional occurrence. Nora will need to leap and jump across the gnarled buildings that are punctured with holes and debris. Lastly, there are titans stomping down the roads of Berlin, scouring the area for intruders. Something that is somewhat similar to War of the Worlds, although this particular one is more bi-pedal. Industria is packed with a dense atmosphere and nail-biting action. In terms of this game’s overall design, it is reminiscent of Half-Life in many ways. Considering that Nora is just a common person who is thrown into an extraordinary situation, she has the potential to be the next Gordon Freeman. Everything from a secret government facility, alien threats, and old-fashioned level design is a clear indicator of what Industria is striving for. Which is a classic video game experience that is hard to find today with the slew of multiplayer-focused IPs flooding the market.
Peeling Back The Shadow
Industria has come a long way since its original gameplay reveal a year ago. Even though it’s an action game, it is, even more, a mystery. It appears to be a slow-paced affair where players will need to carefully tread the levels and manage their inventory. In a strange way, it looks to be a little more laid back than its kin. There is plenty of hyperactive, high-octane shooters in the market today. Industria seems to be something a little more cerebral and refreshing. Expect Industria to be released for the PC on September 30.