Imagine waking up in an unknown place. There is no one else around and the only form of communication is via someone watching you with a satellite. They inform you that you need to find yourself a weapon to protect you, this weapon is on a dead body – a previous ‘survivor’ who was unfortunate enough to meet there demise at the hand of the Noct.
This is the premise for Noct, a top down 2D survival horror game developed by C3SK. The world as you once knew has ended and in its place are nightmarish monsters that lurk in the dark.
Your aim is to survive by scrounging for weapons, food and water – all of which are in pretty short supply, whilst also trying to uncover the origins of the Noct. The overwatch will help you with this by providing you with waypoints to follow that will lead you to various points across the map to carry out tasks.
Right now Noct is in very early access. There isn’t a whole lot to do beyond the first few missions – which took me around an hour (this included dying quite a few times). But the idea for the game is great and I think it has a lot of potential to be a real gem.
Visually, whilst the game is very minimalist in terms of graphics with its thermal imaging view from the satellite, it still looks really good and manages to set a pretty good scene of a post-apocalyptic world. Plus the sound design is fantastic. All the guns have a muted effect on them (because you’re ‘watching’ from afar) which I think sounds really cool. The music is tense and unnerving at all the right times.
The controls are pretty easy to pick up. I was playing using a controller and it works like pretty much every other twin stick shooter – one stick to move, one to aim, use the triggers to shoot and bumper to melee. Beyond that, there isn’t really much else to it apart from access the map, which I found that it was pretty easy to get disorientated when using. That was because the satellite rotates – which I didn’t realise at first, this means that when looking at the map you can quite easily get confused when everything looks completely different to a couple of minutes ago. I actually liked this though I thought it added something new and different to the game. Although I do believe that they’re adding in the option to disable this too. So if you don’t like it you’ll be able to turn it off.
But the best part of the game has to be the monsters. When any are nearby your screen will go a little darker and you character will let out a little ‘Uh Oh’. Sometimes they will pop out, sometimes they won’t. Whilst you have a top down view of what’s going on, your line of sight works based on what your character would be able to see. So if you’re standing on the corner of a building, you won’t be able to see what’s on the other side of it. This is when Noct provides some of its best scares, when your surrounded by rubble and buildings and all of a sudden a monster 10 times the size of you pops out and starts chasing you down.
I’ve actually done a play through on my YouTube channel if you want to check it out!
Along with running around in the desolate wasteland on your own, there is also the option of doing it with other players in the world too. I haven’t actually been able to play any multiplayer as of right now, but from what I’ve read and heard it’s basically the same, just with the addition of possibly encountering other players.
As I’ve said already, there isn’t really too much to do in the game right now, but the game is only £6.99 on steam, which isn’t too bad. Plus the team are constantly working on additions to the game and will be adding more content over the next few months and I had a blast during my play through of it. I feel like it’s a worthwhile investment.
Noct has a lot of potential to be a great survival horror game. Let’s just hope that it can reach that potential and not get lost in some development early access hole.