Sprinting is quite limited and, if you use sprint to it’s full extent, will leave you moving very slowly and not being able to see clearly. Therefore you really need to use sprint scarcely in case you get chased by anything.
What chases you? I still don’t know but they’re scary bastards! They look like shadowy figures that walk around in the dark and leave behind glowing orange footprints. If you get too close, they’ll give chase and not stop until you’ve either outrun them, or they catch you and end your life. Sound effects alert you to when there’s one nearby, and also if it’s started chasing you, or disappeared because you outran it.
There’s no way to defeat them because you are completely unarmed except for a torch. “Maybe the torch can shine some light on what they are?” I hear you ask. Nope… Shine the torch on them and they’ll get slightly annoyed. Well not really slightly, more like pissed off to the extent that they chase and kill you.
Kholat is powered by Unreal Engine 4, giving us incredibly high quality graphics. For an environment that is completely covered by a blizzard you’d think there’s not much point to be so detailed, but IMGN.PRO have done an incredible job with giving us such an HD mountain to explore!
Sound-wise, the howling blizzard screaming all round you whilst in the mountains never becomes repetitive and keeps your ears pricked up for other sounds, such as rustling paper, which indicates a note is nearby.
Sean Bean even makes an appearance as the narrator of the story. Every now and then you’ll reach an area where Sean pipes in with his two cents worth of narration. It’s very comforting to hear a familiar voice when you’re up to your knees in snow at a place where a group of people went nuts. But his words aren’t very comforting…
Kholat is a true adventure game, placing you in a deserted mountain with only a map, compass and torch. I love that you don’t have a minimap because it forces you to use your noggin and work out where you are with only the few tools at your disposal.
Finishing Kholat one hundred percent will take around four to six hours depending on how generous you are with sprinting. There’s a good lot of achievements to unlock, so completionists may take an extra hour or so finding out how to unlock them.
I absolutely love the graphics, sound effects and narration by Sean Bean and had an absolute blast sh*tting myself by playing at midnight with little light source. I can’t wait to get back in and find the rest of the hair-raising reports to get a better idea of what transpired during the Dyatlov Pass Incident.
4 stars – an incredible an unnerving experience in the Ural Mountains of Russia