So, here we are. Capcom's third installment of the Lost Planet series sees us returning to the planet of E.D.N. III once again. This time around our story takes place before the events of the first game of the series, returning the planet to its original frozen form.
Lost Planet 3 presents us with a new protagonist this time around with Jim Peyton. Jim, a colonist who's working to make ends meet for his family back home, is sent to E.D.N. III to help the NEVEC company mine and ship resources, mainly Thermal Energy, back to Earth.
The game features a lot more story than the previous titles, which is actually a nice change, and even presents you with some optional side missions and the ability to talk to random NPCs around the bases. Throughout your play through you will uncover the secrets revolving around the NEVEC company, who as you may remember were the main antagonists in the original game, as well as throwing a host of the ravenous insect-like akrid at you. Peyton's own personal story is also explained through constant video logs with his family back home.
The games core mechanics are fairly solid. The shooter elements of the game is very basic and manages to carry itself without too many problems. You get a hand full of different weapons to choose from to mow down your enemies. All the basics like your pistol, an assault rifle, shotgun and more. There is also a very basic cover system in the game to present you with a some what trivial means of taking shelter. To be honest, this is all really generic stuff.
I would say the game spends 50% of its time on foot with the above shooter mechanics and the rest of the time you're lumbering around in your big ass mechanized RIG. This time around your RIG has virtually no offensive weaponry. It's original intent was that of a mining machine, complete with a drill and grabby-claw hand. Despite not having any traditional weapons, the RIG can smash, grab, and drill enemies to a pulp, injecting some variety to the combat of the game. Without spoiling anything, some of the boss encounters make pretty cool use of the RIGs combat system and provide some neat encounters.
Lost Planet 3's multiplayer is also pretty lackluster. The game offers various forms of team based objective games and survival mode type games. While not horrible, the online portion of the game is pretty glitchy and in need of some patch work. Those things aside, it's more of the same generic online that companies keep trying to cram into games better left to campaign only.
The graphics of the game are a huge improvement over the past games. Currently running on the ever so popular Unreal-Engine, Lost Planet 3 presents a very decent game visually. While nothing awe inspiring on the level of Crysis 3 type visuals, the graphics aren't too shabby. However while playing I did run into quite a bit of glitches, including a lot of getting stuck in invisible objects and falling through the ground...
The sounds and voice acting are also very bland and generic, never really presenting anything extraordinary. One cool thing that I liked however was that you could play your own music playlist inside your RIG, rather than listening to the hillbilly jams of the games default list that Jim plays.
Overall, the game is very average. It's a decent addition to the series and is at least worth a rent. It's solid enough to be worth playing, but doesn't inspire you enough to HAVE to play it. The game is pretty short and quite easy. Even on the hardest difficulty level, the game is still easy, presenting only a few annoying encounters along the way.
The achievements are pretty easy and straight forward. A large chunk of the achievements are freebies in the way of story-related unmissable achievements. On your road to 100% you will tackle a few collectible achievements, achievements for upgrading your gear and RIG, creating a bestiary, and a good chunk of multiplayer achievements. Pretty standard issue stuff...
In conclusion -
Story - 3.5 / 5
Online - 3.5 / 5
Graphics - 4 / 5
Sounds - 3 / 5
Fun - 4 / 5
Achievements - 3.5 / 5
Playability - 3.5 / 5
Average game. Decent addition for fans of the series. Nothing that makes you just have to play it.