Lifeless Planet is a game well worth playing, surely one of the best Indie games I have played this year. It had a successful Kickstarter and passed through Greenlight to go to Early Access and to be released as completed game.
Its made by Stage 2 Studios which consists mainly of David Board, and the game is the outcome of years of passionate hard work, while it utilized all the stages an Indie project can pass through, till its released on Steam.
This game is a unique work of art that inspires and entertains with its beautiful visuals and its story, unlike anything you can find in big budget titles. Words hardly can express the accomplishments this game reached. Its a Sci-Fi Story Adventure comparable to the books of Isaac Asimov or Games like The Dig.
The atmosphere is carrying this game. It makes you feel lost, helpless and afraid, even sad and isolated, but then again it evokes curiosity, hope and amazement. It has very little action but a lot of exploring and platforming and a bit of quite easy puzzling. Its pretty linear, but that's to be expected from a game that tries to tell a story I guess. There could be a bit more to do in some parts of the game.
I will not reveal anything of the story, its yours to discover for yourself, because that's what the game is about. But I can assure you that it is very much worth it, if you have an open mind and search for something meaningful that you can enjoy without feeling pressured. It will take you around 5 hours for a playthrough. This is not a game for the impatient or simpleminded tough, those players will get bored or fail to grasp the storyline.
If there's one thought that I had while playing it, it was that the more you think you know about the world and the universe, the more you discover what you actually don’t know. The Storyline and ending is partly open to interpretation. Its not very strictly explained, which gives room for your own imagination. A freedom very few games ever trust the player with, and therefore it has to be complimented on such bravery.
The technical aspects of the game are robust for such a small team, reasonable performance, hardly any bugs, no crashes for me. I had to restart a level because something to advance the story didn't trigger first time, but that wasn't really a problem. Controls where fine for me with KB & Mouse, jumping around with the jetpack is a lot of fun. Gamepads are supported.
The graphical style is fitting for the game, although the way its done, also means that its looking pretty simple at times. Its definitely not a Crysis, but the aesthetics and level design make up a lot for it and make the game nonetheless a pleasure to explore and screenshot. It also has nice particle effects like dust, and the levels have a great variety of environments.
The musical score and sound is very good also, it really works well in combination with the storyline to emphasize important moments and add tension to the game. The voice acting is great, there are native Russian speakers who did the voiceovers and this makes this aspect really shine.
In conclusion I can say this game is well worth its price. The game has to be played and developers like these have to be supported. Buy and play this game, so we hopefully see more of this studio!