Are you tired of zombies? Well have we got a game for you! Shattered Skies is a game by Free Reign Entertainment who have taken the gaming conventions and totally turned them on their head by making an open world MMO PVP survival game, but with aliens! Shattered Skies has all the features you know and are bored of with various other zombie survival games but just added aliens. So exciting!
Shattered Skies has you play in a post apocalyptic world where the moon has been destroyed by a comet which has crashed to Earth, and have for some reason turned into crystals and now aliens are attacking. For some reason. Yeah, the game doesn’t concern itself with scientifically accurate or compelling storytelling, beyond giving a half assed reason as to why aliens are attacking you. No, Shattered Skies all about the gameplay of surviving.
The game boasts a “massive persistent open world”, what this means is a decent sized map with towns, outposts and trees in it. While the map is a good size it is populated by very little. The world has one environment: trees and the cities have a limited number of building types, all in similar states of disrepair and varies different type of cars littering the place. Graphically it looks good enough, but isn’t visually interesting, it does its job well enough without doing anything spectacular or interesting.
Your job as the player is to search the map looking for things to protect yourself from the aliens and the other players, choosing from a variety of pistols, shotguns and machine guns that you can assign as your primary or secondary weapon slots. All very standard for the genre, along with everyone's favourite survival game mechanic; food and water meters, yay! Yes, as well as surviving your fellow players and annoyance of aliens you also have to battle your hunger and thirst because everyone enjoys that and while this was a feature added to make surviving a zombie apocalypse that little bit more tense in Shattered Skies it feels like they just added it because that's what was expected of them because it is not a tense game, it is much more of a shooty bang bang game.
The reason why Shattered Skies is much more gun focused than other survival games is because of the aliens you have to fight. For some reason the aliens have two health bars you have to shoot down as well as being able to shoot orbs at you from their … something. The game doesn’t make it clear where the orbs come from, I assume the same place the aliens come from, which is out of nowhere! One way zombie survival games have tension is through having to sneak around, trying to keep out of sight of the zombies to be able to get the rations you need to survive, in Shattered Skies sneaking is pointless because at any moment the aliens will just teleport a few metres from you and attack. No warning, just boom, alien and you either have to waste your ammo on killing it or running away. There’s no tension, just running around shooting.
Where Shattered Skies gets good is the PVP element. Sneaking round area, hunting down your prey actually gets tense and fun, however Shattered Skies has a few barriers to this being what you’ll spend your time doing. Firstly while I have been playing the servers have been very sparsely populated, to the point that people will put on chat where they are in order for the few people playing the game while be able to find them and actually participate in a fun activity. Secondly while you are trying to find enough ammo to fight in PVP you will continuously have aliens spawning in your face leaving you to either waste your ammo or leave empty handed. Yes, the aliens, the main point of the game, becomes nothing more than a pointless hindrance. They destroy any form of tension and stop you from playing the actually enjoyable part of the game. Well done Free Reign Entertainment.
Combat itself isn’t anything spectacular. Usual first/third person shooter affaire; Move with wsda, look around with mouse, aim with right click, shoot with left. Nothing new but works well enough. It also has obstacles you can place around you to damage and mildly hinder the enemies, as well as an obligatory crafting system to build more traps, the higher level you are the more you can craft. All standard, nothing new but it works well. When you die you get respawned with only the basic starter kit, all the things you’ve scavenged lost. While you could find it again, chances are anything decent will have been looted.
Shattered Skies is a pretty standard, mediocre, middle of the road survival game with aliens. A game that I could recommend you pick up as long as you have some friends to jump on with you, waste an hour or two hunting each other down then forget about until you need to delete some stuff to make room for more porn or new games. Unfortunately what stops me from being able to make this recommendation is the price. At the moment of writing it is £21.99 for the base, no thrills game. This is way too much for a game so basic, lacking in any form of thrill or longevity. If it were no more than £5 I’d be able to recommend it, but not at over £20! There is nothing here that justifies this price, let alone the Ultimate Edition which is £72.99! All you you get in the special editions is some skins and start off at a higher level, a level that just lets you use certain guns and craft certain things. Things that you will lose in death. As such I can only recommend this game to someone who enjoyed Day-Z but wished it had aliens. Do not waste your money, if you want a shooter to play with friends wait for Battlefield 1!
Shattered Skies (Reviewed on Windows)
Minor enjoyable interactions, but on the whole is underwhelming.
An average game that does what it does well, however a price tag way too high, low populated servers and annoying enemies means I can not in good conscience recommend this to anyone. Avoid this game!