Welcome to Amaluuk research station, we hope your stay is a productive and pleasant one.
Overall this wasn't bad! I loved it actually. I found myself scared, sitting on the edge of my seat, fully immersed in the story. The story was decent, but the ending was abrupt and the gameplay was somewhat slow, short, and anticlimatic. The puzzles forced you to think, giving it a Penumbra Style to The Thing. A more "Tangible" Monster along with a Psychological Twist would be better, but the "Black Snow" was good. I like the ability to search the deceased (or are they?) inhabitants' laptops, giving you background information, allowing you to piece together what happened. A portable light source would be better than annoying HL2 Flares, like a flashlight, but it needs batteries? The immersion cell should've had more of a role than it did, but I enjoyed it. If we could get a DLC of the Prologue prior to Prometheus's Insertion or continue the story in the boots of John Matsuda. I believe this mod deserves a 9/10 for delivering a unique Survival Horror Experience. It was well worth the wait!
The Amaluuk Research Station is a seemingly lifeless place: one that would be creepy to explore in perfectly normal circumstances. The fact that you have just seen, in an opening cutscene, the death of several soldiers to an unseen entity lifts it beyond that however. The facility may seem lifeless but you know that is just a façade: there is something in there with you and it is going to kill you.
Couple that feeling with the atmosphere Black Snow creates out of eerie ambient sounds and, occasionally, brilliant set design and you get a game that can chill you to the bone. The low visibility of the bitter cold tundra that separates the game's many rooms, increases this feeling, making you feel isolated and vulnerable: especially as staying in the misty tundra too long causes your life to fall.
Black Snow is fundamentally a puzzler in the vain of the old Point and Click Adventures. You collect items in a scavenger hunt fashion and then combine these items with each other or the environment to proceed. A Monster provides some survival horror elements but that would be more fun to discover on your own, I will say that it doesn't do much to please you and will probably feel an afterthought. The puzzling can be weak at times: it is often not intuitive enough and it can cause a great deal of frustration.
There is a lot to enjoy in Black Snow and the few hours that you will spend playing it are definitely worth the download.
I wrote a long review explaining everything I liked, disliked then my Chrome crashed and I lost my review. I am now too lazy to fully re-write it so I will just do a basic one.
The intro was great and original
The Puzzle/Interaction system was great and fresh.
The atmosphere was unique.
The "Monster" was the first monster ive seen in a video game that I was truly afraid of throughout the entirety of the game.
The Detail in the various locations such as random notes, or person affects really helped immerse me into the game.
The intro was good, but also left a lot of questioning, the only thing I got from what was happening was that, Im in the arctic and "**** Happened"
The Puzzles sometimes were very blunt and the items you could use were not always so obvious, such as the blow torch.
--- Over all I definitely think it was one of the better horror mods made in source in a long time, I definitely think people should play this if they enjoy scary games and want something new and fresh to play.
Im giving this one a 7 based on my play-through, after spending some time trying to just get it to work, i managed to complete it in 2 hours.
+ Excellent use of the source engine and HL elements
+ Excellent implementation of modder created models
+ A grade atmosphere and survival horror tension
+ Start & End Animations are flawless, aswell as trigger events.
+ Stunning Visuals and Sound
- The conclusion
- The Performance issues (while this isnt related to the gameplay, spending 1.5 hours trying to find work arounds and even having to put up with texture glitches for the game to run is irritating)
- The Story Progression & Back Story (Im a nut for that kind of thing and saw alot of missed opportunities to expand in this area)
Overall this was an awesome mod for what it is, and i thank the developers for their time and effort in producing it and would gladly recommend it to others
Black Snow isn't one of your average horror games or mods. Not like FEAR, not like Silent Hill. It offers a different perspective from the eyes of a crewmember sent to repair a 'communications' disruption along with their team. In the not too distant future, you find yourself being hunted by a strange form of alien life, and seperated from your small crew. You are forced to find and gather supplies in order to continue pushing further. Your light is your only hope of survival. The cold isn't the only thing that can kill you. The soundtracks are quite well composed, the mapping is superior and the plot follows the script. I would have paid at least half-price if at all for this.