Dark Matter - PC

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Dark Matter (PC)
Requires: Mouse, Keyboard
Also for: PC
Viewed: 2.5D Side-on, Scrolling Genre:
Adventure: Survival Horror
Shoot 'Em Up
Media: DVD (also on Download) Arcade origin:No
Developer: InterWave Studios Soft. Co.: InterWave Studios
Publishers: Iceberg (GB)
Released: 25 Oct 2013 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 12+


Female protagonist + Creepy Science-Fictional Setting + Nasty Alien Parasites = Dark Matter. Well, not just Dark Matter, but that's what we're interested in here. And the fact that the formula has a pedigree with the likes of Alien is hardly a bad thing, is it?

Developer Interwave has been quite explicit about seeing the game as a spiritual descendant of Metroid, so that gives you a taste of what you're getting here. You awake in a vast spaceship that's all but gone dark and are informed by an AI that you're pretty much the last attempt at reviving one of the crew to try to... well, your chances of achieving anything of great note in this environment don't look great, but survival would be a nice start.

It's been 70 years since the ship you're on disappeared and it's now practically dead in the water and ridden with alien parasites. You've been in cryosleep for much of that, but there seems to be something worse out there, referred to in found log entries as 'angels'.

As with Metroid, the game is a sidescrolling shooter with platforming elements, exploration and bleak overtones.

It's got a distinct note of survival-horror, too. Light and dark play crucial roles in your survival. Certain enemies respond to light, others lie dormant in it. Not that there's much light to be found in the dying ship you're roaming the guts of. Of course, when you run into both enemy sorts you've got problems.

Another gameplay aspect that contributes to the survival horror vibes is ammo scarcity. You have a pistol with an infinite supply of the stuff, but beyond that there are multiple types of ammunition to be crafted for each weapon, and there are multiple weapons to be acquired.

What the game does particularly well is atmosphere. Doom drips off the screen. The aforementioned mood-lighting is a big help. So is the eerie, minimal soundtrack.

If you're looking for a creepy game with a dash of nostalgia to crawl round the guts of, InterWave has you covered.


Dark Matter - PC Artwork

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09 Jul 2013