Close To The Sun (PS4) Preview
I’m going to make a very big stretch and compare Close to The Sun to the PS4 exclusive, The Order 1886. Neither game shares anything when it comes to gameplay, but they do share a common thread of alternative history in the 20th century and Nikola Tesla. That’s where the connections stop, but I couldn’t help think about The Order 1886 while playing the first three chapters of Close to The Sun, which was released on PC earlier in the year, but is releasing on Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 — which I have been playing — on October 29th.
You play as Rose Archer, who after receiving a letter from her sister, Ada, aboard The Helios heads off to board the ship and find her sister. The Helios is a massive workstation for the world’s best scientists, of which Ada is, and run by Nikola Tesla, the owner of Helios, and the company Wardenclyffe which supplies power to around half the world.
Aboard The Helios, you quickly discover that something has gone horribly wrong. It’s seemingly abandoned as Rose docks at the entrance to the monstrous ship. She manages to make contact with her sister quickly though and Ada communicates that something terrible has happened on the ship. The majority of those living abroad are dead, and Ada is attempting to find a way to escape. The bloodshed soon catches up to Rose as she reaches the inner quarters and finds a massacre. But with Nikola Tesla’s voice teasing you over the P.A Rose isn’t quite sure what’s happened or who to trust. With signs of Tesla’s obsession with Thomas Edison’s potential spies, and his own sent to spy on Edison, the environmental storytelling quickly sets up the start of the 20th Century and the rivalry at the front of it. And it’s the intrigue of Close to The Sun’s story that has me most interested within the three chapters I played.
The first three chapters of Close to the Sun feel like the tutorial stages, with the third chapter ending with a set-piece introducing a killer-on-the-loose and a threat to beware of. But running is very stiff. Close to the Sun is more narrative-driven adventure game so far than an Outlast, and in this scene, I worry how much more of this will be introduced in further chapters.
I’m very keen to play more of Close to The Sun and find out more about the world, story and characters that developer Storm in a Teacup has introduced and you’ll be able to read my full review of Close to the Sun closer to its release date of the 29th of October.
(Close to The Sun code provided for preview)