Green Hell is a survival game for survival game enthusiasts and as such it’ll take every opportunity it can to hand your ass to you. If you’ve ever played a real survival game from the last 10 years or so then you basically know what to expect here you will be dropped into a hazardous world with a handful of metrics to manage, terrain to familiarize yourself with, resources to gather and of course plenty of antagonistic forces to contend with.
Every move you make in Green Hell needs to be purposeful and calculated so while its requirements of you are fairly simple in nature they’re not by any means easy to achieve by design, there will almost always be something going horribly wrong, maybe you’re away from your camp but also become so thirsty that you’re forced to drink dirty water to buy you some time which will almost certainly result in you ending up with internal parasites which will also have to be dealt with so for every problem you solve there will almost always be a new one created, this is how survival games work but it’s particularly intense in Green Hell both in terms of the speed at which things can deteriorate and the sheer amount of variables to keep a constant eye on, in a way it can feel like this particular breed of hardcore survival game can conflict with the idea of progressing through a narrative, given that my hands were always so full of problems that required immediate attention. It was hard to carve out short moments where I actually felt confident enough to move the story forward all of this is of course even more pronounced in the beginning, as the short training section at the start does very little to initiate you to the game’s numerous facets and how they impact each other, none of this is necessarily what i would call a flaw in an objective sense as your personal appetite for punishment and hardcore survival situations will profoundly affect how much fun this sort of thing ends up being for you.
Green Hell’s difficulty could certainly be seen as one of its stronger qualities especially for the right players, I seriously doubt that wasting precious time fumbling around with incoherent menu systems while my health continues to decline is the inferno that the developer intended, you can play an easier mode that turns off the insanity meter as well as native attacks and for newcomers i would highly recommend this at least until you’re more fluent with the game’s many quirks. Playing online could also theoretically yield benefits I suppose if you’re lucky enough to come across helpful players that can give you tips but i had little such luck in my time with the game, that said once you are able to dig yourself out of the deep hole that the game initially drops you in you can start to see glimmers of a grander system.
Details on the character’s arms and legs stand out nicely, the amazon rain-forest is aptly dense and everywhere you look you’ll find color movement and life, sun and moonlight bounce off of the wet dirt and leaves in a convincing way that might momentarily trick you into thinking you’re actually in the rain-forest yourself. Music in the game is largely non-existent but there is a nice series of eerie sounds that slowly swell as your character loses sanity and experiences hallucinations, this well-designed soundscape helps those moments feel far more alarming than they otherwise would and that successfully ratchets up the tension in an already constantly tense game. Voice acting is also pretty good across the board so as far as audio goes.
Overall, Green Hell makes no bones about what it is and can’t be faulted for being a purposefully difficult game that knows how to keep your back against the wall, even after you get your arms around everything that’s expected of you, it doesn’t really ever feel like it loses that edge over you so for that the game accomplishes exactly what it seems to want, it’s a relentless test of your ability to plan solve problems and adapt. The Steam version of the game looks beautiful and well optimized and we highly recommend Green Hell to any survival game veterans and enthusiasts.