Lost Planet 3: Why It’s Like Dead Space 2, Giant Bosses & The Nathan Drake-Inspired Star - What You Need To Know
Lost Planet 3 reveal, prequel plot, mech combat, survival horror and multiplayer revealed in our massive preview.
Published on Apr 10, 2012
Lost Planet 3 marks another collaboration between Capcom and a western developer, this time Spark Unlimited, the studio behind average shooters Turning Point: Fall of Liberty and Legendary: The Box. But don’t worry, NowGamer saw Lost Planet 3 first-hand at Capcom’s Captivate event last week, and it looks superb.
Serving as a series prequel, Lost Planet 3 follows the first crew to arrive on the hazardous ice planet E.D.N. III, and focuses on an expedition worker called Jim. This is a classic, story-driven Lost Planet experience, and you can fin out everything you need to know about it right here.
Lost Planet 3’s protagonist is similar to Nathan Drake
Where Lost Planet 2 would have you create a faceless mercenary without a back story or personal motives, Lost Planet 3 fleshes out the world of E.D.N. III by placing you in the role of Jim, one of the first humans to explore the barren ice planet.
Jim signs up for an expedition to E.D.N. III to begin colonizing the planet, and to earn money for his wife and child. However, his journey quickly descends into the usual battles against hulking Akrid aliens that fans of the series have come to expect.
Although Jim is the wise cracking type, when the Akrid menace threatens his crew, he quickly develops into a tough hero, who must battle aliens and the harsh environment to survive.
However, Jim also refuses to sleep in his crew’s quarters, opting to sleep inside his Utility Rig mech instead, hinting that he’s a little more complex than he first appears.
Regardless, a large chunk of the plot is dedicated to Jim and his team finding ways to utlilise the planet’s natural resource, thermal energy to thaw the ice. However, questions start to arise about whether or not Jim’s crew are really the first humans to set foot on E.D.N. III, throwing him into a shadowy plot full of mysteries.
There's a much creepier tone to the on foot sections now.
Lost Planet 3’s tone and on foot combat is similar to Dead Space
Jim is a worker, not a solider, so while he can use weapons when he needs to, he will often use his Utility Rig mech and its tools to battle the Akrid horde. The thing you have to remember is that Jim’s team doesn’t know about the Akrid, so their mechs aren’t fully weaponised, giving Lost Planet 3 a real survival vibe.
Aside from E.D.N. III’s brutal snowfields, Lost Planet 3 delivers indoor sections that are tonally similar to Visceral’s Dead Space series. These dark, tense sections are incredibly claustrophobic and help create a balance between larger expanses.
Many of these areas have an atmosphere similar to survival horror titles like Resident Evil, and they are quite often filled with massive Akrid beasts that cannot be bypassed, forcing Jim into battle.
Akrids can also pounce on Jim and lurch in for the kill. Similar to QTE sections in Dead Space 2, you will have to hammer buttons to draw your knife and kill the attacking beast before it take a bite out of Jim.
Lighting is also employed to create a sense of dread, as shadows flicker, and light swings to keep you on edge. Jim can also pick up radio diaries of previous crews sent to E.D.N. III, which helps you piece together the madness unfolding around him.
Lost Planet 3’s mech combat is first person and brutal
Whenever Jim hops into his Utility Rig mech, the action switches to first person mode, which is a departure from previous Lost Planet games. While Jim can explore the frozen wastes in the rig, many areas are too small for it to pass, and require the player to exit the vehicle.
In one scene Jim’s rig freezes over, and he has to exit the vehicle and shoot the ice off it, allowing it to move again. But when he leaves the rig he leaves himself open to Akrid attack, and you will most certainly get ambushed a lot.
Rig combat sees Jim grabbing Akrid with the mech’s left arm then tossing them around or crushing them brutally. The rig can also volley off shots with its right arm. It remains to be seen if Jim can pilot other mech types, but we’d be surprised if Spark doesn’t include different models.
Will we be able to kill this from the inside, like in Lost Planet 2?
Lost Planet 3’s bosses are massive
Similar to the first two Lost Planet games, the bosses in Lost Planet 3 are colossal. In Capcom’s demonstration, Jim is seen tussling with a giant Akrid crab boss while on foot. The beast has weak points behind cracks in its shell, as well as the muscles around its arms.
As Jim fires at the crab, he will eventually break off part of its claws, causing it to scream in pain. You can then have Jim lob a grenade in the crab’s mouth to finish it off. It’s a classic Lost Planet battle, the kind that dazzles you with its sheer scale and spectacle.
After returning to his Utility Suit, Jim is confronted by another crab, but this time the action plays out like a first person boxing match, as you block and counter its swipes. Then, using the suit’s drill, you can attack its weak spot until its claws break off, and follow up by destroying its shell.
These encounters are hectic and inventive, requiring keen attack placement and well-timed attacks. Bosses have always been a highlight of Lost Planet, and the trend is set to continue in Lost Planet 3.