Review: Frostpunk is an entertainingly stressful game

By Jasmin on May 4, 2018

From the creators of This War of Mine comes another survival-cum-strategy game by 11 bit studios called Frostpunk. Set in a frozen, post-apocalyptic future (thanks to global cooling), you play the leader of a group of survivors and are tasked with keeping your citizens alive. In this world, heat is king and resources must be scavenged and managed. You have the power to make laws and every choice you make will be scrutinised by your people, whether or not it is necessary for survival.

I’m a bit of a fan of real-time strategy (RTS) games like Starcraft and Command & Conquer (RIP) and while I haven’t played those games as of the start of 2018, I’m pretty sure they show you how to play the game in a tutorial. Now with Frostpunk, I’m about three hours into the game and had to restart once because right off the bat, the game chucks you in the deep end. No tutorial. With only a pop-out that introduces you to aspects as you go along, this is definitely an aspect I’m not used to and it is something one needs to get accustomed with in this game.

On top of keeping an eye on the city’s resources such as wood, steel, food (raw and cooked) and coal (for warmth), you also have to keep your other eye on two other bars: ‘Discontent’ and ‘Hope’. These two bars basically signify what your citizens are feeling. Never have the Discontent bar too high and never have your Hope meter too low, failing which will cause disarray in your community and may lead to your citizens to revolt (it almost happened to me). Decreeing laws will affect these two bars and the promises you fulfill or break will too. Every little thing you do will be scrutinised and it is something you have to be aware of always. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what keeps me on edge and stresses me out...and makes me swear out loud because “I DO EVERYTHING FOR YOUR OWN GOOD, PEOPLE!”

While it may have taken some time for me to get used to the game, I enjoyed every minute of gameplay so far. The game, in all its icy glory, is ridiculously beautiful, especially in cutscenes. I’m a bit fan of ice and snow in games (and real life) so I scrutinise snow in games a LOT. Frostpunk is indeed a frozen waste/wonderland, the art directors and environment designers did very well, even from up high where you normally will be while playing.

If you’re a fan of RTS, management or survival games, I definitely recommend playing this game. If you’re looking for something new spice up your Steam library, you should play this game too.

I stream Frostpunk every Wednesday, why don’t you catch me over to our Twitch channel and enjoy watching me struggle?

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I might stream more often too, because I really just want to keep playing the game, so keep an eye out on the Gamehubs Facebook page or follow us on Twitter to find out when I'm streaming!

Frostpunk is available on Steam for RM51 and we got to play the game via a review code courtesy of 11 bit studios.

I need more time
Don't expect Frostpunk to be fast-paced (unless you forever put it on 'very fast time' all the time). I love the concept and I am definitely enjoying the game so far, but I need a lot more time to spare in order to play until satisfaction. 3 hours in, I am not satisfied, I need more.
The Good
  • Great Concept
  • Beautiful Environment Design
  • Stressful
The Bad
  • Might Be Too Slow-paced For Some
  • Stressful
About the Author
Writer, photographer, music lover, friend of the animals, adventurer and PC gamer by circumstance (no, really). RPGs and fighters are my favs, I'll beat you at MK or MvC anyday. Judging all the cups of coffee, even the ones made by myself.
We need a new party member