Top Critic Average
As a lifelong fan of Fortean mystery and atmospheric adventures, Kholat is a game I really wanted to love, but it left me out in the cold in more ways than one.
Kholat's narrative exploration is ambitious, and the real world base for its plot, the recreation of exploring a bewildering and unforgiving landscape and the audio-visual design were all superb. But for what it gets right, the mounting flaws in its design only become more evident and distracting.
Kholat's poor attempts to creep and confound you fail to capitalize on its terrific premise.
Little to no directions are given to the player -- you're just dropped into the world and expected to figure things out on your own. It wasn't until my second play session that I realized the locations marked on the map were of importance. After figuring out proper use of the map and compass, it was easy to complete the game in just around four hours, which felt a bit light for the asking price of $20, considering most of your time will be spent looking at snowy rocks. Overall an enjoyable experience that has a fantastic presentation but just lacks much depth in gameplay.
This thrilling story will keep you at the edge of your seat and will leave you wanting to know more about these events. Kholat won't disappoint the fans of the genre and is worth a try.
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It's a shame because Kholat has one of the best horror game set-ups we've seen for quite some time. Not only that, the team at IMGN.PRO has clearly put effort into sculpting an spooky collection of vistas each dripping in atmosphere. Sadly, wedged between these tense moments is way too much filler. The mind-numbing map reading and navigation would have been easy to overlook if that only made up a small portion of the game. Instead, it forms this drab and unappealing bedrock that threatens to drag Kholat down whenever there isn't something scripted happening on-screen.
Grievously weighed down by its unforgiving orienteering mechanic, tedious gameplay and frame-rate issues, Kholat is more likely to leave you with your head aching rather than your head spinning.
KHOLAT nails the experience of being atop a snowy mountain during volatile conditions, and the idea of it being based on a true story is intriguing. Ultimately, though, the execution falls short and you're left with a shallow experience that is hard to find the fun in.
It's a disappointment to see something squander such potential.
Kholat is a very interesting first person survival horror game that sadly fails to deliver on all of its promises due to an unfocused storytelling style, which doesn't take full advantage of its mysterious premise. A tighter storytelling would have served the game greatly, as its survival mechanics are among the more interesting of recent times. A quality title, without a doubt, but definitely polarizing and not for everyone.