I was sent Fort Solis as a review code. While I am very grateful for the opportunity, I will not let it sway my opinions about the game. This will be my honest review.
Jack Leary is an engineer on Mars on the final days of his tour when he receives a distress signal from a nearby mining camp. What starts as a simple check-in quickly turns into the longest night of his life. There is something strange happening within the walls of Fort Solis. Can Jack survive long enough to find out what?
Fort Solis felt more like a visual novel or interactive fiction than a video game. Players have some freedom with their investigation of the base, but the experience is somewhat rail-roaded. There are some variations in the narrative based on the choices players make through the quick time events, but you’re essentially walking from checkpoint to checkpoint and collecting clues in between.
I had no issues with this style of narrative because it felt like I was watching a solid sci-fi series with no filler. The atmosphere is properly creepy, the music is fantastic, and the voice acting is phenomenal. The game may not be scary, but it does enough to keep the story engaging. Fort Solis does a fantastic job at creating a creepy isolated experience as you stumble through the darkness, piecing the mystery together. The mystery is fine, but I think I failed a bit too many quick time events to get the full story.
A lot of the narrative exists through dialogue and logs you find throughout the base. A lot of the game is tied to exploration, so keep that in mind when considering buying this title. The logs and clues were well implemented, making Fort Solis one of the few games where I went out of my way to collect as much of the story as I could because of how invested I became. I didn’t uncover everything sadly, but I was left with enough mystery for at least another playthrough.
There are multiple endings, and the endings are influenced by the choices players make throughout the game. It is easy to start passively enjoying the narrative and fail a quick time event. I recommend you stay alert if you want to avoid a bad ending. That said, the game is short enough where you can easily see other endings. If you do the bare minimum to get through the checkpoints, it should take players no more than 4 hours to clear the game. I took my time to get lost in the world because I was enjoying my time through the base. There is also a ending credit scene you should look out for.
I enjoyed Fort Solis. The game has a well-designed narrative, amazing voice actors, and a great sound track. This is a great game if you enjoy thrilling sci-fi and don’t mind interactive fiction. That said, I think $25 is a little too much for what you get. I recommend you pick it up when it goes on sale unless you can’t really can’t wait. This is a game you should at least play once for the unique experience it provides.