A big Max Payne fan, Patrick Streutjens started writing news and articles for PayneReactor in 2003. After the retirement of the site’s founder (Kristian Hollund) he’s the current owner, designer and sole writer of PayneReactor. Streutjens was born on the 4th of September in 1991 and has a career at computer manufacturer MSI as an International Marketing and Communication officer.
Virtual Reality is the future of gaming. At least if we must believe the trend that is going on right now. Currently VR is in its early days of deployment and many developers are still toying around with its possibilities. Pollen however, is a fully fledged exploration game set in space, that will boggle your mind.
The game is set in an alternative universe and takes place on Titan, the moon of Saturn: Delve into the richly detailed Station M and try to uncover the mysteries that lie beneath the moon’s crust. In an alternate timeline of history, where the Kennedy assassination failed and the internet was never invented, the space race continued to boom as the Soviet and US programs combined their efforts to conquer the vast mineral rich expanse beyond Earth. Handing their findings over to private companies, governments gave way to corporations who would soon establish mining & research colonies all over the Solar System. Owned by one such conglomerate, Station M is a recently built research base of RAMA Industries on the Saturn’s largest moon Titan.
A member of RAMA Industries’ research team has mysteriously disappeared. As a reserve employee of RAMA, you are sent to the windswept surface of Titan to investigate. With a large lunar storm looming on the horizon, you have no choice but to enter the base in search of answers…
For starters, the game looks absolutely stunning, breathtakingly detailed. I don’t own a VR headset but if I did, I’m sure this game would be quite the experience. The graphics are good and the atmosphere reminded me of movies like Interstellar, Gravity and games like Dead Space. Pollen is not a horror game though, it tries more to unsettle, making you feel uneasy rather than to scare you.
While the game might be atmospheric and good looking the gameplay is not for everyone. Like the recently released Firewatch this game is about exploration and letting the environment tell the story. Exploration is so important, that if you miss a certain hint, you’ll be stuck for hours not knowing how to proceed. This makes the game feel very slow paced. The fact that you’re in a space suit and gravity is slowing you down isn’t helping much either. If you’re the player that likes to search in every nook and cranny, then this game was made for you.