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Seldom do horror game developers base their games on true events. However, the developer of Kholat, IMGN.PRO would like to be different. After all, being different makes you stand out from others. The game was based on a mysterious tragic event that happened almost sixty years ago in Russia. Kholat, a survival horror game was released on June 9, 2015. It is available on platforms like Microsoft Windows, Play Station 4, and XBox One.

The Dyatlov Pass Incident

The game is based on a true incident which involved ten Russian students, the Dyatlov Pass incident.  The incident involved the death of nine experienced hikers who were all from the Ural Polytechnic Institute. The game is almost similar to the incident because of the multiple references which are obvious in the game. The storyline of the game is similar to the real incident too. There were many speculations revolving the story. Until now, the mystery behind the incident remains unsolved. This is probably one of the reasons why the game developers of Kholat chose to base the game on the Dyatlov Pass incident; which is perfect for creating suspense and sending mysterious messages to the players. If you want to know about the incident more, you could read about it here.

kholat 2 - Kholat

Introductory Story of the Game

Fifty-six years ago, Russia, in the northern Ural Mountains…

A group of students of the Ural Polytechnic Institute embarked upon a difficult, winter expedition to reach the Otorten Mountain. Their journey seemed to progress according to plan. However, on the seventh day of their trip, the weather conditions worsened. They lost their orientation and were forced to set up a camp on the slope of the mountain called Kholat Syakhl (means Dead Mountain). It was their last stop.

Three weeks later in Yekaterinburg, when their families received no word of their success, the first rescue expeditions were sent.

On February 25, 1959, an abandoned campsite was found. The tent was torn down and covered with snow, with all the group’s belongings left behind inside. Further examination revealed it was cut from inside out. The surrounding footprint indicated the crew had fled the tent. They were barefooted. This suggests a frantic escape; characteristic of people scared out of their wits.

Two sets of prints led to a forested area down the slope. The rescue team found an improvised fireplace – and – two bodies. They were lying in but their underwear, with cuts and scratches on their limbs, suggesting they tried to climb a tree in panic.

What could terrify them so much?

The next three bodies were found scattered a few hundred meters from the first discovery. One of them had suffered a fractured skull, despite no evidence of a struggle.

It took the spring thaw two months later to enable the rescue team to find the rest of the victims. The last four skiers were found buried in a thick layer of ice and snow.

Their autopsies led to even more bizarre findings – all of the bodies had severe internal injuries caused by an undetermined force, similar to that of a serious car accident. No external damage or bruises were visible, besides a tongue ripped from one victim’s mouth and a strange, orange skin color.

Many speculations arose from these puzzling events. Such theories included an attack by a local tribesman, extraterrestrials, or just an avalanche. Each theory, however, served only to create more questions.

The truth behind this tragic event remains unexplained to this day. What really happened?

Maybe the answer is still waiting to be discovered, deep under the snow.

Keys Used for the Game

– L shift (running): Running in deep snow is tiring. Adjust the pace to the surrounding conditions so you don’t exhaust your organism. Before setting off on a long journey, rest in the camp and set a goal for a safe route.

– R mouse button: Focus on an object to take a better look at it.

– F (flashlight): Lighting your way with a flashlight will make you become more visible.

– Observe the environment carefully for better navigation with the help of the map and compass.

– M: map

– C: compass

– Barely accessible rocky notches may lead to interesting places and shortcuts. To gain access to them, you will sometimes have to squeeze through (L Ctrl) low-lying obstacles or jump off them.

What makes the game challenging to play is that you can only navigate through the place with the use of a map and a compass. The map doesn’t really give you enough details to guide you through the game, except for the coordinates that will appear. The game developers probably made use of this strategy to make the players feel as if they were really in the game as if everything was real. However, you could use markers around the area to set as indicators of where you currently are in the game.

The game developers also put another interesting detail in the game. There are written journals of the hikers that are scattered around the area. The written pieces are detailed and give additional information about their experience. The journals allow the players to be hooked by the mysterious but useful stories written by the hikers before the incident occurred. The journals also give a peek at what happened which could give hints on how the player could survive the game.

What made the game critics applaud the game was its extreme attention to detail. Everything seems true to life, including the snow, trees, footprints, houses, caves, and more. The sound effects of the game are as excellent as its graphics. You could observe how detailed the game developers are when the area is noisy because of the falling snow but when you enter a cave, it becomes quiet. You could also hear how timely the sound effects are to every step you make and the gush of the wind.

kholat 3 - Kholat

As mentioned, navigating through the game is hard. This means that it if you enjoy exploring the area, then you will surely have fun. On the other hand, if you are interested in ending the game fast, then you need to be wise in reading the map, using the compass, and following the coordinates because some of the players took thirty minutes trying to figure out which way they should go. The area covered by the game is extremely wide, which is why it is understandable for players to get lost in the game for a long time. However, if you are wise and lucky in picking which way to go, then the game might be easy for you to play. The game could perfectly give you the eerie vibe of horror games because of the graphics, sound effects, narration and the story. If you want to know more about the game, you should visit the official site by clicking here.

Aside from moving through the map, you also need to be careful on where you step, if you are clumsy then you could suddenly die in the game.

Are you fond of playing horror games? There are tons of horror games currently available to play, another one is a game called Huntsman: The Orphanage, to know more about this game, click here.