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Review RPG Codex Review: ICY

Crooked Bee

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Tags: Icy; Inner Void Interactive

Post-apocalyptic games seem to be the vogue again as of late, what with everybody on the Codex playing Fallout 4, not to mention (the admittedly less fashionable) Wasteland 2, NEOScavenger, or the all too numerous survival sims. In the midst of this deluge, I bet a lot of you missed out on the indie Italian post-apocalyptic RPG with gamebook elements by the name of ICY -- set, as its name suggests, in a future ice age, which by itself makes for a rather fresh setting.

We are lucky, then, to have esteemed community member Deuce Traveler remind us about and review it.

After a quick tutorial that plays in the style of a choose-your-own-adventure gamebook, you are flung out onto the overhead map of ICY's frozen open world. In-game time progresses as you move around, explore and hunt. These activities use up critical party resources - as time progresses you consume rations, camping requires gas to start the campfire, firing weapons uses up ammunition, and healing your party members requires first aid kits. Without these resources, your party will suffer the detrimental effects you'd expect - with no campfire, your party will suffer from exposure when resting, while running out of food will lead to death by starvation.

Since these resources are critical to your survival, you'll find yourself constantly investigating the various abandoned structures and strange occurrences that you'll come across during your journey, in hopes of finding an extra gallon of gas, or valuable treasure that you can trade. Of course, exploration comes with risks - rickety structures have the potential to collapse, or might be inhabited by monsters. It may also use up items such as ropes, grappling hooks, crowbars, lockpicks, and so on - tools that you'll also want to collect to aid in your scrounging. Because you eat up these resources so quickly, it behooves you to try and map out potential locations to explore along the way to your final destination.

ICY's combat is also reminiscent of gamebook-style conflict resolution. The more party members you have, the greater your overall combat strength. Your party attacks turn-by-turn, hit points and morale fluctuating until all your opponents are dead or have fled. A "Balance" meter in the center of the screen shifts in or out of your party's favor depending on how successful the previous rounds have been for you, offering combat bonuses to the side with the advantage. I recommend investing some points into your Firearms or Bow skill, as enemy combat rounds are often interrupted by the option to take a pot shot at the enemy before he strikes a horrible blow against one of your companions. Once you've won, it's time to do some looting and use your medical kits to patch up injured companions. Each use of a medical kit recovers a number of hit points based on your character's skill level. Your main character's skills are crucial here, since non-player characters cannot use medical kits themselves, nor scrounge or employ any other special skillset. Overall, the game's combat lacks diversity due to its simplistic nature. It doesn't matter if you are facing off against beasts, humans or mutants - the combat unfolds in the same manner and therefore becomes uninteresting and repetitive by the end of the game.

[...] Normally we think of a post-apocalyptic world as more of a desert wasteland due to movies such as Mad Max and games such as Fallout, so playing one set in a frozen tundra is a welcome twist to the survival formula. Also, except for a few missteps, the game's character interactions are realistic enough, with a group of people who are stressed out because of their desperate situation, but find that they have to work together in order to survive the horrors of their world. There is enough fodder here for a larger story, with mutant creatures, forgotten military caches, and rival groups of roving bandits. It's a shame that the game is so short, as I would have liked to explore some of its mysteries further. I do suggest that fans of indie RPGs give ICY a try, especially if they're also fans of gamebooks and survival games. However, it probably won't have much appeal to the wider audience, and gamers who prefer better visual presentation and tactical combat should probably stay away.​

Read the full review: RPG Codex Review: ICY
 

Cadmus

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Man, I remember that official thread, they had some retarded-ass name for the game, everybody said it sounded stupid so they came up with ICY in like 2 days immediately after the complaints. GOOD JOB, LOLOL.
 

V_K

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Between this, Deathfire, Dungeon Kingdom and I forgot what else, I think the Codex has invented the new type of fag: the titlefag.
 
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Pointing out how stupid that name is shouldn't grant anyone a title, it's like labeling people Theskyisbluefag. Pointless.
 
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Irenaeus II

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Oh, I remembered I have this game!

Icy is a cool name imo
 

Turok

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Alex

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With a name like that, no wonder everyone is giving it a cold shoulder.
 

Deuce Traveler

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It's not a bad game, but it's not a great game either. I like the fact that it takes place in a different kind of wasteland than what we are used to seeing, and that it is a survival RPG rather than a typical fantasy. It only takes a few hours to beat, and so it's worth a pick-up if you get it for a few bucks and want something that you can play while on a plane trip or long car ride.
 

kazgar

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It's not a bad game, but it's not a great game either. I like the fact that it takes place in a different kind of wasteland than what we are used to seeing, and that it is a survival RPG rather than a typical fantasy. It only takes a few hours to beat, and so it's worth a pick-up if you get it for a few bucks and want something that you can play while on a plane trip or long car ride.

Saved me a click, thanks!
 

getter77

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They did pretty solid post-release support, I think there was even another somewhat recent translation and such overhaul update that just kinda happened.
 

Fargus

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"Borrowed" it some time ago. Never finished. My memories of this game are pretty blurry, but i recall among characters was a huge black man who suffered from racists and gay man who asked to find his beloved. Add a transgender and a couple of feminazis and you have a perfect biowaresque game.

This was the last time i played interactive novel shit. Waste of time.
 

thesheeep

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"Borrowed" it some time ago. Never finished. My memories of this game are pretty blurry, but i recall among characters was a huge black man who suffered from racists and gay man who asked to find his beloved. Add a transgender and a couple of feminazis and you have a perfect biowaresque game.
How dare they put some non-traditional characters there? :lol:
Though I also feel that it is annoying as hell when :incloosive:is shoved in one's face too hard.
What was the name of that creepy-as-hell Kickstarter where the (male only) team did nothing except showing how much they like women?...
 

Mustawd

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How dare they put some non-traditional characters there? :lol:
Though I also feel that it is annoying as hell when :incloosive:is shoved in one's face too hard.
What was the name of that creepy-as-hell Kickstarter where the (male only) team did nothing except showing how much they like women?...


I'm a pretty inclusive guy, but I usually feel the same when I see stuff like this. Then again, is there any way to include non-traditional characters such as LBGT and NOT make it feel shoved in? Dunno, just a thought for another thread maybe.
 
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Irenaeus II

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I'm a pretty exclusive guy, that's why I donated to this kickstarter made in my ancestor's homeland, Italy. Too bad they are as pozzed as Kwa, it seems. I hope there's a way to ally with the "racists" and kill the black enemy. In the game, I mean.
 

Mustawd

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I'm just glad that devs continue to exclude Brazilians from RPGs. Because who needs NPCs from the only country in S. America that doesn't speak Spanish? Makes no sense IMO.
 
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Irenaeus II

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I'm glad devs exclude Brazilians from RPGs too. Unless it's a White Brazilian like me, then it's ok. Brazil speaks Portuguese because it was colonized by Portugal. You seem very ignorant and lazy. Are you black?
 
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Irenaeus II

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Living in Brazil is very post-apocalyptic. It's like Icy, but without the ice.
 

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