Lost Planet 3
|Lost Planet 3|
|Engine||Unreal Engine 3|
|Release date(s)||NA August 27, 2013
JP August 29, 2013
AU August 29, 2013
EU August 30, 2013
|Distribution||Optical disc, download|
Lost Planet 3 is a third-person shooter video game developed by Spark Unlimited and published by Capcom for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The game is the prequel to Lost Planet: Extreme Condition and Lost Planet 2 and takes place on the same planet of E.D.N. III. The game takes a more story-driven narrative approach to the campaign similar to the first game. Unlike the previous games in the series, which were developed internally by Capcom, the game was developed externally by Spark Unlimited with Matt Sophos serving as game director, though series creator Kenji Oguro was still attached as franchise creative director.
A prequel Lost Planet 3 takes place long before the first game, following the story of Jim Peyton revealing the events that led to the first game.
After nearly being buried alive in a cave an elderly Jim Peyton is saved by his granddaughter Diana. Realizing that he does not have long to live he begins to tell her how he came to be on E.D.N. III. Fifty years earlier looking to support his family Jim joined an expedition to mine the resources of E.D.N III. There he meets Dr. Kendric Kovac, operations director Phil Braddock, Doctor Roman, head technician Gale and fellow Rig pilot Laroche. On a job to repair the communications Jim begins to suspects there is a saboteur on the base when he sees someone near the damaged comms relays, and find that Doctor Roman has had similar sightings. Jim dismisses this and focuses on working to support his family.
While out Jim stumbles upon an abandoned NEVEC base revealing that the expedition crew were not the first ones to land on E.D.N III as they were told. The last records detail the Akrid attacking the base and killing the inhabitants. Attempting to leave, Jim fights a massive Akrid leaving his rig damaged and himself close to death before the woman from before saves him. He awakens in a settlement a few days later, his wounds miraculously healed. The woman introduces herself as Mira and meets her father Soichi. Jim finds that the settlers, called the Forgotten, are descendant from NEVEC's first attempt to colonize E.D.N III forty years earlier. Following the akrid attack NEVEC abandoned them to die, however they were saved by Soichi.
Repaying his debt to them Jim is allowed to return but under the agreement that he not reveal their existence. Returning to Coronis he finds it under attack by Akrid, the result of an experiment by Dr. Kovac, who's been studying how to control them. Jim confronts Braddock with his discovery of the first colony. Braddock explains that his father was its leader before it was lost, and that to maintain the expedition's funding from NEVEC he must keep the incident secret. Jim agrees to keep the colony secret and help him investigate what happened, keeping the Forgotten a secret.
Braddock later discovers that when the Akrid attacked the colony his father abandoned the colonists to die to save Braddock, shocking him. Jim tries to tell Braddock about the Forgotten but is cut short when he must defend the base from an Akrid. In the following months Jim grows closer to the Forgotten, in addition to the Expedition. He eventually decides to try and bring Braddock and Soichi together so that they can resolve their pasts.
NEVEC unexpectedly takes over the Expedition and begins looking for Doctor Roman, who with Jim's help has been working on triangulating the purest veins of Thermal Energy, a blood like substance that might be capable of solving Earth's energy problem. Determined to stop NEVEC Jim and the Forgotten prepare to sabotage their mining efforts with Gale's help. While enacting their plan they are confronted by Laroche who has been sent by NEVEC to stop them, discovering that he called NEVEC to the base, and that NEVEC is laying siege to the Forgotten. Jim defeats Laroche but spares him and makes his way to the Forgotten's settlement. Soichi is killed and Jim forced to surrender when he find NEVEC has taken his family hostage.
NEVEC tracks down Doctor Roman and kills her, stealing her research. Jim is saved by Braddock who enacts a plan allowing Jim to escape. Jim rescues the crew, including Laroche despite what he's done. Braddock sacrifices himself to kill NEVEC's soldiers and Jim discovers that he was also able to free his family. He pursues NEVEC's field commander Isenberg, ruining his plan to take control of the Akrid and use them to wipe out the rebels.
With NEVEC defeated the expedition crew and the Forgotten become the first snow pirates. Gale and Mira use Soichi's research to create the Harmonizer, a device that uses thermal energy to heal the user. In the present Jim apologizes to his grand daughter for leaving a legacy where she has been forced to fight before passing away. An elderly Laroche finds them and rescues Diana. Diana is saddened by her grandfather's passing but looks forward to the possibility of winning the war and taking the planet back from NEVEC.
The game's gameplay will be more similar to the first game with a story-driven adventure rather than the second game which replaced the story-driven narrative with a simple co-op and grind-heavy campaign. Using the game's mission-based mechanics, players can choose to take on core quests that progress the story, or side-quests to help out fellow colonists on the planet. The game will allow players to openly explore areas in a style similar to role-playing games with the ability to talk to non-player characters, obtain side-quests, upgrade equipment and build their own bipedal rigs using items gathered throughout the campaign. Thermal energy will no longer be tied to the characters life support, and instead will primarily be used as a form of currency, giving the player more freedom to explore E.D.N. III. Once again, the antagonists of the game will be the Akrid, "aliens" indigenous to the planet of E.D.N. III.
Lost Planet 3 received mixed reviews from critics upon release. Aggregating review websites GameRankings and Metacritic gave the Microsoft Windows version 64.88% and 61/100, the PlayStation 3 version a 59.95% and 61/100 and the Xbox 360 version a 58.93% and 58/100.
In January 2014, Lost Planet 3 Writers Richard Gaubert, Orion Walker and Matt Sophos were nominated for Outstanding Achievement in Videogame Writing by the Writers Guild of America. 
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