Atomic Heart is an action RPG set in an alternate universe where the Soviet Union still exists. It’s been teased for a while and it featured as an in-depth ray tracing demo in 2019. It’s got a wacky, Soviet retro-futuristic vibe.
You’ll take on the role of P-3, a KGB agent sent to investigate why a manufacturing facility has gone silent. You’ll rely on ranged and melee weapons to survive, and based on some trailers we’ve seen, things can get pretty hairy quick.
Slated for release this year, Atomic Heart could be a really successful game. It looks like it’s on the right track for visual appeal and gameplay, and the premise sounds interesting. Being an indie, it may not see broad adoption, but we’ve definitely got our eyes on it.
So if you’re curious about Atomic Heart, we’ve collected everything we could find for you. Here’s what we know.
Atomic Heart release date
Though it’s been in development for a few years now, Atomic Heart still doesn’t have a set release date. So far, developer Mundfish has said the game is coming out sometime in 2021. However, Steam has moved the expected launch date to simply “TBA.”
If we have to venture a guess, we’d say the game will probably release in the fall. Summer is a dead time for game releases. However, all of the major games come out in the fall, too, like Call of Duty. It’s possible that Atomic Heart might release this summer, just to get a head start before coverage and attention shift to the bigger titles.
Atomic Heart trailers
Atomic Heart has several trailers out for you to watch. Most are a few years old at this point, but you can still get an idea of what this game will look like. The first one is the announcement trailer from 2018, which you can see below.
Next, if you’re really excited about Atomic Heart, the developers released a 10-minute trailer that you can watch below. It’s also a bit old by now, but it’s still worth a watch.
Developer Mundfish also released a 7-minute gameplay trailer featuring the Plyush mini-boss. It’s a spectacular video, showing off the player character exploring, killing some enemies and taking on a mini-boss.
Finally, there’s a ray tracing trailer to check out. This video gives an idea of what you can expect, which boils down to some really fancy lighting effects. While we think it’ll look incredible with RT on, we imagine that even the RTX 3080 or 3090 will struggle with this game at 1440p or 4K ultra with ray tracing on. Good thing Atomic Heart will also support DLSS.
Atomic Heart plot, gameplay and crafting weapons
Since word about Atomic Heart has made the rounds for a few years now, we have plenty of things to talk about. We’ll break them down into their own subsections below.
Plot and setting: Atomic Heart is a first-person action RPG set in an alternate universe where the Soviet Union still exists. Science has made huge strides, including robotics. You play as Major P-3 who is sent to investigate Plant 3826, which has gone silent. You will encounter killer robots and other oddities as you fight to survive and uncover the truth.
In a 2018 interview with PC Gamer, Mundfish CEO Robert Bagratuni said that Atomic Heart was “conceived as an open world game,” saying that the game’s map is “a vast circle, the borders of which reach the Arctic in the north, Altai mountain in the south, and with plains, lakes and much more in the middle.” Plant 3826 itself is spread out over the map with different area for players to tackle.
Combat: In Atomic Heart, you will use a mix of ranged and melee weapons to fight off enemies and bosses. Ammo will probably be scarce and from some of the videos we’ve seen, it seems like even basic enemies will hit hard and fast. Weapons can be crafted and perhaps found.
Crafting: Some weapons might be found (we don’t know for sure), but there is a crafting system for you to create makeshift weaponry to fight off baddies. How it all works remains a mystery, but some gameplay footage has shown modifying your loadout to boost your stats.
RTX ray tracing support: Atomic Heart will support Nvidia’s RTX and DLSS technologies. Word on support for AMD’s ray tracing on RDNA2 GPUs remains minimal at this point. You used to be able to download an RTX demo of Atomic Heart, but the old link now just redirects to the game’s homepage.
Influences: From checking out the gameplay footage, you can see Atomic Heart’s obvious nods to BioShock, Stalker, and Nier: Automata. That’s excellent, because those are some awesome games to draw inspiration from.
Atomic Heart outlook
Based on what we know so far, Atomic Heart looks like a fun, creepy adventure into what could have been a Soviet golden era. This Russian sci-fi romp may not be for everyone, since it appears to be quite graphic, but we sure are excited.
Obviously, the big news is that we’re still waiting on an official release date for Atomic Heart. You can wishlist it on Steam now if you want so that you’ll be notified when it does come out.
For now, we’ll just have to content ourselves with the variety of gameplay trailers and screenshots available.