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Atomic Heart Release Date, Platforms, And Gameplay - What We Know So Far

Gamers have been anticipating the alternate-reality first-person shooter Atomic Heart since ts first trailer dropped in May 2018. That initial glimpse showed disturbing yet compelling images of killer robots, bloody clowns, strange creatures, and plenty of carnage set to an upbeat, tango-inspired soundtrack. The sci-fi title has resurfaced several times over the past two years with additional gameplay trailers on YouTube, the last of which showed up to tantalize gamers in August 2020.

The open-world action game focuses on what might have happened in Soviet-era Russia, but did not. This timeline includes a technical revolution in which the internet and holograms exist, as do Communism, imperialism, and conflicts with Western countries. The main character is a Soviet Special Duty KGB Officer who encounters a malfunction in the robot control system. The world appears to be influenced by the likes of BioShock, Fallout, Metro 2033 and, of course, Russia.

It sounds intriguing, right? Here's what we know so far about Atomic Heart.

Does Atomic Heart have a release date?

There is no release date specified for this title yet. 

While the game was once slated for a 2019 release, with a beta set for late in the year, that clearly didn't happen. Rumors out of Russia, where developer Mundfish is based, stated that development had been rebooted and much of the gameplay in the trailers was faked, with the open-world feel being changed to an episodic and linear one. The rumors pointed to incompetence, shutdowns, and internal conflicts within the company making the game.

It's encouraging that more positive information has come out about Atomic Heart since. Hopefully the problems that beset its previous development process have been fixed. However, it is unlikely that the game will see a release before 2021.

Which platforms will Atomic Heart be released on?

Atomic Heart was originally set for the PlayStation 4, and is actually still available now as a PlayStation 4 and PC preorder that costs $89.99. Perhaps because it has been delayed so long, however it looks like the game will also come to next-generation consoles. A new gameplay trailer that released on Aug. 11 was the first clue, showing a screen at the end claiming that Atomic Heart would come to PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and PC.

Mundfish told IGN that the game would release primarily for the next-generation systems at this point.

"Our game will have no loading screens due to [the] fast SSD," the company said. "Next-gen hardware also provides an exclusive opportunity to fulfill our artistic vision and deliver our game with stunning visuals with no downgrading, which was absolutely essential for current gen.

What is the gameplay like in Atomic Heart?

Mundfish is playing it pretty close to the vest when it comes to Atomic Heart's gameplay, but there are a few trailers that offer a general idea, including the most recent one. It's clearly an atmospheric title with plenty of interesting sights, and it looks like a typical gory first-person-shooter-style action in many ways. Still, those weapons are fascinating, and the enemies faced by the protagonist are just as much so. The main character also looks like he does some interesting things with his hands, involving wires (a power source?) and even orange lights in one scene.

It's not entirely clear what's happening much of the time (why so much carnage under the see-through whale?), but we can't wait to find out what the finished version of Atomic Heart looks like — whenever it comes.