Map Review of coldburn

Map review of Coldburn

by GrandmasterJ | August 14, 2023 | 3255 characters

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The screenshots for this map look very intriguing, and the name is mysterious too. A big part of the map is taking damage from extremely cold temperatures and I thought I would hate that mechanic but I thought it was well implemented. It's kind of like Mario games when he's underwater and eats coins to regain oxygen. Although I can't imagine more than two players having a good time on this map with the limited supply or air coins.

We start off in a room where we have to uncover the start button. There is also a secret here so that is pretty cool. We get some cool cutscenes here and throughout the whole level. We get a cutscene for a lot of new hazards like a big sucker that kills some allies and we have some story cutscenes near the beginning. After this is a spawn update to a slow conveyor into the level proper, with all it's blue foggy glory. The map is atmospheric as hell and the custom models for the enemies and weapons (the magnum is a big error so I guess that model wasn't included) along with the use of numerous sprites and fantastic lighting came together to create a unique and cold experience. As we descended deeper we noticed large signs informing us of 'sanctuaries' which were resupply rooms that always held a checkpoint and the current temperature which also indicated how much damage we would take at a second.

The gameplay was mostly exploration and scavenging as we would have to crawl down dark and foggy hallways to find out what was at the end while also gobbling up air crystals so we didn't freeze to death. At a certain point my teammate and I had to stagger our approaches as we needed every crystal we could get to survive the walk down the hall. There are plenty of enemies along the way, houndeyes, human grunts, gonomes, and zombies, which are all reskinned and given some glow effects. This makes our HEV drain very fast, once it's out we die quickly.

The map does a lot of unconventional things and I think it's balanced for exactly two people, so opening a server up to a larger group seems like a recipe for disaster. But it's a really atmospheric adventure and it utilizes the near constant cold damage mechanic well. The visuals are top notch and shows an impressive blend of models, sprites, textures, and lighting. I don't quite buy the 'moon around Neptune' aesthetic and I even remarked to my teammate that it seems more evocative of some test that players are endlessly incarnated in. The map is marked beta but there was never a followup, too bad.


  • A+ atmosphere
  • the constant cold damage mechanic was done very well, provided there are no more than two players
  • lots of custom content that came together in a cohesive and immersive way
  • plenty of supplies
  • plenty of checkpoints that also doubled as supply rooms
  • literal signs tell us how much damage we can expect to take and where safety is


  • more than two players competing for resources would probably end the run
  • missing revolver model
Score: 9 / 10
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