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Is Atomic Heart an open-world game?

It's a world. It's open. So, maybe?

Atomic Heart puts players into the role of Major Nechaev as he navigates an alternate version of Soviet Russia in 1955. This is a dystopian world with robots that have gone haywire, and Nechaev is forced to put them down while also dealing with his own debilitating mental state. The game has a Bioshock flair and encourages exploration, but many fans are wondering if the title is considered an open-world experience. While Atomic Heart lets you explore and features a large overarching map, the game is only regarded as having an open world depending on your broad definition of the genre.

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Does Atomic Heart have an open world?

Atomic Heart’s world shares similarities to other popular first-person shooters in how it presents its world. The player is free to explore the main hub, Facility 3826. There are locations spread throughout the map that reward exploration and offer unique rewards, but the game primarily focuses on the main narrative.

Related: Atomic Heart’s amorous fridge robot Nora is shocking players with her lewd dialogue

Players will spend a lot of time delving into different laboratories both above and below ground, but there isn’t much in the way of dynamic encounters and aspects that other more direct open-world games contain to fill their maps.

Developer Mundfish stated that Atomic Heart was originally conceptualized as an open world, but the final product would probably leave a lot to be desired for the player who wants to run around and do whatever they want, like in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild or Horizon Forbidden West. There is some choice as to where to go and what to explore, but it is way more contained.

Atomic Heart provides a fun experience for players looking to recapture the magic of Bioshock. The narrative is actually quite bulky, and there is a lot to do and see, but not in the grander scale that the words “open world” bring to mind nowadays.

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Image of Michael Stoyanoff
Michael Stoyanoff
Michael Stoyanoff is a Freelance Writer for Gamepur. He holds vast knowledge on Final Fantasy XIV and World of Warcraft among other MMO's. Bioware RPGs are also a passion. In his free time you can find him lounging with his pug or working on his fitness.