Attention all personnel: non-human presence located in cryogenic bay. Quarantine procedures have been activated. Please report to security personnel for instructions. Thank you for your co-operation.
This is the warning you’ll hear on entering the main part of Tyler Scarborough’s Stasis Interrupted: Chapter 1, which might be described as a science fiction horror story. The warning – the first of several which cascade down on you – is given within a vast chamber deep within what appears to be a massive colony transport vessel. The chamber as stacked with stasis pods, presumably each one designed to hold individual colonists in a state of suspended animation during the voyage. However, all is not well, as evidenced by the warning.
Walking a little deeper into this huge chamber will trigger the additional alerts, each more dire than the last, culminating in a call for all personnel to get to the escape vehicle launch bay and evacuate the ship. Clearly, a major incident has occurred, and the warnings are your cue to find the escape vehicles.
Three massive airlocks separate the cryogenic bay from the rest of the ship – but only one of these is operational, alarms grinding and warning lights flashing. Beyond it lies the first signs of trouble: blood slicks the floor leading the way to the crew stasis pods, all of which are empty. Several identically dressed bodies lies on the floor. Bald and with bare feet, they would appear to belong to former colonists – and all clearly died violently. Just what has happened? Dimly lit corridors beckon you onward…
Finding your way through the ship is not as straightforward as might first appear. Beyond the crew stasis pods is a network of corridors, all under emergency lighting. Visibility is reduced to what can be seen through the sweep of yellow light cast by strobing lights, some of which may reveal more of the crew as you progress, and which can lead to a slight sense of disorientation.
Eventually, the corridors will lead you to the ship’s cargo deck, stacked high with containers of equipment and supplies. Once again, finding your way across this area isn’t entirely straightforward. Just keep your eyes on the deck, and you may find the way. Once you do reach the far side of the cargo bay, things get a little easier, as emergency light sticks help direct you to the last of the escape vehicles.
It is aboard the escape vehicle that you’ll encounter the disembodied voice of another survivor, giving you instructions on what to do next. Unfortunately, whether by accident or design, the audio message was too distorted for me to clearly understand. Also, shortly after hearing it, I found myself back at the spawn point with a teleport script error message. My assumption is that the message marks the end of “chapter 1” of the adventure.
This abruptness of this apparent “ending” (assuming it’s not an error) did spoil things a little for me; Stasis Interrupted is otherwise an exceptionally well crafted experience. The transport vessel feels huge, as one might expect such a space craft – presumably on a one-way trip – to be. Certainly, if this is the first chapter of an unfolding story, then I’m looking forward to seeing what comes next; there is enough to keep one engaged here – and the use of spatial and ambient sounds is so far the best I’ve come across thus far in Sansar. It would also be interesting to see how things might be enhanced once the likes of NPCs in Sansar are properly catered for – being pursued by the unfortunate colonists could add a sense of urgency to the situation!
Stasis Interrupted is accessible via both VR and Desktop modes, and I had no problems in exploring the environment while in Desktop mode. However, the initial spawn point for the experience does contain a warning for those using VR mode and who might be sensitive to flashing lights. Those comfortable with passing beyond the warning can use the teleport to continue (denoted by “ENTER” on the floor), and enter the experience proper.
If you are looking for somewhere that little bit different to explore for Halloween, or enjoy environments a little reminiscent of Alien, Stasis Interrupted is the place to be.