Sheltered

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Good
  • Fantastic use of the family dynamic that makes every little loss painful (and vice versa)
  • Ability to customise each individual family member with attributes and traits to make them feel like your own family
Bad
  • Relies on several run ending random events that can be absolutely brutal and unfair
  • Some game elements could have used more attention and balance which results in a sometimes grindy experience
7.5

Sheltered puts you in charge of your own family (two parents and two children) as you try to survive in a harsh post-apocalyptic world from your underground shelter. Focused on careful resource management and ultimately survival can you lead a family through these difficult times? With a family to care for each step outside into the wasteland is a necessity albeit a dangerous gamble that might not see you return home.

sheltered-gameplay-create-parent

To help you build this connection with your family to really drive home the important of your survival Sheltered allows players to design their family which includes cosmetic and stat options. These statistics are split between five character attributes and traits which each serve their own purpose and the selection of which will depend on your intended playstyle as it determines efficiency of specific tasks.

Attributes include strength for damage, dexterity for combat accuracy, intelligence for recruitment, charisma for trade and perception that provides better chances of discovering items from searching. This is then paired with one of several traits which have positive and negative variants. For example the optimistic trait means that stress is gained slower while its mirror trait is pessimistic where stress gains are increased.

Other traits provide combat advantages, the ability to fix things faster, improved movement, extra item recovery, reduced tiredness drain and boosts from food items. After selecting your ideal positive trait a random negative trait will be assigned at game start.

sheltered-gameplay-shelter

Your Sheltered game begins after moving the family into an old abandoned shelter which you turn into your new protective family home to survive against the chaos above ground. With limited supplies it is a balance between scavenging the wasteland, crafting and relationship management that will see you and the family members survive.

While inside the shelter you’ll be able to spend your resources to create and improve elements of your living situation. Things such as beds, toilets and showers are some of the early required items in addition to upgrading your power generator, water filter and shelter statistics in general.

Each of these actions uses some sort of material though which must be scavenged by sending some of your family members out into the wild wasteland. During these adventures you may encounter other desperate humans, caches of items and random events. While these are originally on foot if players can repair the broken down camper van they can reach destinations faster by utilising their vehicle.

sheltered-gameplay-combat

To improve the chances of successful scavenging you can equip your family with weapons to defend themselves. This combat uses simple turn based mechanics and is usually a last resort for those that cannot be reasoned with. Players need not kill everyone though with the option to subdue opponents and thus prevent the negative mental issues involved with killing another.

Sheltered is a great fallout shelter management ad simulation title that features an enjoyable upgrade loop with plenty of depth and variety to warrant a few playthroughs. This is combined perfectly with the family element that not only gives you a reason to adventure out but also makes each little loss and victory feel meaningful.

Summary:

  • Lead your own customised family unit through post apocalyptic survival as you select attributes and traits for each family member.
  • Upgrade your shelter and items to increase the chances of long term survival.
  • Manage needs, relationships and mental elements of each family member to ensure peak operations.
  • Large number of random encounters to face that provides some replay value.
  • Venture out to find resources on foot to upgrade your vehicle and adventure further for more unique encounters.

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Review Platform: PC

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Written by
Samuel Franklin
Samuel Franklin is the founder and lead editor of the Games Finder team and enjoys video games across all genres and platforms. He has worked in the gaming industry since 2008 amassing over 3 million views on YouTube and 10 million article views on HubPages.

Games Finder is a Steam Curator and featured in the aggregate review scores data of MobyGames and Neoseeker.
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