The PS3 version of Lost Planet: Extreme Condition
is identical to the 360 and PC versions as far as content. You play as Wayne, an amnesic soldier who falls in with a group of pirates after a huge bug known only as "Green Eyes" kills his father. As expected, Wayne takes his father's death personally and decides to take on the whole hive in order to get revenge. He also has a few run-ins with snow pirates as well as a mysterious corporation known as Nevec, which has plans for the planet. Storytelling is very scattershot and tends to jump around with little explanation. But, it does its job at moving you between levels, so it is something.
Gameplay is straightforward and doesn't do too many things different from any third-person shooter. What helps to set the game apart is the Thermal Energy Gauge. As you kill enemies, they'll drop orbs of glowing thermal energy which are collected and stored. Thermal Energy is used in a variety of ways and provides much of the game's "push" to keep you moving forward in each level. It's most important use is as a supplement to your life bar. Whenever you take hits, some of your energy is dumped into your life bar. Thermal Energy is always trickling off, so there's never a balance issue resulting in infinite life. Instead, you are forced to keep moving and fighting through levels rather than getting into standstill gunfights. You also need to keep your thermal levels up; otherwise you'll freeze.
Thermal Energy also plays a role in how you attack. Weapons range from machine guns to missile launchers and are always in supply. Kill someone and you can snag their weapon. The trick is that you are only allowed to carry two weapons at a time, so there is a bit of strategy involved. It is possible to run around only using the machine gun, though you might find an energy rifle that can kill in one shot at the cost of some thermal energy.
Vital Suits (VS) add another dimension of play and are one of your bigger Thermal Energy sinks. Like weapons, there are a number of types available, from suits with chainsaws attached to their arms to suits that transform into tanks and snowmobiles. More powerful suits usually require more Thermal Energy, though they can sometimes be the only way to effectively take down certain enemies. VS weapons are interchangeable, adding the same amount of strategy used while on foot. VS weapons can even be used while not piloting a VS, trading foot speed for firepower.
The one improvement the PS3 version makes over previous installments is the added multiplayer options. Among the offered modes are Fugitive, where one player is marked as the prey while everyone else hunts them down, and Post Grab, where teams fight for control of posts scattered across the map. Team and solo Elimination modes are also around. The PS3 version offers all of the maps and skins that shipped with the PC version, including Frank West (from Dead Rising) and Mega Man. All of the downloadable maps available on Xbox Live are also included, bringing the total to 16 maps.