Written By Rob Bonnell
As the name suggests you’ve been placed into what looks like a situation of survival, where you have to learn to fend for yourself and teach yourself to survive……or do you?
Right from the moment you load this very yellow game you feel like you’re being told how to play it at every step you take. With Kovac’s rules and schematics for crafting items left lying around on the cluster of islands you find yourself on, you find you’re just going through the motions. The game starts as most typical zombie apocalypse games do, stranded somewhere unknown, no memory of previous events leading to the opening of the game and the unyielding urge to escape the gratuitous carnage that will surely ensue.
But hang on, you meet this guy who calls himself Kovac, who gives you some training that you will use for the rest of the game, and before you know it you’re a master survivor and find surviving on the islands isn’t all that bad. You meet other survivors, who themselves have been stranded on these islands and slowly a very basic story starts to unfold. Your main goal is to get off the islands to salvation and to do this you have to go through a series of quests presented by all the characters you meet.
The game itself is very smooth and fluid, the atmosphere of the islands are captured well, they look like holiday destinations with debris and carrion lying around, which you expect to see when the world has gone down the proverbial pan. You will however not want to set-up your sunbed on the beach and catch a few zzz’s in the sun, no matter how relaxing the atmosphere is. The further you go inland though the less relaxing it gets and the more hostile the environment turns, and all your Kovac training becomes more necessary.
The order in which you can craft though isn’t set, you can find items and put them together well before you find the instructions. This can become annoying when it occurs, because you get all excited you’ve found a new weapon or a piece of armour to craft and you’ve already crafted it. Anti-climactic or what?
To add to the survival of the game you have to take into account four basic needs, the main being health followed by hunger, thirst and tiredness. Health is recuperated by crafting health poultices or finding health kits, the kits are harder to find and restore all your health, so use them wisely. Hunger is filled up by food that you find or hunt on the island and can be crafted together with other items to make different recipes with different outcomes. Thirst is easy enough there are water wells that you find on the island, most of the time found by camp fires that are found by Kovac’s secure locations. Tiredness is the most difficult to combat because you can only sleep at one of Kovacs secure locations, which aren’t very secure. The moment you open the door it triggers an alarm alerting all zombies near you to your presence, you then have to dispose of all the targets before you can get in to have that well deserved nap.
A good hint is to clear out these locations before you get too tired, because lo and behold all the basic needs affect your ability to do things, tiredness lowers stamina, hunger lowers how hard you hit and so on.
The game also has a day-night cycle, when it gets to night there are different creatures that come out and hunt you, but are afraid of your torches light, they are harder to defeat than your average zombie, mainly because they freak out and run away when ever you shine your torch in there direction.
The leveling up system is easy, for every level you progress you get a skill point which you then use to unlock a certain ability like starting fires, or crafting a particular type of arrow and many more.
The game also has a two player co-op, that gives the player a more interactive experience if you don’t want to play by yourself. You can either play with some one locally on your own pc or play with one of your friends online.
This game is basic in nature and doesn’t really take a lot of effort to play, it looks nice, plays fine and has a load of good features that we have seen before. But despite all the games standard features and simplicity it does keep you going back for more and more, this is the type of game you would want to play if you’re just passing time and want to smash stuff just for the fun of it.
Oh and did I mention it has Zombie Ostriches?