- System: PC (PS4, Nintendo Switch TBD 2019)
- Publisher: Humble Bundle
- Developer: HopFrog
- Release Date: April 18, 2019
- Rating: NR
- Genre: Adventure
- Players: 1
- Official Website: https://hopfrogsa.net/forager
Who it Caters to
What to Expect
Forager isn’t a difficult game to jump right into. Players control a little humanoid being and will immediately notice their land to travel is quite tiny. When you begin Forager, unlike Minecraft you aren’t just given free roam of a giant world to explore. Forager makes the player earn their adventure by salvaging from the little land to gain gold and resources that inevitably allow them to buy new areas to explore. With each new area, your map, items to find and things to see increase exponentially. Within the first hour, you’ll go from one small piece of land to at least several that each posses’ new items to salvage and to use as building materials.
After the first few hours of Forager, you’ll notice something quite interesting. Minecraft—in comparison to Forager—has players gaining materials to build large structures, sleep, farm and various other activities. Forager has many of these themes but dialed down to create a simpler experience overall. You still need to find iron ore and coal to use for crafting in a forge and you’ll need to gain experience points—which is earned via every action—to buildup your explorer’s income/equipment but never does Forager feel overwhelming. You’ll live off the land by procuring berries, meat and other foods to keep your hearts from dropping due to hunger and you’ll occasionally face enemies in the form of slimes or wild boar but never did anything in Forager feel like Minecraft, despite the apparent themes from it.
For example, let’s examine the food/health/level system in depth within Forager. As you make progress in Forager by doing just that, foraging, you will gain level up points to earn new skills and help your survival aspects just a bit more. Dying in Forager comes at a pretty heft cost, a Game Over. When you die in Forager, you are forced back to the main menu and must load a previous save—Forager has auto saves and manual ones—to try and survive better than your last go. Mirroring Minecraft, you are basically getting better as you progress, but unlike Minecraft, advancement comes in a more obvious way thanks in large part to the game telling you what you’ll get as you level up via the skills you can purchase.
Comparing Forager to Minecraft becomes a moot point even further when you look at the design HopFrog went for visually. Unlike the blocky landscape of Minecraft, Forager can be more compared to Fez—an indie puzzle title—and/or Stardew Valley. There’s a very retro design to Forager that makes the overall game look akin to a Super Nintendo title but that actually gives it its own uniqueness. We love the little mushroom people that make sad faces when you hit them or the cows running around trying to escape your pickaxe slamming into them for fresh meat and leather. Add to this a very simple—but not noteworthy—OST and Forager becomes a truly cute and simple indie title.
Honey's Gameplay Consensus:
- Excellent use of simple game design to make for addicting gameplay
- Simple art design that is both cute and retro feeling
- Planned updates should provide more content for an even larger adventure
- Can be a bit repetitive for those who want more building elements