Game Info: (Box Display)
- System: PC, Xbox One
- Publisher: Scavengers Studio
- Developer: Scavenges Studio
- Release Date: Spring 2018
- Rating: TBD
- Genre: Action, Battle Royale
- Players: 1-10 Players Online
- Official Website: http://www.scavengers.ca/
Who it Caters to
What to Expect
On paper The Darwin Project seems like a pretty simple idea, a 10-player free for all in environments that have random items to salvage for better items and gear. Thankfully though, Scavengers Studio seemed to see this being a possibility and threw in some very interesting variants to create a unique experience for the gameplay and presentation. Let’s explore some of those as we talk about the gameplay first.
As soon as a match begins The Darwin Project throws you quite literally into the battlefield. Here you must use your axe—or shovel as that is an available option in the Alpha—to chop trees and get means to make a fire and or find leather via couches. Both of these resources allow the player to then build either fires—which will prevent you from dying to the cold—and or other resources such as arrows, armor and traps. Once you feel like you’re prepared enough its then time to begin making your moves. Will you lure your enemy to your destination or will you hunt others, the choice is yours but be careful as whatever you can do in The Darwin Project your enemy can do as well.
That’s one of the best elements that we noticed right away in The Darwin Project. While other free for all titles feel random, The Darwin Project feels like everyone has an equal opportunity to win and when you lose its typically because you weren’t cautious enough or someone just out witted you in combat. It doesn’t come down to luck of finding a machine gun in a house or armor in some hidden chest, there are random items known as Electronics—which can let you create camo and other abilities like teleport small distances—and a random spectator can also boost your stats if they wish to but these only add a bit of survivability in the long run and never feel unfair. The Darwin Project is indeed a smart game by design and we can only imagine how future updates or the final product can add to this.
Control wise, The Darwin Project feels pretty responsive. Combat boils down to using the mouse—though there is controller support but we’ll get into that in a moment—to either swing your axe and or shoot your bow. The Q button activates your craft wheel where you can make your traps and items and place them depending on where you’re at. It may seem overly simple but combat can be quite fun thanks to the ability to clash melee weapons together and even hit arrows away with well timed swings. Plus, add the trap elements and you can take out enemies with relative ease thus making each round feel perfect in terms of length.
If we had any complaints with The Darwin Project’s gameplay it comes in two forms. The first is that controller support felt responsive for normal attacks and crafting but aiming was terrible, we tried to tweak our settings but nothing rectified it so we hope that’s addressed later. Our second minor worry is the longevity to be had playing The Darwin Project. In the Alpha of The Darwin Project we only saw one map and while it’s randomized with items, the environment itself seemed the same. That’s why we wonder will there be more maps and if there will be more weapons/traps? These can all help increase the fun to be had with The Darwin Project but can also hinder it depending on how they are executed. Though as it is we’re pretty sure The Darwin Project once finished will be tons of fun with a ton of possibilities that will only help the game in the long run.
Graphically, The Darwin Project doesn’t look that great but is terrible either. The map we here at Honey’s Anime got to play on during the weekend Alpha looked nice in some designs but even on the highest settings it wasn’t enough to blow our minds. Though this could be the fact that again this is an Alpha which usually always have imperfections with graphics to avoid any gameplay issues. We’re sure in the final build The Darwin Project will look a lot better and that’s why our issues aren’t enough to scare us. Though if these issues aren’t addressed when the full game does release then it might be a bit of an issue.
Update with Closed Alpha 2
Honey's Gameplay Consensus:
- Incredibly exciting free for all gameplay
- Tons of ways to survive and defeat opponents
- Interesting map designs with room to grow
- Simple but fun controls
- Show Director adds some pretty cool random events that can really keep the game interesting
- Graphically isn’t that impressive
- Might get old if there aren’t more maps and items added