Is this another unofficial Hunger Games PC project? Many video games with a battle to the death feature seem to be taking inspiration from the popular book and film series. Looks as though The Darwin Project is no different. This is a new indie project in the works from a couple of folks in downtown Montreal. Let’s dive right in and learn about Scavengers Studio’s new game.
A Fight to the Death
The Darwin Project sounds like your run of the mill post-apocalyptic story. The world is overpopulated, resources are scarce and laws are even stricter. No matter how minor the crime, death is the penalty and is performed in an arena for entertainment. Only the true survivors will see the end of this battle. In an open arena, six people participate in a fight to the death. The last one standing will be figuratively crowned the winner — the prize being your life. At the moment, there are no big game revealing details and it’s possible a backstory won’t be necessary.
In the pre-alpha gameplay footage at PAX East, we are shown an arrow discharging in a curved trajectory, suggesting controls will involve near/far distance aiming. We also get a sneak peek at some battle sequences involving axe-like melee weapons. The perspective given implies that the game will be in third person and players will have a clear interface displaying health, endurance and temperature.
A World According to the Showmaster
Although it doesn’t seem like a revolutionary game, The Darwin Project could surprise us with innovative features and be the next survival hit. On the arena grounds, players can track their opponents with the visible snow prints they leave behind or from their dripping blood if wounded. The option for crafting arrows and campfires are also included in a crafting system.
Perhaps the most exciting part is the showmaster feature. Players are given the role of the game master and will puppeteer over participants in-game. As the showmaster you can close off areas of the map and announce a player’s position to other survivors. These options and more are possible and will be viewable by Twitch audiences. Sit back with a drink and a snack and root for your preferred player as you watch a fun fight to the death.
Giving a player this much power and control will bring interesting conflict to the game itself. Players will attempt to get on the good side of the “showmaster” and also audience members. Will players in the showmaster role be vigilant or run the show like President Snow would? We are sure to find out more soon as the developers reveal additional details.
The Darwin Project has only been in development for a year and a half with a scheduled Early Access release date for the end of 2017. However, there is a closed beta in the works with a limit of 100 participants, offering the chance for you to get a better understanding of the game and its mechanics. If you want the opportunity to be one of their testers, go to the project’s official web page and register for the newsletter.