March 30, 2017

Kickstarter Game: Adrift

Adrift kickstarter game exploration game seth howell

I’m not much for combat based games. Combat alone simply can’t hold my interest and, for me, it’s a game’s least important feature. To be a great experience,I need games to have interesting worlds and stories. I don’t play World of Warcraft to raid or do dungeons–I play to explore a vast world and experience the stories that can be found within it. It would stand to reason then that a game relying entirely on your curiosity and spirit for exploration would appeal to me. Adrift by Dying Breed Games is a “curiosity driven tale” on Kickstarter.

Ordinarily I start my Kickstarter and game reviews by talking about the plot. But this time around I can’t really do so because no one knows what it is aside from the man designing it. Adrift is a very different game from what you’re used to. In fact, it’s one of those titles that big name game critics will claim “isn’t a game” at all. It won’t have a thirty hour campaign, it won’t have enemies, combat, or even a HUD. There is no tutorial, no quests, just your curious nature and an open world. What will drive you in this game isn’t a series of checkpoints or objectives, but the story and the environment.

I’ll admit this makes backing Adrift slightly risky. With no knowledge of the storyline before hand, how can one know whether it is something they’ll want to play through? Even more importantly if the story isn’t gripping enough will it make the experience worthwhile?

And yet…this lack of information is what makes it so fascinating. Who am I playing? Why am I where I am? (From screenshots it looks as though you’ve crash landed on an island). Is there a mystery to the Island, or perhaps a fascinating culture to discover? Will there ending up being a fantasy element to it or will it focus on realism? I don’t know and that’s exactly why I’m looking forward to playing this game!

Adrift kickstarter game exploration game seth howell
Pre-Alpha image by Seth Howell

Blockbuster games are often expensive which is why gamers rely on reviews and let’s plays to decide whether or not they want to make a purchase. If I’m spending $60+ on a game I want to know for sure how it plays and what the story is. $60 is a lot to lose on a boring game.

But most indie games don’t cost $60. With indie titles you can take more risks and try things that you otherwise wouldn’t without that feeling of having wasted a large sum of money. It’s for this reason that I don’t have much of an issue with not knowing the plot ahead of time. If the purpose of the game is to experience it as I go, then that’s what I will happily do. I’ll certainly hope the story is fascinating and time well spent, but if it falls short it’s not as big of a deal. With indie games you’re not always supporting that particular game or everything about it. Sometimes it’s more important to back the ideas and the devs who come up with them.

If you’re as interested in this concept as I am, visit the Kickstarter for more information or to drop a donationAdrift is currently a little over halfway to their $6,000 with 12 days remaining.

The game will be released on PC, MAC and Linux.


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