Darwin Project Is Like The Hunger Games for Streaming

Darwin Project Is Like The Hunger Games for Streaming

When I first saw “Darwin Project” at the Xbox
press conference at E3 last year, I was confused: –Let’s move on to the next arena. Looks like he’s gonna sneak
in on the back window! Here we go! Shot in the back, that’s once- twice! Immortal’s in trouble! Oh that was gonna do the damage.
An arrow to the belly! That’s gonna be the win for Bloodymero. Bloodymero wins the round! –And then, this happened to me when
I played it over the weekend: –Here we have Tipjean and Polimayo. Down to the fight, Tipjean already hitting him
twice and already connecting with a headshot. Polimayo will connect twice back. Evening up the odds! Three times! One shot! Anyone’s game! Polimayo making it all the—oh! Polimayo with
the first blood on the comeback victory! Holy f*ck, dude. How do you feel?! –I can’t lie. That felt pretty amazing. “Darwin Project” is the newest kid on the
Battle Royale block, from developer Scavengers Studio, that takes the genre down
more of a “Hunger Games” path. Instead of a brutal 100-player fight to the
death, this game narrows it down to 10 players and turns every encounter with other players
into an exhausting and exhilarating battle to see who will be the last player standing. As a contestant, you must search the map for
basic materials like wood, to craft arrows, or leather, for boots that boost
your speed and mask your trail. Additionally, the game features a constantly
falling temperature meter that you have to monitor carefully. Ignore it for too long and the
health will eventually drain. If a player doesn’t kill you, the cold will. The good news is that you can use those same
basic resources to make fires and coats to keep you warm, or pick up drinks
like hot cups of coffee. Your main weapons are an
ax and a bow and arrow. That’s it. So upgrading your ax and
crafting arrows is crucial. The combat takes a while to get used to but
landing a shot from your bow or a nicely timed ax swing definitely feels satisfying. The map will also have other randomly scattered
pickups like med kits or electronics that help you craft special tools like shields,
invisibility cloaks, or—my personal favorite—turrets. I’m more of a defensive player, so I like
the option to craft a shield and a turret for backup, or at the very least to serve
as a slight distraction to the other player. Stumble across something in the world that
an enemy player’s already interacted with, like a chopped-down tree, and you
can inspect it to track them. Tracking grants you the advantage of being
able to see the outline of a player’s body. This lets you line up shots just as they round
a corner—or you can just keep an eye on them so they can’t flank you. You’ll also be shown their health meter
and exactly how far they are from you to know if it’s worth tracking them
down or just letting them go. It adds a heightened sense of tension that
forces you to immediately switch up your play style and be more mindful of the
areas you’ve already combed through. What makes “Darwin Project” even more
unique is its “show director” feature. The show director essentially serves as the
game show host for each match, commentating on each play and dishing out special abilities
that directly impact the outcome of the match. A show director can close down zones on a
timer and drop nukes to push out players to adjacent zones. The show director’s given a bird’s-eye
view of the entire map and the locations for each player to hopefully
nudge them into each other. There are also other abilities to choose from,
like electronics drops and even buffs to players—like healing or warming to reward a player after
a hard-fought victory over another player. Or, if you’re a corny show director, you
can buff a preferred player to increase their odds of winning mid-fight. This is what sets “Darwin Project” apart. It introduces a human aspect to the game that
requires friendly cooperation from both players and directors. I’ve experienced both fun
and not-so-fun show directors. I encountered one who dished
out basic math trivia before rewarding players after a fight, and commentated each
encounter like it was the World Cup. –We have official versus two other people! We have—oh no! Polimayo! I’ve also had salty directors
who took my muted mic personally: –Hello there, number six! All right, I guess we’re done here. Goodbye, number six. –And helped other players win at my expense. There’s a deeper performative aspect to
the game that can be fun, if you’re up for it. And sometimes, it can even sway
the odds in your favor. Some directors didn’t mind my muted mic,
but when I was able to talk to them and butter ’em up a bit, I definitely
reaped the rewards later on. I’ve also seen show directors punish the
bad behavior and reward the good. You’re also able to vote on the performance
of each game’s show director, so hopefully, there’s an added incentive there
to also not be a power-drunk jerk. During one match, a player threatened to rate
the director with one star if they used the gravity storm ability that lowers
the gravity in a specific zone. And when the final zone is closing in on you,
one hit in the gravity storm can spell disaster as you get flung deep into the cold. I also hate that feature, but come on, y’all. There are better ways to communicate that
to a person determining the outcome of the match that doesn’t come off so childish. What makes the show director role even more
fascinating is that it can be linked to a Mixer or Twitch account so that directors
can leave certain decisions in the hands of the viewers. So if you’re a jerk, then be extra weary
of the wrath of the people. Be charming and maybe they’ll bless you
with a heal after a tough fight, like a sponsor in “The Hunger Games.” I’ve been playing this game since the closed
alpha, and it’s great to see how far it’s progressed. It’s an ambitious game in an already competitive
space, but it’s trying some dope things. It’s more welcoming to onlookers and even
those who may want to dabble in shoutcasting or streaming. Even I got a bit into the show director role. I’ll be playing a lot more of this game
moving forward, especially once it opens up the option to team up with
another player in duos. “Darwin Project” is available now for PC and
Xbox One in Early Access, and Scavengers Studio says they’re aiming for a Summer 2018 launch.

19 Replies to “Darwin Project Is Like The Hunger Games for Streaming

  1. I don't think the show director should answer to anyone as far as rating goes. He is the director, if he wants you to die, you're going to die. Has no one seen hunger games?

  2. Eh. Batle Royale games are an annoying trend now. Just like how people had a mad craze for WW2 games, then it died. Then COD type games. Then it died (well somewhat).

  3. I appreciate that this is at least a fairly interesting take on the battle royale game mode but this makes me happy because more and more people are disliking all the battle royale games meaning less and less come out which equals the mode itself dying out. Getting real sick of all the multiplayer games that are designed to last a couple of months instead of actual fun games that last years.

  4. It sounds cool at first, but the amount of dick this game sucks is unholy. This game is the triple threat, it’s boring, laggy, and the combat is awful. It’s a cool idea I guess but the way it’s presented in a broken way…

  5. So it's basically Fortnight or pubg but twitch players followings of dick licking toadies can effect the game? Super pass.

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