Nowadays, it seems that there are so many survival games, you never know which ones to choose. Fancy surviving a plane crash, or being stranded on an island? Perhaps you want to try your hand at some underwater survival? Or maybe, you are the galactic survivor type, trying to make anew life on an alien planet? But, there is one game that should definitely go on your list if you are a fan of survival games. Empyrion Galactic Survival is a fun little indie game that all survivalist gamers should play. Especially if you also love sci-fi.
There isn’t much of a story as you might expect. The majority of survival games tend not to have major story objectives. With the exception of perhaps The Forest. In Empyrion, you crash land on a planet (at the moment there is a choice of two). Then you simply have to survive. Well, it isn’t that simple. Unless you know what you’re doing and even then, its debatable.
There is so much to discuss in terms of gameplay options that I’m not sure I have enough time to cover it all. But, here we go. So, the first thing I want to talk about is the tutorial. After you crash land your pod, you need to extract your gear and get to it. You are given mini “missions” to complete to help you get started. Unfortunately, if you are a first time player, it is not always obvious what is required of you. You can access your PDA in your inventory menu to find out more but this isn’t made obvious either. Anyway, once you’ve figured out that you have most of what you need already, you can start building.
After you’ve placed your oxygen generator you get to build a motorcycle. It’s nice that the developers have blessed us with something that makes hunting for materials so much easier. Especially so early on in the game. From what I can gather, there isn’t too much in the way of normal survival traits. By this I mean you aren’t required to sleep or drink. The only thing that is necessary is eating but that isn’t too hard to maintain. The crafting in this game is a lot of fun. I’ve played a for quite a few hours and I don’t think I’m even close to any kind of space travel. It would be nice to have more of a manual for certain elements in the game. I did find myself having to ask someone else who had played this game before for help in some cases.
Regardless, there is so much potential in this game. You have to really be willing to put the time in because once you are properly into the game, it becomes increasingly more difficult to get what you need. Then there is of course the constant threat of drone attacks and the alien bases. If you manage to get that far, you seriously need to be prepared because the aliens do not mess around. They are brutal.
Lastly, I want to mention the levelling system. When you level up (by crafting, mining and killing things) you can enter your tech tree. Here you are able to spend perk points in order for you to be able to craft more things. You can be very specific with your perk points. For example, you could straight away start putting them into crafting your first ship. Or you can focus on working on your tools and weapons. The choice is fantastic. There are so many different elements that I could discuss further but I’ve already gone over my word limit for this section. So, let’s move on.
Graphics & Sound
I was rather surprised with the graphics in Empryion. The details were what impressed me the most. Bear in mind that this is an indie game, they have put so much extra detail into the lighting and textures. They even added grass and flora to the terrain which, from what I’ve read, was not originally in the game. I think the sound could still use a bit of work but this doesn’t mean it is terrible. For a game that is still being updated, what they already have is pretty impressive.
For the most part, the controls are simple enough. Standard controls to move around and nothing seems counter-intuitive. However, there are some controls that I didn’t even knew existed. Like when you need to activate your base, you need to press Y but unless you go into your PDA you have no way of knowing this. Or if you want to control the options of your base such as what your turret shoots at, you can press P to change these options. But, I was unaware of this. Unless you decide to look at the game controls before hand it isn’t made clear how certain things work. And I guarantee that most of you won’t think to check the control options. What would be nice is if the game made it clear that these options are available without you having to resort to the menu.
The difficulty of this game definitely increases the more you play. You can also change the options of your world before you start playing as well. So, if you like more of a challenge you can set everything to difficult from the get go. On the other hand, if you just want to play around with the creative side of things, there is also a Creative Mode which just lets you build stuff. Its more or less fully customisable to the kind of experience you want. However, the game gets much harder once you start delving into space travel and attacking alien bases. And the learning curve is rather crazy but I think it really works for this game. It makes it challenging without being too ridiculous.
There is certainly plenty of replaybility with this game. Since you can play online as well you can play this game with friends for a totally different experience. Since there are so many customisation options for your world you could have several saves, each being different. It works on a seed system so every world is slightly different. Perhaps if this developer decides to continue updating Empyrion Galactic Survival, there will be even more features to play around with. Perhaps even a new planet to start on which would be nice.
You can find the game here on Steam for £14.99 – Empyrion Galactic Survival
If you want to get your hands on one of two Early Access Steam keys for Empyrion Galactic Survival then check out our Steam key giveaway.