This post sat in my Drafts folder for nearly two months waiting for me to add that picture…
I’m hearing reports (from my super secret source known as “the Internet”) of a game called Rend revealed at PAX East 2017. Rend is a self-described “hybrid survival game” from FrostKeep Studios, a studio I’ve never heard of, but which supposedly has a good pedigree.
It’s largely being reported as a “survival sandbox” game like ARK or Conan Exiles, but MassivelyOP also compared it to Crowfall and Camelot Unchained. I submit that a better name for this kind of game would be something like “tribal warfare simulator” or “multiplayer online persistent team PvP” (MOPTP pronounced, obviously, “moptop”).
I’ve talked about this before, but I think true survival games are essentially single-player man vs. environment affairs, with the PvP content being an optional bolt-on accessory. Rend doesn’t sound like that kind of survival game.
Rend looks to me like your basic three-faction multiplayer PvP game with what might be generously called survival elements (eg. crafting, base-building). The twist here is that they’ve added some systems to mitigate the gank-or-be-ganked-but-mostly-be-ganked style that currently dominates the existing games and chases away new or casual players. Whether it will work or not remains to be seen. (Personally, I believe that the lengths that people will go to ruin PvP games far outreaches a developer’s capacity to contain them.)
I doubt I would ever play this game seriously because they are implicitly making it difficult to succeed solo. Not to mention that playing multiplayer online games with random strangers is just about the worst experience in the world, at least when you have to interact with them. There is no mention of private servers on their web page.
It’s coming to Steam Early Access in Spring. My standard rules apply: I’ll take a chance on it if it’s on sale for $10 or less, otherwise I’ll have to wait for a consistent groundswell of rave reviews from trusted sources.