At one point, niche gamers would have scoffed at the idea of the rogue-like making its way into the mainstream. While it may not always exist in its original minimalist form, elements of the genre have permeated a large quantity of recent indie titles with some form of 'permadeath' becoming something of a necessity in any game that focuses on survival.
Among these games, Don't Starve stands out, thanks to a unique art style, an abundance of real and not-so-real dangers, and soon, a new batch of DLC - 'Reign of The Giants.'
Garnering a name for itself ever since release for its unforgiving trial-and-error gameplay, Don't Starve provides no shortage of ways for the player character to perish. There are herds of angry beefalo, spiders, giants sentient trees, werepigs, eyeballs with stalk-like legs, demonic hounds, Krampus, the fabled Deerclops, and even your own hunger and sanity. The odds are stacked against the player, to say the least, and the upcoming 'Reign Of The Giants' DLC looks to provide at least one more thing to fear in the dark: a giant, angry panda.
Just when you thought they were content learning kung-fu and munching on bamboo, it seems they intend to bring about your doom.
Could this seemingly giant creature be a new boss in the upcoming batch of content or could it just be a taste of an even larger, more menacing terror? Can you say end-game pomeranian boss? Horrifying lap dogs or not, with Klei Entertainment adding so many new ways to die into the game, players can no doubt expect new technologies and ways to protect themselves to be implemented as well. With a name like 'Reign Of The Giants,' it could be interesting to even the score against the abundance of nasties by building yourself some sort of makeshift mech suit to provide a temporary boost in both survivability and coolness.
Whatever it is that Klei adds into the world of Don't Starve, gamers can expect the company's unique sheen to permeate the dread of dying over and over, to make the sense of discovery that much more rewarding. This special feeling is precisely why the game made our list of 2013's must-play indie games and managed to surpass 1 million players before making its way into 2014. Now, with the game available for the first time on consoles through the PS4, Klei is looking at possible ways to expand their current framework.
According to Klei's Corey Rollins in an interview with Edge Online, with the success of the game's console release, they are looking at the options presented by the Vita, iOS and mobile gaming platforms. While nothing has been confirmed as of yet, Don't Starve is the perfect representation of a game that thrives on being played in short bursts. Its day and night cycle as well as its liberal amount of player death make it easy to pick-up-and-play at any point. This expansion of platforms may not be in Klei's immediate future though, as their next game Invisible, Inc. is already available as an alpha and is looking to be another hit for the venerable development team.
What do you think the biggest threat in 'Reign Of The Giants' will be? Would you play Don't Starve if it were to come to mobile platforms?
Don't Starve is out now on PC, Mac, Linux and PS4 with its Reign Of The Giants DLC "coming soon".