Sons of the Forest is a demon-hunting sequel to the 'terrifying' survival game The Forest
The Forest is an open-world survival game released in 2018, after a whopping four years of Early Access. The wait was apparently worthwhile, because these days it's got an awful lot of positive reviews on Steam. And now it's getting a sequel too. It's hard to tell much from a single trailer, but where the first game was primarily "try not to die in the world's worst forest," I get the feeling that Sons of the Forest will be more narrative-focused, as it seems that you'll be actively hunting down the monsters amidst the trees. There's no word of a release date yet, but given our experience with the first game—we found the VR version clumsy in spots, but still atmospheric and terrifying—we'll definitely be keeping our eye on this one.
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V1.12 - VR
Hey everyone, This patch updates The Forest VR to include support for the new index controllers as well as fixing and improving a ton of VR specific issues. For the full list of fixes and changes, check: https://www.facebook.com/SKSgames/posts/2941667589180665 As always, please continue to post your bug reports and feedback in the Discussions area of the Community Hub
Hey Everyone, This patch fixes some small issues that have come up since the last patch release. We also added a new option for increased player versus player damage in multiplayer games. This option is off by default, but if turned on will allow players to more easily kill each other. v1.11 Fixed a performance issue when transitioning from day to night when using high or very high shadow option (Balance) Tweaked amount of damage one of the late game creatures can do to structures (Balance) Lowered amount of protection from creepy armor Fixed snow stumps popping in too soon Fixed missing pickup icon on rabbit in a cage Fixed hang glider unusable after completing alternate ending Fixed hang glider disappearing after saving and loading while holding the glider Fixed chance plants grown in gardens could be removed randomly (Multiplayer) Fixed a performance issue with rock paths in big saves (Multiplayer) Added option for increased player to player damage in multiplayer games (Multiplayer) Players can now set each other on fire with fire weapons Edit: v.1.11b Added a fix for some players experiencing freezing on loading new or saved games after downloading latest patch Fixed small menu translation issue Fixed issue where player could take extra bomb damage in single player if mp increased damage was enabled If you are running a dedicated server, you will need to restart your server with the latest version to be compatible with this patch release. As always, please continue to post your bug reports and feedback in the Discussions area of the Community Hub
The Forest VR is terrifying, atmospheric and clumsy all at once
The Forest VR somehow manages to be both a clumsy VR port and a brilliant example of how virtual reality can improve a game. It does some things much better than the non-VR version: I want its clever watch-based HUD in every VR game, and playing with a headset is far scarier and more atmospheric. But it also feels like Endnight Games couldn’t break free of the constraints of the base game, and lots of its VR elements end up feeling like afterthoughts. The parts that do work—and even the ones that don't—exemplify just how much changes when you make a game for virtual reality. VR wasn't an afterthought for The Forest, but the VR version that exists now was retrofit to the base game. Creative director Ben Falcone tells me that the team started testing The Forest VR way back in 2013, before the open-world survival game even entered Early Access. But it was a struggle—everyone on the team would get motion sickness from playing, which made both developing and testing for VR systems difficult and time-consuming. Initially, they intended to put the game’s regular animations into VR, using headsets to make players feel more present in the world, but when they tried out touch controls for chopping a tree the right choice was obvious. "We knew we needed to convert all the weapons to this system," he says. And chopping a tree, along with other basic interactions, certainly feels more fun in VR. As you chop, the tree splinters based on the angle of your swing, and I like being able to crouch down to where I’ve started chopping, circle round the tree to find where the wood remains attached and take out the last chunk. I love the way your stats are displayed, too. Everything useful is tracked in your watch, including hunger, thirst and energy. Your hunger is shown by a big meter shaped like a stomach that gradually empties, and it’s all big and bright and easy to read at a glance. It’s a small thing, but it’s an example of how The Forest VR always keeps you grounded in its world. The base game already did that by putting its menus in-game: your inventory is just all your items laid on a mat in front of you, and the crafting menu is a book you pull out of your backpack. But being surrounded by the world on all sides in VR makes it more believable. "You’re instantly in the game and playing in VR from the first moment you turn it on, there are no tutorials, no forced missions," says Falcone. "In our minds this makes it the perfect type of game for VR." The lighting looks excellent in VR, especially at night. Forests feel dense and unknowable, and the way the shadows flicker in the firelight is creepy. VR games are, in general, more scary than non-VR games because it feels like there’s no escape, and that holds true for The Forest: it’s terrifying with a headset. I’ve mainly been playing in peaceful mode, which removes enemies, because the first time I saw a cannibal in the distance I yelped aloud, ran back to my base and cowered in the corner. I’m always looking over my shoulder, and catching sight of something moving in my peripheral vision gives me the chills every time—something that doesn’t happen when I'm not wearing a VR headset. It surprised the development team just how scary the VR version was, Falcone says. "Everyone on the team was pretty desensitized to the horror elements of the game by the time the VR version was in its testing stages, we all had some jump scare moments seeing the enemies at actual scale, and actually feeling present in the world." Caves are especially spooky, and when you walk through one it feels like you’re being squeezed by rock on all sides. When the monsters start gurgling, I can’t help but panic. But some of that atmosphere is undermined by clumsy mechanics, and the touch controls aren’t as slick as I’d hoped. You can’t squeeze your fist on demand, for example, or transfer objects from one hand to the other. You pick your preferred weapon hand in a menu, and all the other one can do most of the time is hold a lighter and open your inventory. And when I’m forced to fight those enemies that I was so afraid of, the VR controls make it way too easy. The game doesn’t seem to care whether you’ve swung your weapon with any weight—it just cares about whether you’re making contact, so you can basically flail your weapon back and forth in front of you and deal tonnes of damage, constantly staggering the monsters you’re up against. While I haven’t tested many of the late-game item interactions, the early game stuff often feels janky. When you chop down a tree, it splits into logs as it falls to the ground. You can load a couple of logs at a time onto your shoulder to carry them around—and apparently that doesn’t require you to use your hands at all. The logs just sit on your shoulder and swing around when you move your head, as if they weigh nothing. It’s floaty and awkward. The crafting menu is a nightmare because the only way to select anything is to point with your hand: you can’t scroll through its near infinite pages by squeezing triggers, which seems like a no-brainer. The Forest VR also regularly switches viewpoint to the third-person, which is jarring. I like building treehouses, which you reach by climbing a rope. When you interact with that rope in VR, the camera pulls back slightly from your body so you see your character’s back, and you have to press the control stick to climb up. The camera then flicks to halfway up the rope, pauses for a bit, and then rejoins your character’s eyes when they’re in the house. All of these little things show how easy it is to break immersion in a VR game, and how many things need to be changed when adapting from one format to the other. But despite the clumsiness of some of the VR elements, it’s still the version of the game I prefer. I haven’t played it multiplayer, but from the many playthroughs I’ve watched it looks brilliant—a mix of slapstick VR fun and a genuine sense that you’re relying on your teammates. "Seeing a player wave at you or dance around a fire is one of the coolest parts of the experience in multiplayer," Falcone says. "We think this was one of the most successful parts of the conversion to VR." And besides, I never played the base game for the purity of its mechanics—I played it for the feeling of being lost in, and battling against, a hostile world. Wearing a headset makes me feel more lost in that world than ever, and I’m willing to put up with some awkward controls for that extra dose of atmosphere. Just don’t ask me to delve into any more caves, please.
Hey everyone, Here’s a small fix for the update released yesterday, fixing an issue where the end boss could become invisible, and adding another fix for radeon series cards. Added some additional fixes: Fixed end boss vanishing if all players leave area Additional possible fix for radeon series 5 and 6 cards If you are running a dedicated server, you will need to restart your server with the latest version to be compatible with this patch release. As always, please continue to post your bug reports and feedback in the Discussions area of the Community Hub
The Forest's free update adds hang gliders, crossbows and more monsters
I haven’t finished The Forest yet because, frankly, I’m too damn scared. I’m not particularly comfortable in regular forests at night, let alone ones containing mutated cannibals and labyrinthine cave networks full of mutilated corpses. And now, thanks to the 1.10 update, there are two new horrifying monsters presumably waiting to snack on me. At least I’ll have the new crossbow to shoot them with and hang gliders when I need to make a quick exit. Along with the new monsters and handy tools, 1.10 introduces eight new structures for survivors to build, loads of fixes and some graphics tweaks. There’s improved underwater rendering, textures, shadow draw distance and ambient occlusion, along with new volumetric clouds. Endnight’s also tackled cheating in multiplayer. Apparently, players were able to damage or instantly kill other players thanks to some exploits, which have been removed. Buildings could also be destroyed even with building destruction turned off, so that’s also been fixed. It’s good to see The Forest still getting updates even though it left Early Access back in May. It took four years to get from its initial launch to a final release, but clearly Endnight isn’t quite ready to leave it just yet. Maybe the developer will eventually add something that makes me courageous. The update is available now, and you can check out the full patch notes here.
Hey Everyone, This Update adds new buildables, some new caves to find those buildables in, a new weapon type, two new late game creatures, and a ton more. If you’ve completed the alternate ending you’ll also find some new decorative buildables available in your survival book. We’ve also improved some of the games visuals, including the large lake in the middle of the world, tweaked the look of our ambient occlusion to detail shade things further back, improved shadow distance rendering and also improved the look of tree textures and the distant billboards. Along with this there are new volumetric clouds (can be toggled off if you prefer the old looking clouds) Improved underwater rendering including new caustic effects and lots more. To help stop cheating in multiplayer, we removed exploits that would allow players to simulate damage on other players or instant kill them using cheats. We also fixed exploits with our building system that could allow players to damage buildings with cheats even if building destruction was set to off. We also fixed an issue where players could pretend to be other players in chat. In addition to this, you can now kick and ban any player in your server, even if they have made themselves invisible. Along with this there are a bunch more tweaks and fixes, for the full list check: http://survivetheforest.com and https://www.facebook.com/SKSgames/posts/2467503683263727 edit: Here’s a small hotfix to today’s patch release. Fixed issue with save games with gardens having chance to kick players Set volumetric clouds off by default in the presets Fixed an issue with unused gpu test grass that could crash some games Fixed area in cave that was flooded with water when it shouldn't have been edit: updated 32bit and VR build to latest Edit: Here are some more fixes for last night's update: Fixed area where you could fall through ocean at edge of world Fixed left over underwater cave entrance that lead to nowhere Fixed an issue where microstutter would occur if game was started from a new game (issue didn’t affect saves) Added possible fix for radeon 5 and 6 series cards that were having issues launching game If you are running a dedicated server, you will need to restart your server with the latest version to be compatible with this patch release. As always, please continue to post your bug reports and feedback in the Discussions area of the Community Hub
The Forest s mutant cannibal island gets even weirder in its next update
Weird new mutants, hang-gliders and twisted effigies of a comfortable suburban life lost – The Forest is getting a bit stranger in a big update next week. After four years in early access, the sandbox survival-horror game launched in full back in April, but Endnight Games never stopped work on it. Since launch, the game has seen a full VR mode added, a lot of tweaks and tuning and continued bug-hunting. The next update will be expanding its vaguely lovecraftian world a bit, with new things to build and fight and I think the player character may be cracking up a bit in the trailer below. (more…)
Hey Everyone, Our new update for The Forest will release December 10, on both PC and PS4. We’ve put together a trailer showcasing some of the new features. Check it out below. https://youtu.be/j-MSFEqWPOw The team at Endnight