The concept of a first person survival game can be pretty attractive when done right. For instance, the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series is built upon this concept, and Fallout: New Vegas has something similar with its hardcore mode. The problem though is that there is no clear cut way of making them just yet and it is kind of ambitious to create a survival game that is actually engaging. At times, you come across something like Day One: Garry’s Incident that attempts to do this, but ends up rather short.
Day One: Garry’s Incident by Wild Games Studio is a confusingly titled first person survival game set in a jungle, wherein players are put into situations where they must live off the land, defend themselves It’s basically like Man vs Wild: The Game if you think about it, and they’re actually more similar than first expected. You play as Garry, a drunk bush pilot who has many issues in life and likes getting lost in hostile environments and coming close to death. He is introduced in the game getting himself hammered before a flight, after which he proceeds to crash into some mountains, or whatever those blocks are supposed to be.
Once Garry has gotten back to his senses, you take over and have to explore, scavenge items, and take part in activities that will help you survive, and perhaps even thrive in this environment. This game does get the basics down, but it doesn’t really add anything more to really hit it home for the players. You do get to carry weapons to defend yourself with, which is kind of reminiscent of Dead Island. Combat and other aspects of gameplay do lack a certain bit of polish and depth though, so if you want something like this but actually much better though, then you can just play Far Cry 3 to have more fun with it.
There are a few things that it gets right, like the inventory that lets you sort stuff out like in the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. games. You can then craft items to aid with your survival, which is a neat way to give incentive for exploration. It does work well enough, but it doesn’t have the kind of depth that players may desire from it. If Minecraft has the more sophisticated crafting system compared to your game, you know that you’re in trouble. The combination of all those elements do make up for a rather unique experience that some may like. It does have a certain bit of charm that may get to some gamers.
It becomes obvious soon enough that the flaws are visible from inside and out. It has a lot of similarities with Miasmata in terms of both appearance and level of polish, both of which are rather disappointing. The technical issues are quite plentiful, with bugs and glitches about to accompany the dodgy graphics. As for the audio, they lack the depth and variety to make for a believable gameplay experience. All of these things make this game seem unfinished, as if it never got playtested at all, much less polished enough to be anywhere near being a finished product.
Overall, this game is just sad as it is played more. With its price point of $19.99 though, perhaps it can serve as a momentary distraction at best. If it does turn out that you like the gameplay, with its late 90′s visual appeal and roughness, then it may not be too bad. They could have done more though to make up for its sub-par graphics though. Perhaps third parties can mod this and make it better, although other games like ARMA III have more modding potential as a whole.
This game just falls short in every turn except for its relatively low, so you can leave it as intended — as bargain bin fodder.
Tested in PC. Final Score: 3/10
UPDATE (October 20, 2013): There has been a recent incident where popular YouTube video game commentator TotalBiscuit had his review video of this game removed by the developers with a “copyright infringement claim”, most likely due to the critique. There are also rumors of suspicious activity like paying people off to vote for their game in Steam Greenlight, backing their own Kickstarter to make it reach the mark (which failed), and posting fake reviews in Metacritic.
These accusation may be seen as unproven, but their active part in removing a review critical of their game is proof of their vehement failure to uphold their integrity as game developers who are supposed to care for their audience.
The copyright claim by Wild Games Studio has since been retracted following overwhelming reaction by the online community against the action.