Welcome to Geek Chronicles’ latest exploration into the worlds of sharpened claws and hungry maws. This next venture sees us sheltered in murky forests, the sound of thunderous footsteps shaking […]
Welcome to Geek Chronicles’ latest exploration into the worlds of sharpened claws and hungry maws. This next venture sees us sheltered in murky forests, the sound of thunderous footsteps shaking the earth as the trees tremble before the scaled beast’s advance. The sun has set and now the night with its feral monsters rule this wild land, leaving us lost within the darkness.
While many may not be aware of such events unfolding, there has been a significant increase in Dinosaur video games in the last few years that have become more centred around intricate survival mechanics and horror elements, a development that (in our scaly opinion) we are “frilled” about and is long overdue.
Some of the titles to be vigilant for if you’re a fan of facing off against petrifying prehistoric beasts include games like Compound Fracture, Fossilfuel, Instinction and Deathground. However, today we will be discussing the upcoming yet enticing prize known as The Lost Wild.
Developed by Great Ape Games, a now wide-ranged global team who started out back in 2008 as modders (someone who makes modifications and unofficial add-ons to a pre-existing game that adds new mechanics, items and visuals), The Lost Wild definitely seems to capture the theme and feel of a dinosaur game.
Claustrophobic forests filled with vast trees towering over you, casting the undergrowth below into shadow? Check.
A plethora of primordial predators pursuing you through such an eerie environment with very little hope of survival, let alone of escape? Double-check.
Add in the narrative of playing as an experienced investigative reporter and also communicating over the radio to as of yet unknown voice for aid in your navigation of abandoned facilities nestled deep within the surrounding feral forests? Well, let’s get started!
However, to break all of this down into more Baryonyx bite-sized bits, let’s begin with the plot that’s been hinted at for the game.
The protagonist is Saskia, an extremely determined investigative reporter that’s somehow found themselves stranded after having an odd experience with a “mysterious temporal event”. A curious choice of words for when dealing with dinosaurs.
The dictionary definition for the word ‘temporal’ states that it focuses and relates more to the concept of time. This strongly indicates that the element of time travel could be involved within the game’s narrative, which does tend to make things a little more tricky to follow in some cases but also acts as a good explanation as to exactly how these titanic terrors are present. However this is ,of course, speculative.
Though this does bring up the question of where and when the game is set, which isn’t as easy to answer with the possibility of time travel being active. However, what we do know states that the protagonist will be exploring abandoned Japanese facilities as well as the untamed wilderness surrounding them, which suggests that humans have had a previous presence prior to our arrival. But this does beg the question, where did they all go?
We aren’t exactly sure of this either, due to the fact that these facilities are very much abandoned and devoid of life (if you don’t count the more carnivorous residents residing there now, that is). It is highly likely their newest neighbours did devour most of them during the clear carnage that took place preceding the protagonist’s appearance but maybe not all of them.
It’s been stated that during the game we will be communicating with a mysterious voice over a radio that is apparently very useful in navigating a way to escape the facilities. In addition, it’s also been stated that this unknown voice is also going to be a key factor in discovering what’s actually happened to cause such chaos by drip-feeding pieces of information and clues to keep you intrigued. This is going to eventually paint the picture of the events that took place on this island, which is a pretty cool way of revealing the history without bombarding the player with too much information.
At the end of this wild ravenous rollercoaster, the protagonist is going to be faced with “an emotional and impactful dilemma at the conclusion”. To us, this sounds like a very captivating finale for what seems to be quite a promising story.
Now, with the narrative covered, let’s talk more about the mechanics and design of the video game. The land of The Lost Wild incorporates a design similar to the “hub and Spoke” layout. This essentially means that instead of travelling to different locations for missions and being unable to revisit previous levels, you have a central “hub” that acts as a base for the player with minimal challenges. From this space, you can go to the different surrounding areas that offer unique resources, encounters and environments.
This is quite similar to several horror games such as the Resident Evil series, Dino Crisis and Alien: Isolation, which makes sense since the developers have made references of taking inspiration from these classic titles. Some other influences that have impacted the game are Half-Life and Firewatch as well as (unsurprisingly) Jurassic Park.
It’s been stated by Great Ape Games that this layout will allow for “paced and controlled storytelling”, which seems like a pretty neat way of not overloading the player and compliments the dynamic of the mysterious voice over the radio drip-feeding you information, creating a nice link.
In addition, the world design of The Lost Wild will also contain several networks of passageways and paths between the areas that encourage intensive investigations into the environment around you to better reap the rewards of what the game has to offer.
Just beware that you will not be alone in this maze of habitats and that NPCs (Non-Player Characters) can also travel around. This video game is said to have the dinosaur act and behave more along the lines of animals instead of monsters through the use of a systemic A.I. platform.
This basically means the dinosaurs will be much more tricky to tackle, especially with you being unable (for the most part) to kill them.
“What!?” I hear you cry out. “How on earth do we defeat such dangerous denizens then!”
The answer is quite simple really, be smart, be resourceful and be aware of the environment around you to utilise it as an advantage. Two key tactics mentioned by the developers in dealing with these monstrous meat-eaters are Intimidation and Evasion.
Intimidation is quite straightforward and to the point. Use improvised contraptions, makeshift traps, non-lethal weaponry and (above all) fire to scare the blood-curdling creatures away. It’s here that surprise, startle and scare tactics will be the most useful factors in buying yourself time. Remember, fear is the main tool of your trade here, so make sure to sharpen it into a spear that lances straight into the hearts of your enemies.
However, like actual animals, these opponents do adapt and will get used to your tricks, so it’s recommended to switch up tactics once in a while.
This neatly leads to Evasion. Unlike the previous strategy, this path relies upon stealth and awareness of what’s around you. Most (but not all) of the predators pursuing you will probably be quite big, so there’s no shame in hiding within a building until they go away. Leaves you a lot of time to plan out your next moves, like what distractions can be applied to draw attention away from your position? Which path allows the protagonist to best outmanoeuvre and elude the terrifying threat? Where will you take refuge after you get away and is it secure? Here the mind is your greatest friend with your wit being a close second.
The fact that you can utilise and adapt these strategies to your style means you must rely on your personal ingenuity rather than ability-based skills often earned through experience. We think this is a pretty awesome method to truly capture that element of Survival within the game as well as encouraging imaginative solutions.
Now, some of you may be wondering if you can tame the dinosaurs or can even play as one of them. To answer these queries, the developers have stated that you can’t due to the fact this is a Survival Horror game where the protagonist is at the bottom of a rather long and toothy food-chain.
With that said, what you can do is form a temporary bond with certain creatures which could help you. Just remember that the A.I. is meant to represent realistic animals with their own “motivations and sense of self-preservation”. This kinda suggests to us that if things start to go wrong, don’t count on your scaly ‘friend’ to stick around for very long.
Now, the developers haven’t stated which species of Dinosaur will feature within the game, as they want to retain an element of mystery. However, we can speculate with the information given to us both from The Lost Wild’s official Pre-Alpha Teaser Trailer and the developer’s YouTube Channel some of the species that will feature.
Early on into the trailer, we clearly see some (relatively) small Pterosaurs fly across the decrepit facilities. While we aren’t sure what species exactly they are, it does open up the possibility of encountering flying enemies within the game. For us, this could add a whole new dynamic in how you repel these reptilian creatures.
Further on into the video, we also come across several smaller, feathered Dinosaurs species running across and leaping off a fallen log. To us, this definitely gives off raptor vibes. But, again, we can’t confirm this.
Besides these small glimpses into the game, we also get to capture a look at one of the larger forces of this forsaken forest after it ambushes a deer. This predator is the biggest creature we see in the trailer and is shown much more clearly than the other inhabitants, suggesting this could be a real challenge for players to overcome (or be eaten by).
In our opinion, due to its large size and small crests on its head, we believe this towering terror could be an Allosaurus. These animals are the smaller cousins of the T-Rex and lived during the Late Jurassic Period, acting as an ambush hunter due its incredible swiftness.
Another factor for thought is the deer, as this species did not exist during the dinosaur’s reign on the planet. This does, at least, give us the notion that the setting for the game is a more recent time than befits such ancient creatures.
In addition, Great Ape Games have stated that they have no plans on making The Lost Wild co-operative or multiplayer at this point in time, so don’t bet on your buddies to save your scaly hide.
In our opinion, we’d love the option of seeing our friends sprinting from a Spinosaurus or outwitting an Oviraptor. However, the reason behind this game being solely single-player is to create an experience that’s both immersive for the player while also being visually detailed. Regardless, our excitement and anticipation for this game is palpable.
All in all, we are extremely excited for The Lost Wild and all its primordial perils. But what do you think, dear readers? Are you ready for your next clash against these age-old titans of earth’s past? We certainly are, and if you want to find out more about The Lost Wild, then check out their website for more information at https://thelostwild.com.