If you read my last article about Refuge, then you already know how desperately excited I am about this atmospheric PvP adventure. Since I last wrote about it, it has gained a lot of attention, some of the screens were on the front page of Imgur and it was even featured on Gamespresso. I think that like me, people recognize the unique concept for the game and the effort going into and that draws people to it. Refuge is nearly halfway funded at this stage, so I think it is time to take a closer look at the title.
One of the initial things that drew me to Refuge, apart from the moody grey colour scheme and Unity engine, was the concept. The aim of the game is to out-survive the other player, any way you can. You can choose to hunt the player down or try and evade detection. It reminds me of how Undertale has a genocide and pacifist run. I really like having free reign over how I play and it is obvious that a lot of thought has gone into Refuge with replayability in mind.
The weapons operate on a top trump system where the weapon with the greater damage value will win in a conflict. This can be influenced by the character’s abilities. This adds a risk to hunting down players since you’ll never know if they have a better weapon, especially since the starter packs are randomized. An equal effort has been put into making evasion more difficult, as you traverse through the world you have a chance of revealing your location by leaving a ‘trace’ which will tell the other player where you are. You are also at the mercy of the elements and can die of exposure or running out of supplies. It has been stated that loot is sparse in the game so I don’t think players will be able to evade each other indefinitely. This is basically two player Hunger Games it seems.
Personally, I think the gameplay looks pretty sound and I’m quite excited by the premise of the game. Essentially it takes place on an island called the Ark which has been drawing each of the characters to it. It has been hinted that the Ark has hidden secrets that players can learn about through exploration and we have seen that the map will include rooms and cave to explore. The thing I find very intriguing is that apart from the other player, the island is meant to be uninhabited, but the lights are still on and there are clearly buildings there. It reminds me of Lost, though hopefully Refuge will have a clearer plot.
We know Refuge is being built in the Unity engine and that low poly black and white style actually seems to work quite well. I think it compliments the soundtrack they have been showing off, which is full of tension when you listen to it. It is still early days, but I have a lot of confidence in Refuge, the developer, Fox Rogers, seems to be a smart guy with clear objectives and I am looking forward to seeing what he creates. There is still nearly three weeks left in the Kickstarter and you can grab yourself a copy of the game if you back it for £10. Personally, I backed this one because I respect the unique take on an old concept and I do love a good survival game.