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DGA’s Early Access Corner (3/6/15)

DISCLAIMER: The title “Early Access” means that the product/game is still under development. As such, the content featured below is subject to change. This includes any opinions I may have at the time of writing, as Alpha and Beta builds sometimes change their core mechanics on a whim. It’s important to stress the word opinions, as I find it unethical to review something not yet released in its final form. In other words, don’t take anything you see here too seriously. You can view all of the articles of this series by clicking the “Video Games” tab, located on the top of this page.

Savage Lands – Still a little rough around the edges, but this medieval sandbox survival is still fairly enjoyable.  The graphics are my favorite part of the game, though I do appreciate the easy-to-use in-game crafting/recipe menu (I hate having to alt-tab to consult a Wiki as it breaks the immersion).  Besides fending off skeletons and wolves, you’ll also need to deal with hunger and warmth.  The map/island doesn’t appear to be randomly generated, nor do the items that spawn in the environment.  I have no idea if the developers plan to add this as a feature or not, but I’ll be interested to see of they do.  While this game is fairly enjoyable, you may want to wait a few months until they add some more content.  You can find it on Steam’s Early Access program for $14.99.

Monstrum – Some people can play “Slender: The Eight Pages” without wetting themselves and fortunately, I count myself as one of them.  As fun as that game is, it has a static map and it’s possible to memorize and plan out the most efficient route to maximize your chance of success.  “Monstrum” currently includes two different monsters (three planned for final release) and features a procedurally generated environment, ensuring that no two playthrus will be exactly the same.  Your goal?  Run, hide, find items, and ultimately escape whilst being hunted.  If you can’t handle horror games like the aforementioned “Slender” and/or can’t even look at “Outlast” without crying uncontrollably, then “Monstrum” may not be the game for you.  As a fan of the horror genre, I’d say this one is well worth the price of admission.  You can find it on Steam’s Early Access program for $14.99.

Besiege – There’s a lot of great things to say about this game.  The graphics and models are easy on the eyes, the music is serene, and the physics are pretty darned realistic.  My only complaint is the lack of a tutorial, which is significant considering the learning curve.  I admit that I did partially have fun failing in the creations I made, but I also found myself frustrated at times because I couldn’t figure out how certain parts worked together.  I’m hoping to see some sort of in-game video tutorial showing first-time players how most of these parts function as a whole.  For now, I’ll be consulting Wikis and YouTube videos.  Considering the price however, I’d say that $6.99 is a great deal for what you’re getting here.  You can find it on Steam’s Early Access program at the aforementioned price with an increase scheduled sometime down the line.

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