Review: The Forest (PlayStation 4)

As the lone survivor of a passenger jet crash, you find yourself in a mysterious forest battling to stay alive against a society of cannibalistic mutants. Build, explore, survive in this terrifying first person survival horror simulator.

Pros:

  • Glorious graphics.
  • 4.54GB Download size.
  • Options- Toggle/hold, Regrowing trees, Building destruction and performance mode on/off.
  • Uses DS4 speaker.
  • Four difficulties- Normal, Hard, Survival and peaceful.
  • Online- Create or join. Friends only option. Uses an invite system.
  • Survival gameplay.
  • First person camera.
  • Clear HUD that shows hunger/health/water/stamina and all displayed in a way that is easy to understand.
  • Possible to save at houses/huts. You can also skip to the morning after a set time here. You still lose food and water doing it to keep it all balanced.
  • Touchpad used as a button for inventory. Clever layout as it launches a mat that has all collected items on it, You can then easily add/combine items into the middle of the mat.
  • Day/Night cycle including weather such as rain, High wind, and thunderstorms.
  • Spawn point randomizes every game.
  • Survival book- a Dedicated resource that gives you recipes for crafting. Simply select the thing you want to build, Brings up an outline of the structure and you then place that and then add the materials into it.
  • The game does indeed have a story and puts tasks within your survival guide.
  • Hot and cold system is in play as well as food and thirst.
  • Night time really is pure darkness.
  • Horror atmosphere.
  • Full cave system with many rooms/routes and entrances to find.
  • Map fills out as you play.
  • Lore is all over the place to find.
  • You start with a multi-tool that can hack down trees and attack.
  • Massive open playground.
  • Such a survival atmosphere to it all.
  • Island is inhabited by these weird mutants and they can be heard communicating or laughing as you play. Catch glimpses of them as you walk around, They can attack you if provoked.
  • Find old settlements and towns.
  • Extensive crafting system where you can make bows arrows, Torches, new weapons and tools, and that’s before you get to the buildings, You can build your typical things like huts and fires built in here you can also build a full town of tree houses! It is insane how much is on offer.
  • Build traps and defenses to stop intruders.
  • You have a lighter to use for lighting fires and also acts as a torch at night. You cannot use it indefinitely as it gets too hot.
  • In co-op, both players can see the shopping list for buildings and tasks.
  • When placing items in the combine part, You get a pop up of possible combos.
  • Co-op really elevates the game to new levels.
  • Cool intro to the story of the game.
  • Controls are very easy to pick up.
  • Such a sense of adventure and exploration.

Cons:

  • Single player and multiplayer saves are separate.
  • Very basic menus.
  • Long load times especially when joining or setting up online games.
  • Has a weird delay in updating your survival book.
  • Random crashes including a blue screen.
  • No rejoin option in mp.
  • Peaceful is pointless really. No enemies to fight.
  • it is always 50/50 if player lists are synced in regards to building lists and survival books which is annoying.
  • Frequent weird glitches and clipping.
  • Could never find a wayu to drop items for each player.
  • No game settings like day/night cycle times or regrow times etc.

  • 9/10
    Graphics - 9/10
  • 9/10
    Sound - 9/10
  • 9/10
    Accessability - 9/10
  • 9/10
    Length - 9/10
  • 10/10
    Fun Factor - 10/10
9.2/10

Summary

On the surface, the Forest looks like another indie developed survival game in the vein of Minecraft. Ok so I suppose in a way it is, You spend all day building things then defend yourself at night. The difference here, of course, is the game looks really good and the enemies are both physically and physiologically dangerous. They can be seen just watching you work or laugh maniacally as you carry a log home, Its a really creepy atmosphere and one that always has you on edge. All this and its before you hit night time or even find a cave, For the cave is just a labyrinth of rooms and tunnels. You can find sweet loot but you can also find danger or run out of light and lose everything. I loved every minute of the game and got a lot more out of it in co op as you work together to build your own Ewok village up in the trees, The sense of discovery was very rewarding. Every bit of loot you found was memorable, You can drink from lakes, Hack down berries and build so many things its crazy. So for all this, I am just left to say that don’t judge it on the description, The game really brings the tension and fear needed for a survival game, It is well made and well presented and play it with friends, Survival is always fun when a friend can laugh or scream as you die.

Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!

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