I’ve been playing this game since, like, more than half a year ago; but didn’t really have the chance to publish a review until now. Orzz… actually, more like, the draft was just there but kept getting buried and pushed down by the others. (ಠʖ̯ಠ) Ehehehehe ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Anywaaay, going back to the review proper.
Survive – Wilderness Survival, or [as I’d like to call] SWS for short, is a free simulation downloadable in Google Play. As its title suggests, it’s a wilderness survival simulation game. Yey~
I don’t know how close this is to real life situations though. I’m no outdoor-sy person, more so a survival expert, so as to the concept-technical comments or critics, I’m afraid you can’t find one in this review. All I can say is that, in the perspective of a simple person with no survival experiences but yearn adventure, this game is fun! It’s a good recommendation; hence, this review in hopes that, in my own way, I’d be able to spread awareness and give this game some attention that it deserves.
The game has two scenarios you can choose from. The first is kinda like the normal surviving mode. Your boat capsized while you were out canoeing. So, you have no other choice but to survive through the forest ’til you get to the nearest town N miles from where you are.
The other one, however, introduces a few additional handicaps, so it’s a bit hard. First, it’s a mountain range scenario. Sooo… rocks! Rocks and rocks everywhere~ Unlike the first scenario, it’s hard to find water! Moreover, you need to set up shelter all the time! There are no trees to shield you esp. when it rains, you are high up and the mountain gets cold almost immediately at night. Lastly, you are fucking injured!
Now, while the injury part is a pretty challenging handicap, it is also one of the most annoying. Esp. when applied on a mountain range scenario where most of your stops are barren rocks~ (unless you have compass)! Other than it slowing down your progress, it does not help that it also limits your gathering of supplies like wood and berries, as well as limit the cargo that you can carry on your pack. And that is a big thing! Esp. when you have nothing left on your pack but the very important supplies, and even that you are forced to drop because you can no longer carry that amount of weight! °(ಗдಗ。)°
Suffice to say, my first few tries with this mode were really…… °(ಗдಗ。)°. I died almost always just within a few hours. °(ಗдಗ。)° °(ಗдಗ。)° °(ಗдಗ。)° Even until now, I haven’t fully mastered the mountain range scenario. There are still a lot of instances where I die before reaching the nearest town. It goes without saying I haven’t even tried the difficult mode of mountain range~ Yes, there’s an even more difficult mode! huhuhuhu
Anywaay~ I still love this game though. While it is hard, it isn’t impossible to clear. It’s challenging, and the challenge is fun and addicting. Idk if it’s just me, maybe? Since I’m a very big fan of simulations. And though I may not be that sporty kinda person, or the outdoor/extremist type, I yearn for adventure and hike out on nearby mountains on the rare occasions that I’m free. So this game is a very big plus on my book.
This game kinda reminds me of Oregon Trail tbh. In fact, imo, it’s the closest adventure-type simulation to Oregon trail than any other of its genre. Maybe because the setting is the wild? Plus, you get to experience the trail firsthand! Although, main differences are: in SWS, you don’t have the privilege to buy supplies at the start, (2) there is no definite trail, (3) you’re alone, and (4) you don’t have town stops to replenish lost supplies. All of which makes SWS riveting and unique in its own imo! :>>
I really have no major complaints for this game. I know the visuals aren’t much. It’s actually very simple, very practical. But I think that’s better. It’s pretty monochromatic but the background does change accordingly to the basic description of the location/topology you’re currently in. So, as to that, it is good enough for me.
Below is an example UI of the game. This is DAY 1 of the canoe scenario:
I don’t know if I have any rights to say this (since, as mentioned, I really haven’t even mastered all the modes). But these are some of the good practices I developed/some observations I had in-game, and maybe can help some of the beginners out there in playing this.
(1) The supplies
Firstly, like most survival games I’ve played, the one most important thing you have to note esp. at the start is: (1) your supplies, the ones you currently have and the things you’ll need, and (2) your surroundings, ones you’re currently in, and worst case scenarios you’ll be in later.
For that, in this game, it is best that, at the start, you go check out your supplies at once and note on the things you have, and their basic uses. In SWS, there are some initial supplies that are useless in their current form, but can be further broken down and converted to some more useful forms. For materials like these, craft them immediately! Some of them doesn’t take time so it’s good to do it at the start.
For example, that survival manual in your pack is useless (though read it first since it also contains a few basic survival stuffs / tips for the game but afterwards, yup, it basically just takes space and nothing more). However, the paper there can be broken down to make tinder. And by tinder, I’m not referring to the tinder with the T; rather, the common noun tinder that can be used to start up a fire, and the fire in the literal sense. They are either paper or dried wood that easily ignites. Please note on this. It is important.
Check on your food supply situation, esp. water. In addition to looking through your inventory, it is also good to familiarise yourself with the crafting menu — look at the things you can craft, the importance of these tools, and the materials needed to craft them.
By the way, before the game begins, I forgot to mention you have the option to specifically choose two additional supplies you can carry. Otherwise, if you’re undecided what material to get, system will choose two at random. Idk if this is the best option but, for me, I’ve always chosen outdoor knife and heat pack/paracord bracelet as my additional two-starter packs. Outdoor knife is very useful, esp. for crafting and in setting up camp. Paracord bracelet can come in handy with things like that as well — setting up camp, using to tie stuffs — it basically acts as rope, or even stronger than rope. And then, there’s the heat pack for some occasions you can’t gather wood and have to stay warm.
(2) Watch out for: Heat Index and Water
You can survive days without food. But you cannot survive days without water. More so in the cold for too long. They are usually emphasised in Health classes, and also mentioned in Biology or Gen. Science. Suffice to say, I think that is common knowledge.
That said, it is very important for you to note on these things.
Rather than rushing to your goal, i.e. getting to the nearby town, it’s good to just travel a few miles and use the remaining daylight you have left gathering woods and other supplies to keep you warm and good in the night. Esp. if you’ve stopped near a creek, it’s better for you to even stay a few days to catch up on your health/supply/strength.
For Heat Index:
Anyway, as mentioned, use your daytime to gather as much wood as you can. You need these woods in setting up shelter, creating fire, crafting supplies and setting traps for your game. The first two is very important.
In the canoe mode, it is manageable even with just fire, i.e. without setting up shelter. I think it’s because there are trees to shield you and stuffs. However, in the mountain range scenario, set up shelter immediately all the time (and while it’s still daylight too!). Just starting up a fire is not enough. You need shelter to keep you warm, esp. since it gets pretty cold in the mountains plus you’re injured so you’re a bit weak. lol
In addition to building shelter, another thing you need to set up before it gets dark is fire. At night, it’ll be harder due to lack of vision. You’re chances of even starting one is nigh impossible, esp. when you have no outdoor knife and your energy is zero.
There are a lot of ways to start fire, below are the two ways that I know of (and arranged from fastest to not):
- Using magnesium fire starter, butane lighter, or matches (duh)
- Using fire plow or bow drill
NOTE: Your matches, butane and magnesiums are limited. So it’s also best that you craft fire plows / bow drills at the start. In my opinion, fire plow > bow drill. This is because (1) you only need wood to make fire plow, and (2) idk if it’s just me but… it was faster to start the fire using fire plow than bow drill. I dunno why though. Also, like the note I had earlier, you need tinder to start the fire. Not wood! Wood is just for prolonging the fire.
Water is very important. Water is life. Below are a few ways to find / gather water:
- Setting up a rain-catcher to collect rain water is the safest and fastest way to get water. You can drink it immediately without boiling it. However, it only rains occasionally in-game, and even more rarely in mountain range mode.
- If you’re nearby a creek or free-flowing water, better. You get unlimited supply. Just boil them before drinking. Esp. when your energy and health is low, drinking unsafe water would just plunge you to death immediately instead of helping you recover.
- Through water puddles. You can find one by exploring your current area. Though it just fills one bottle at most. Still better have something than nothing. Also, and most importantly on this kind of water source, boil first before drinking.
(3) Note on other things (like getting food):
Since I tend to deplete my energies to zero, I cannot hunt. Orz… more like, I still can but it’s pretty useless anyway since, with low energy, I’ll just lose my game. Thus, my main line for food supply is setting traps instead. And depending on the kind of trap, you might need ropes and woods (having bait is a given).
BAIT: In the case where you find questionable mushrooms, insects like crickets and similar stuffs while out exploring, it’s better to crumble them to bait rather than eat them imo. On the few instances I ate them, all I got is a stomach ache instead and my health plunging to a pitiable state. Totally vexing.
FISHING vs SPEARFISHING: When you noticed you had the option to go fishing (i.e. with a fishing rod and hook), GO! Most of the time, the kind of fish you get is a big one, enough to skyrocket your energies to the 1000s. Spearfishing on the other hand only give you small fishes.
CRAFTING: If you have no knife, and you have bones or a can lid, immediately craft a bone knife or a can knife! They are very useful crafting tools. Also, as mentioned earlier, it’s best you craft a fire drill at the start too! If you have plenty of ropes, make a bag to increase space. These are the things you need to craft and absolutely must not disassemble later (well, unless you’re really low on space, you can break apart your fire drill and just recraft one at your camp).
Depends on the situation, in the mountain range scenario, craft a walking stick to aid you (since you’re injured + walking sticks are useful assisting tools in rocky/mountainous trails). If you have birch bark, you can use it as torch for exploring at night.
The game can be downloadable in Google Play. You can search it up yourself or click me to take you to the page. It doesn’t take much space. According to my Application Manager, it only takes about 67.35MB, and can even be moved to SD card in case your default phone memory is full.
Overall, it’s a simple but addicting game you might want to check (esp. for adventure simulation lovers out there). I only play this offline; so while there is an online mode, I don’t really know what it does, or the differences in game offers.