Let’s see if I can find a good way to describe Don’t Starve. If Minecraft played a little Barry White for Silent Hill, fired up a few candles, and gave it that special kind of sweet sweet lovin’, nine months later you’d end up with the tiny bundle of joy that is Don’t Starve. Now Klei Entertainment’s little indie love child has made its way to the PlayStation 4 with Don’t Starve: Console Edition. Be forewarned, though. In Don’t Starve, it’s not a matter of if you’ll die … but how long you’ll last before you do.
The game begins with Wilson, “The Gentleman Scientist”, failing in his most recent round of experiments. When a mysterious voice calls out to him, promising forbidden knowledge, Wilson excitedly accepts the offer. After powering up the strange machine he was compelled to build for the voice, shadows reach out from the darkness for Wilson, dragging him away as he blacks out. Waking up in a strange land, Wilson has only one option: Survive.
As Wilson (or later, other unlock-able characters), you start off with nothing but his wits and will. By gathering basic resources, you’ll be able to craft some makeshift tools, such as axes and torches, which you can then use to get better resources, so you can build better even better tools, all to improve your chances of survival. You’ll need to scrape up some scraps of food along the way (the game IS called “Don’t Starve”, after all). Oh, and you’ll need to get all of the done before nightfall, because when the sun goes down, all manner of evil creatures creep out from the shadows.
Don’t Starve is all about trial and error. Every time you die in the game and are forced to start over, you’ll learn how to improve your chances of survival the next time around. Plus, despite having to start from scratch every time you die, you’ll still earn XP which unlocks new playable characters with new abilities. That may come as little solace at the start, when you find yourself constantly kicking the bucket over silly mistakes. In time, though, you start to get into a groove and learn the rhythm of the world around you. Before long, your two day survival streak will turn into a week, then two weeks, then a month or more.
Don’t Starve is one of those games that can be frustratingly difficult, but never so much so that you just want to give up. Instead, each restart serves as motivation, leaving you with that feeling of “I’ll do better THIS time” … and most of the time, you do. Part sim, part horror, part action, part adventure … there’s a little bit of everything here. If you’re hungry for entertainment, then Don’t Starve will definitely satisfy your hunger.
Publisher: Klei Entertainment
Developer: Klei Entertainment
Genre: Action Adventure
Platform: PlayStation 4
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone) 10+