Signs of Life (Sweet Dog Studios)

Facebook
Like Signs of Life on Facebook

Twitter 
Follow Signs of Life on Twitter

Website
Check out the official Signs of Life Website

Discussion
Give the developers feedback on the Steam Discussion Page

Purchase
Buy your Early Access copy on the Steam Store page 

Signs of Life is a science fiction themed sandbox title with a emphasis on survival. At the start of the game, your lone survivor lands his escape pod on an alien world and it is your job to help him stay alive. The genre already has big hitters like Terraria and Starbound, so we were curious to see what Signs of Life had to offer.

The game combines hand-crafted and procedurally generated content with some very nice looking results. The alien planet that you land on is actually a hospitable looking place and has a range of strange, as well as familiar, creatures roaming about. I was surprised to see some chickens and sheep, but it’s nice that not everything in the area immediately wants to chew your face off.

As the game is still in Alpha a more extensive prologue is planned to teach you the ropes, but the “AGIS personal assistant” built into your MEG tool has some hints to get you up and running. Your goal is to explore the planet, gather resources and craft the equipment that you need to survive. There are also some story elements woven through everything as you will discover structures and equipment that were mysteriously abandoned by their occupants.

The multifunctional MEG tool that you start out with is quite nifty as it has the ability to light up your surroundings, project a map of areas you have explored and mine resources from a distance. I also like how you have to manually select which objects you want to collect, instead of everything you walk over just appearing in your inventory. Speaking of the inventory, this game uses a bag and container system similar to classic games such as the Ultima series, which is pretty cool.

The visuals are pretty colorful and I particularly liked the bone based animation system. Any equipment you craft is also shown on your character so if you cobble together some armor out of bits of wood and string, expect to look a little silly. New crafting recipes are unlocked by gathering resources or crafting other items and there are already a lot of things you can create at this stage of development. Working your way up from kicking enemies to crafting melee weapons and eventually guns is very satisfying and we look forward to seeing what else the developers are going to come up with. One of the recent updates added a neat dodge roll which makes combat even more dynamic.

While Signs of Life doesn’t have a multiplayer feature yet, it is in the pipeline and will definitely be added to the game. The developers are also taking their time to properly implement a playable female character and polish up the audio with some more sound effects. Even after putting in quite a few hours on other games in the genre, Signs of Life still felt fresh enough to keep us coming back for more. The developers are pretty committed to creating a great game and have already added a ton of new content with each update. The genre might be getting pretty crowded, but it would be a mistake to overlook Signs of Life.

Related posts

Press X to Not Die

Press X to Not Die

Combining quick time events with nothing more than full motion videos sound like a recipe for disaster and yet Press X Not To Die is way more fun than it has any right to be. Designed to be a throwback to the “interactive movie” titles of the early 90s, the game throws you headfirst into what seems to be a zombie apocalypse. The whole town is in chaos, people are viciously attacking each other and the only advice you got from a friend before he is murdered is to “press X not to die.”

FortressCraft Evolved (ProjectorGames)

After a very successful run on the Xbox 360, FortressCraft is now available on PC in an "Evolved" form. The developers have recreated the game in Unity and while it is still in Early Access it is clear to see that this is going to be a very ambitious title. To make things a bit more tempting the game is available for a very low price which will gradually increase up to the final retail price as milestones are met so jump in early to save some cash.

Soul Axiom (Wales Interactive)

Soul Axiom (Wales Interactive)

With Master Reboot already under their belt Wales Interactive knows a thing or two about first person science fiction adventures. They also have a penchant for the mysterious as demonstrated by their latest title, Soul Axiom. The game appears to be a spiritual successor to Master Reboot as it also explores the theme of souls uploaded to a massive server where memories are stored for all eternity. This time though the server is called Elysia and you have to figure out the identity of your character and what their story is.

Radial-G : Racing Revolved (Tammeka Games)

Radial-G : Racing Revolved (Tammeka Games)

The phrase “anti-gravity racing” might be synonymous with the Wipeout series, but the demise of Studio Liverpool (Psygnosis) left a void in the market. Surprisingly enough, no developers seemed very eager to pick up the gauntlet until Tammeka Games revealed Radial-G: Racing Revolved. There are some very talented and experienced individuals behind this title, so we jumped at the chance to check out the Early Access version of the game.

All-Star Fruit Racing (3DClouds)

All-Star Fruit Racing (3DClouds)

From Nintendo and Sony to Sega and Konami, there was a time where every developer with a semi decent roster of recognizable characters felt the need to shoehorn their mascots into a kart racing game. Some were good, some not, but the most memorable ones were usually the games featuring well-known characters. 3DClouds, an Italian indie developer doesn’t have the luxury of banking on familiar faces for their title, All-Star Fruit Racing, as it is their debut title. However, this doesn’t mean that the game isn’t worth a closer look as even though it is still an Early Access title, it already impresses.

Steam Bandits: Outpost (Iocaine Studios)

Steam Bandits: Outpost (Iocaine Studios)

Some Facebook games can actually be quite fun until you encounter the horrible, soul-grinding mechanics that have been implemented to part you with your money. Turn limits, harassing friends, purchasing crucial items with real money and more is enough to deter anyone from playing these games. Steam Bandits: Outpost is a game that aims to take the best elements of the Facebook-style games while stripping away all the annoyances.

Leave a comment

14 − 11 =