Monday 21 March 2022

Dauntless Windbound ARK

Three games on lost lands.

ARK Survival Evolved

In this multiplayer game players must first find or create a server to play on which can either be PvE or PvP. Once you create some degree of horrible looking character you spawn on an island teeming with decent looking dinosaurs who you can later click bash to hunt (good luck). As a survival game you will be focused primarily on gathering, hunting and crafting. Unfortunately there interface is terrible and there's no real tutorial that even tells you that you need to punch trees to get wood to make an axe (to again, get wood). And somehow pterodactyl things like stealing your pants. What? It definitely lost my interest at that point.

Dinos are pretty big.


This survival game is far better in the crafting and collecting side than Ark. In it, you play as a woman stuck in a strange ocean dotted with islands that you need to explore to unlock the gateway to the next set of islands. Building is very intuitive and easy as components are labelled appropriately. Want a gorehorn crest? Kill a gorehorn. Combat is still a bit clunky but it's better than ARK, and building and sailing a boat is great. Now is a good time to mention that this is single player only though, and if you don't like sailing or the idea of having to tack against the wind it's best to avoid this.


This PvE focused MMO takes place in a broken world where everyone lives on flying islands which gives the nice excuse of making everything instanced. Because some big monster once threatened a village everyone now goes and hunts them as the national past time using a variety of traditional hunting weapons including swords, chained sickles, and brass knuckles - then once you harvest your kill you use its guts to make better gear to hunt bigger monsters and so on.

This is the first game I've played that has no gender selection in the character creator which was new and it also has an interesting take on quest grinding using its bounty system. While there are some NPCs that do give you quests most of your progress will be from these bounties that you yourself design from simple multiple choice. Be rewarded for killing 3 things with an axe? Or killing 6 things with anything? You can customize three of these to be active at any one time.

The best part of the game is its naturally cooperative especially on harder islands where beasties (or events with beasties) really need hunt teams and in an example of excellent design - you don't need to bring one yourself. In my experience somehow people just naturally show up where they are needed as rewards are mostly shared. Definitely my favorite of this bunch, because of the cooperative aspect AND because it's not a survival game (no food meter). It is severely lacking in story though, but that doesn't stop people from just going out and killing things.

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