Even survivalists need their downtime, to relax sometimes. What better way than to grab a good survival game and spend a few hours crafting, hunting, surviving and so on in a virtual world? More than this, computer games are starting to become a popular way of training the mind for specific survival and disaster scenarios. For survivalists, it is not only entertaining, but it can open your mind to the real possibilities of what might happen during a long-term disaster or crisis situation.
In a study by the University of Rochester, researchers found that playing video games was an effective training regimen for speeding up reactions in many types of real-life situations. Further-more according to research published in Psychological Science, playing action-based video games can boost the players’ visuomotor-control skills.
In fact, the U.S. military has even encouraged its troops to play first-person shooter style games as a way to maintain combat readiness, when not on active duty. So there can be real life benefits to survival games other than relaxation and fun.
This is a hand picked list and review of the more popular survival games being played right now, in 2020. These survival games have been reviewed on PC, however some of them are also available for PS4 and Xbox One.
Green Hell strives to always keep you completely engaged in every aspect of Survival. Time Management, Risk Management are the top factors of game play here. What is crucial, is that it is not repetitive or simply crafting. Every moment of game play gets you closer to feeling like you are truly learning and gaining experience in surviving the Jungle.
- Beautiful graphics
- Amazing realism, true to the survivalism
- The mental health implementation is very good! The voices are disturbing as hell, very well done.
- Crafting systems are nice
- Scary ambient and atmosphere, well made and thought out.
- Lots of stuff to work around with to make shelters, weapons and so on.
- Hunting, Harvesting, Mining, Building, you name it.
- Even features diseases that need treatment
- Aiming feels a little inconsistent, especially when using spears / axes, could also use some work.
- Game needs pretty recent, good hardware to run smoothly.
- You get quite a couple of notification icons that are not explained. I didn’t get why my health kept declining that fast, and why I had to eat so much. I had a stomach icon with a number on it. 20-something. I thought it was the number of days I had gone without fulfilling my macronutrients. Seems like it was the number of parasites. Yuck.
- Could use more animals on land and water.
It’s truly a fantastic experience for anyone that’s looking for a serious survival adventure that pushes your abilities of thought and reason. It’s not for the faint of heart or the impatient. I’m not even sure it can be classed as a game. Simulator is a far more accurate description.
My score for this game: 92/100
>> Get the PC key to play Green Hell now.
Ark: Survival Evolved
As a person stranded naked, freezing and starving on the shores of a mysterious island called ARK, you must hunt, harvest resources, craft items, grow crops, research technologies, and build shelters to withstand the elements. Dinosaurs and primitive creatures are roaming the land.
This is a sandbox game, without a linear goal to the game.
• Open World
• Weapons ranging from spears, to rocket launchers, and turrets
• Weather System
• Crafting system
• Consistent updates
• Day/Night Cycle
• Ton of skills to master
• Base building
• Grouping/Spawning System
• You can tame/ride dinosaurs
• Steam workshop
• Selfie/Orbit Cam so you can look at yourself
• You can host Servers and have access to console commands
• 3rd person (Can be accessed on servers that have it enabled)
• Requires a very decent PC to achieve stable FPS
• Dinosaurs hover on certain terrain (Very minor)
• Dinosaurs need pathfinding work
• Chance of spawning on a hostile dinosaur, killing you upon spawn
• WARNING: Hackers
• Terrible optimization for full priced game. Especially if you buy it knowing you have an outdated graphics card.
• Developers provide little or no customer support
ARK: Survival Evolved is an amazing game for us survivalists to play. It has some bugs and issues, but enjoyable overall. It gets your heart pumping when you have a lot to lose.
My score for this game: 73/100
>> Get the PC key to play ARK: Survival Evolved now.
The only aim in Rust is to survive. To do this you will need to overcome struggles such as hunger, thirst and cold. Build a fire. Build a shelter. Kill animals for meat. Protect yourself from other players, and kill them for meat. Create alliances with other players and form a town.
• Clean menu
• Players can host their own servers off their computers for free, or pay to have it hosted on a local server
• Intricate base building system
• Day/Night Cycle
• Weather System
• Frequent updates and Dev blogs
• Procedural generated world
• Gives you a sense of paranoia
• Generated Biomes (Desert, Snow, Grass)
• Game tends to lag/rubber-band if too many people are connected to the server
• Uses a lot of RAM
• Easy to get killed on sight (Really depends on the person, but what do you expect?)
• VoIP needs work (Causes a second or two of lag after letting go of the VoIP key)
• Framerate/Crashing issues on AMD cards (Mainly on the R9 290)
• Runs on the Unity engine (Making it not the best for optimization, but the dev team is managing)
• Animals don’t follow rules of physics. (They will run up walls if they feel like it)
Rust can be a very fun survival game, especially with friends. Rust can sometimes feel very slow pace on the official servers. Overall, if you are a survivalist and if you have the money, I would suggest looking into buying this game.
My score for this game: 70/100
>> Get the PC key to play Rust now.
Brave the elements with friends or alone as you gather the necessities to survive, grow and defend your place amongst Hurtworld’s unforgiving environment. Populated by fierce creatures, rich resources and ever evolving challenges, Hurtworld is an immersive multiplayer experience.
• Very clean menu
• Spawn protection
• Forever growing crafting/cooking system
• Weirdly satisfying graphics
• Base Building
• Melee Weapons & Guns
• Very smooth and easy to run (Never get frame drops unless it’s server side. Constant 45-60fps+)
• Various biomes all containing different animals/materials (Some biomes have more of one thing than others)
• Weather system (Rain/Sun/Dust Storms etc.) All of which effects characters stability
• Driveable cars (Find the car chassis on the map and apply wheels/motor accessories) Remember to make some gas!
• Consistent updates
• Moddable custom servers
• Online livemap to see your character and any friends (Those familiar with Rust already know what this is)
• High pop servers tend to have minor lag. Not enough to actually leave the server, but it’s there
• Average graphics
• The voice that plays to indicate you’re hungry, or full, can get annoying. Sounds like it was recorded on a cheap mic. I don’t get it.
• You keep your clothing and hotbar items upon death (Might be different on some servers)
If you are looking for a new survival game to get into, Hurtworld is where it’s at. It took me a while to enjoy it. Once you really get into it, things get intense pretty quick. I would recommend this game to anyone who likes the survival type genre.
My score for this game: 65/100
>> Get the PC key to play Hurtworld now.
This War of Mine
This War of Mine makes you in charge of a group of interconnected lives. However, the circumstances under which you’re steering these characters’ existence is the big difference. Here, you are playing god in the middle of a war.
• Hunger System
• Happiness System (Happy, Sad, Depressed, etc)
• Weapons (Melee/Ranged)
• Gives you moral choices to make, effecting chances of your survival
• Strictly Click to move (Would have been nice if they added a WASD option)
This War of Mine is an amazing platform game. No zombies, no crazy aliens, just people, dealing with other people in need, or looking for trouble. The game does not make it easy to survive. Do you use the little wood you got on that loot run for a bed? Or do you use it to burn on the stove to cook your food so you do not get sick? Every little choice leads up to your survival or death. Truly an amazing game.
My score for this game: 87/100
>> Get the PC key to play This War of Mine now.
Want to say your opinion of these survival games? Or maybe your favourite survival game did not make this list? Feel free to leave comments below.