Die Young (PC) Review with stream
Being hunted feels right
The island looks great
Die Young is a title that was in early access for a rather long time, and during that journey it managed to pick itself a rather large fan following. It is a mix of first person survival, adventure, horror, and platforming. All of which is set on a beautiful tropical island. What the game gained through its journey through early access might be questioned, as not all of the formula always seems to balance.
When Die Young works well, poking around the island and simply trying to live moment to moment and figure out why someone drugged the player character and dropped them in a well, are the moments that the game shines. When something jumps out of the tall sunflowers, or the player sees something in the distance and an instance choice must be made if it is either going to be confronted or it is simply not worth the risk and fleeing. The game hands this out wonderfully and makes the player feel like there is a terrifying world out there that needs to be discovered.
The problem becomes that every other area that is discovered wants some kind of platforming done in it. In some games this wouldn’t be a problem, as those games are designed around the platforming. This is more of a first person open world game, though. It has massive issues, not only showing the next objective, but also the margin of error that it allows when jumping around for a safe landing–this makes it painfully annoying as there is no quick save and areas must be hiked back to for additional attempts to be made.
Probably the worst offense, though, is the lack of effective tutorials. They are present, and give a form of information; the aforementioned blocks of information do not always relate to things that the player might consider helpful or allow them to continue in a meaningful direction. Some people might like this approach as the game is heavy on the survival aspect of things, but for everyone else it can seem lacking and confusing. The crafting system is a perfect example of the issue, in that the game states that new recipes might be found but only after playing for sometime and digging through some menus. Die Young is actually a very interesting and immersive game. Living on the island is interesting, and the environment itself looks amazing. The problems start when the game seems to start cramming in genres that don’t really fit with the rest of the game. The fear of being hunted by insane people, all the time needing to find food and water is truly interesting; but adding platforming into the mix just simply breaks any flow that the game had going at that moment. If that can be overlooked the game is a wonderful jem. If it can’t, it can easily be overlooked.