In a battle royale world where Fortnite and Apex Legend remain on top, it begs the question, is there room for another battle royale game? The answer is yes. Darwin Project could be the new Fortnite or Apex Legend with the right support behind the game just as Epic Studios has done with Fortnite and Respawn with Apex Legend.
Darwin Project takes place in a dystopian post-apocalyptic snowy landscape. As preparation for an impending ice age, a new project, half science experiment, half live-entertainment, is launched. Players can choose to play as a male or female prisoner and are dropped into an arena, initially armed with only an axe and a bow, and have to gather resources and survive along with nine others. Players must craft items and upgrade their weapons by collecting wood or darwinium in order to survive and fight until only one player remains, winning the game.
Darwin Project is a unique battle royale that stands apart from most other battle royale games. Instead of the usual 100 players dropped into one giant map, Darwin Project only has 10 players for quicker matches and more intense one vs one matches. All 10 players are dropped into a map where the terrain is a snowy environment. Not only are you trying to survive being killed by other people, but you also have to make sure that throughout the match you are keeping yourself warm by creating fire using darwinium. The most unique thing by Darwin Project is the 11th player added to the game as the all-seeing eye known as the “show director.” The show director can view all the players and manipulate the outcome of the match. The show director has the ability to close zones, give extra darwinium to specific players, nuke zones to instantly kill players there, and has other abilities. It’s a blast being in both roles as a player or show director.
Darwin Project has been in early access since 2018 on PC and Xbox One and has gone through significant gameplay changes throughout the two-year span it’s been out. In this recent official release for the PlayStation 4, it is the best the game has ever felt. It’s eovlved from a slow, steady pace to now fast-paced, always on the move gameplay. Before jumping into the match, you have three classes to choose from: jet wings, grapple gauntlet, and headhunter drone. Each class has unique abilities tailored to your class choice. While playing you’ll be equipped with a bow and an axe. The axe will be your primary weapon and your bow is a secondary weapon starting out with only two arrows. In order to create more ammo, players need to collect wood to craft more arrows or craft armor to help gain an edge in one on one battles. You can upgrade your axe with darwinium to cause more damage to your opponents or upgrade class abilities.
Darwin Project is a breath of fresh air in the battle royale space and has a lot of good ideas with tight gameplay mechanics behind it especially with the 11th player as the show director. At the moment of official release its still missing key elements to gameplay modes. You can only play alone at the moment as there isn’t an option to have teammates. Another feature missing is a battle pass as most BRs have one to incentivize players to play the game to earn awesome skins and items along the way. Speaking of items and skins, Darwin Project seems very underwhelming with its limited number of skins. Hopefully that will change over time as the game continues growing.