After watching a few Project Gorgon videos last week, I couldn’t stand to not be playing this game. I’d been pretty good for a while there, steadfastly ignoring it while alpha development continued and the wait for the Steam release (whenever that’s supposed to be) drew near. I figure that the Steam release should represent the game at an… established point of development and a good place to start playing in earnest.
But you know how it is when you start hearing about something and then get to thinking about it a lot and then start obsessing about it. You find yourself devoid of all willpower and logging in anyway.
So that’s what happened this past weekend: I logged in and created a new Project Gorgon character. The compromise that I established with myself (ahaha) was that I would only explore the newbie island for now, which would accomplish two things:
- Giving me a taste of the game to satisfy without diving in fully
- Artificially pacing myself so that I genuinely explore the island without trying to rush through it
I feel like this is a good approach, at least for now. The starter island is brand-new to me, as the last time I was playing the beginner experience was confined to a notoriously ugly and somewhat confusing cave. This is… so much better, friends. So much better.
It’s not all completely new, as the cave’s various mechanics have been spread out over the island. There’s still an Elf in need of cheering up, there’s still a boss that makes your head super-sized, and there is still the option to collect 10 or so starter skills. However, having it spread out over a fully-explorable (and strangely square) island offers players a lot more freedom and is much more in line with Project Gorgon’s vision of being an exploration-centered game. Besides, it doesn’t really matter where you start exploring, because sooner or later you’re going to need to comb the entire island to figure out how to get off.
I’m loving my little bite-sized Gorgon sessions. I log in, putter around in a particular area, take notes (particularly if there does end up being a wipe — I know he said not, but devs do change their minds in the pre-launch environment), fight, loot, and see what there is to see. My quest log is made up of my own objectives: I need ingredients to make a pick-me-up potion for the Elf, I need to raise favor with a beach girl, I want to level up my unarmed skill, I want to collect all of the crafting recipes that I can, and I need to kill that boss to get a small head again. Stuff like that.
The loot is surprisingly fun, too. I’ve gotten a few really great drops for armor, and my favorite trinket is this orb that floats around my head to provide extra light for dark environments. I can see that being helpful.
This past weekend the dev triggered one of the new “events” — in this case, a bonus health/first aid effectiveness buff for everyone. That was certainly helpful, as some of the mobs can take a player down quickly. I got tag-teamed by a wizard skeleton and a raptor at one point, panicked and died without putting up much of a fight at all. Good times. So happy to be back.