Game Review: Day One: Garry’s Incident / Developer: Wild Games Studio / Publisher: Wild Games Studio / Platform: PC Game / Release Date: Out Now
We have seen some truly dire titles over 2013. From Gearbox’s betrayal of the Alien franchise with Colonial Marines to the truly dire Ride to Hell: Retribution, we have seen the worst of the worst over the last year. Day One: Garry’s Incident only continues that trend, proving itself to be an unstable, poorly programmed, badly animated, bug-ridden open world survival game.
For as little as it matters, you play as an alcoholic pilot named Garry Friedman. Between drowning his sorrows over his dead family, he spends time shifting cargo for whoever will pay him until an erupting volcano causes him to crash in the Amazon. With some very strange goings on, and managing to gain an ancient Mayan laser cannon, he sets out to survive in the jungle. With a synopsis divided between B-movie cheese and sincere storytelling, it’s about as well thought out as the gameplay.
Almost everything about the game speaks of inexperience, and Wild Games’ ambition exceeding their skill. Poorly thought out choices like relentless quick time events are added to give a sense of realism but end up turning healing/panther fighting into a tedious chore. Furthermore, the health system seemingly means nothing, giving you no indication of how much damage you can truly take. Full health can mean anything to taking multiple blows without flinching to keeling over upon stumbling upon the glowing eyed natives of Arrakis who’ve somehow ended up in the rainforest. This is only somewhat offset by the horrible detection, with crouching turning Garry all but invisible to everything around him, no matter what he does.
Any survival themes are made difficult as a result of poor design. The feeling of survival and experimentation is undermined by the easily found recipes and ability to harvest only from certain creatures. Panther meat? Fine for some reason. Parrots and monkeys? Inedible. Items from humans? Good luck picking them up. Along with the jumping ability of the average Call of Duty soldier, Garry can find himself in a featureless void upon reloading saves or have everyone around him suddenly die for no reason.
The real name in the coffin when it comes to immersion is the visual quality. While textures and the lush environment seem fine, stiff, repetitive and mechanical animations and terrible physics doom the game’s combat to unintentional hilarity.
With poor AI, terrible bugs, bad programming and an idea which was clearly beyond the dev team, Day One: Garry’s Incident is a cautionary example of knowing one’s limits. There’s nothing here worth your money, skip it and get something else.
Day One: Garry’s Incident is available on Steam.