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Do you have what it takes to survive Survarium?

The new free-to-play massively multiplayer online, first-person shooter, role-playing hybrid, Survarium, will challenge players on multiple levels. You will be tested on character development through reputation building, your survival instincts will be stretched to its limit and you better know how to handling a gun.The deeply layered world of Survarium offers more than meets the eye, let’s take a closer look.

Survarium aims to extend and broaden the limits of the human experience by raising topical questions of our time through the medium of a video game. By leading a virtual life in the aftermath of a massive ecological catastrophe on Earth, players will confront the questions of science, ecology, the interdependency between human and nature, the cruelty and inventiveness of modern civilization, and even spirituality. Survarium will provide a platform for realism unlike we’ve experienced within the medium of video games. The only concern would be if the developers can deliver a captivating enough world that will keep gamers in their virtual playground.


Survarium is the brainchild of Vostok Games, a team of developers known for their work on the acclaimed S.T.A.L.K.E.R series. The Vostok 1 was the first space apparatus to have taken a man (Yury Gagarin) to the orbit of Earth. True to that name, the company aims to deliver a gaming experience that reflects innovation through cutting edge technology.The philosophy at Vostok is; “Movement in line with technological progress, developed in harmony with the environment, where, on top of fun, players receive valuable skills and understandings applicable in real life as well.”

GameZone caught up with Joe Mullin, the Social Media and Community Manager for Vostok Games and Survarium for some insight into this intriguing world.

Survarium Art.jpg

There is a plethora of free-to-play massively multiplayer online games available. What sets Survarium apart?

Survarium has taken on a new approach to online free-to-play games. There is often a bad taste in the gaming communities’ mouth when they see the words "free-to-play" as this leads them to believe in low quality graphics, a lack of immersion and the dreaded "pay2win" system.

We are doing things very differently by offering players 3 different game modes:

  • The first being player versus environment (PvP), where it's a team deathmatch with various goals set out for the players i.e capture the base.
  • The second mode (my personal favourite) is the player versus environment (PvE), where it has been designed for a co-op playthrough of 5 players. This is the actual story mode of Survarium and another aspect of our game that makes it unique.
  • Finally, we offer the players the freeroam game mode. This is a one life, once chance mode, where the player has various tasks and has to make it to the "exit" of the location while trying to survive.”

Survarium SS1.jpg

The Vostok mission statement indicates that you aim to use Survarium as a platform for reflection on various real life experiences. How will this be accomplished?

“As we announced in our first developer diary video. Lately, the world has seen many natural disasters, as if the world is turning on man. We took this idea a little further. This is where the backstory of Survarium comes into play. The world being overrun by nature, attacking man, making life extremely difficult. So, in a sense, we have taken what we have viewed from the outside world and moved it one step further.”

You’ve added a “reputation system” in Survarium. Please explain how this feature will work.

“We plan to implement a system of social ranking (karma). In combination with the game's matchmaking system, karma allows sorting players by their social ranking and sending the aggressive and rude players into games with the same type of players as they are. Karma can be lowered for such things as teamkills, use of cheats, attempts to crack the game, rude communication and vulgar actions with regards to other players. Karma can increase for positive actions like helping other players or actions helping the player's team.”

Survarium Art2.jpg

Open world survival games like DayZ and Survarium is striking a nerve with gamers. It has managed to tap into an unexplored part of the gaming psyche. Why do you think this type of game is so popular?

“In my opinion, it is the very world created with the possibilities for random events that are the key. Games are improving all the time and gamers want to be challenged more and more. Adding all the elements of chance, real life players and freedom of action provides (at this point) the best liked aspects of first-person shooter (FPS) gaming into one area.”

Is there a possibility of hosting local servers for South African players?

“We will be hosting all the games on our own official servers. This is related to such aspects as player rankings, tournaments, game balance etc.”

Survarium SS2.jpg

Closing thoughts

With S.T.A.L.K.E.R, the Vostok developers proved that they can deliver a triple A title. Coupled with the new company philosophy, with Survarium gamers can expect a game that will deliver an experience worth exploring.

I’ve been following Vostok Games’ communication with their followers and it is clear that they aim to understand the heartbeat of the current gaming generation. For me it is not a question of, can Vostok Games deliver a new gaming experience to an over saturated generation, but rather if gamers will have what it takes to survive Survarium.

The game is set for release on PC by the end of 2013

Survarium: Website | Facebook | tumblr / Vostok Games: Website | Twitter | YouTube  / Joe Mullin: Twitter


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