Grounded

Icon - Calendar Released: 28 Jul 2020
Icon - Edited Reviewed: 2 Aug 2020
Platform: PC

Grounded

Early Access Review. Grounded is effectively a survival game version of "Honey, I Shrunk the Kids". It's well optimised, the building system is polished and it's really immersive to play in, with tons of potential. If you enjoy base building and Crafting, there's probably 10-20 hours of that to do, although I'll admit that the story content is painfully short right now (can be done in less than an hour). I'm excited to see what the game will add over time because my brain is full of ideas for this little world. One of the best games of the year so far and it's only been out for 2 days.

The other important point is to ignore most of the negative reviews saying either it doesn't have enough content or that the multiplayer doesn't work. 1, it's Early Access - you're not paying for a finished game; you're paying to be part of a development process. If you expect it to be finished, have more content, or it's too expensive, wait for it to be released. Leaving a negative review is worthless. 2, The multiplayer works perfectly, we played for 5 hours in a group of 4 the day after release. It's one of the most polished Early Access games I've played.

Pros

  • Gorgeous, especially the lighting
  • The design of the game world is impeccable. You can climb tall things to get a better view, landmarks are easy to spot, creatures move and interact with each other
  • Blueprint system for planning in advance
  • When you throw a spear at a creature, it gets stuck in it
  • Mysteries
  • There are landmarks scattered around the garden which are great to explore as a tiny person.
  • Can craft armour out of bugs
  • Multiplayer works (but it uses microsoft instead of steam, which is horrible and confusing)

Cons

  • Even on medium, spiders are way too hard. Best armour and weapons before spider tier, still only got one to 25%. If a spider decides to walk through the base it will just kill everyone. That's fine for early game, but they need to be beatable later
  • The 'leave feedback' section is literally just an icon system for happy/sad face and a location. There's nowhere to type actual feedback
  • It uses Microsoft instead of Steam for multiplayer, which is a genuinely shitty interface for playing together. Once you eventually manage to add each other as friends (which, unintuitively you do by 'following' each other), it took us a while to work out how to stop hearing everyone twice.
  • Pathing could be better. Creatures regularly get stuck in large objects or underneath bases

Wishlist

  • Renewable materials. Looks like dandelions, clay and quartzite don't come back yet
  • Bigger inventory through crafting bag upgrades
  • Weather. Rain would be awesome
  • Some kind of building to explore. I guess the house is ambitious, but there's a shed in the garden
  • More weapons and items to craft, with longer production chains
  • Some kind of leaf boat you can sail on the pond
  • More story
  • Custom characters and clothing customisation
  • When you wear armour, it shouldn't take an inventory slot
  • Fish
  • Subnautica bases
  • Multiplayer bosses
  • More kinds of bugs. Bees, frogs, snails, worms
  • Some sort of power system for lighting using a battery for power
  • More traps (think Fortnite PVE)
  • More points of interest that aren't trash. Garden ornaments?
  • Craftable paragliders
  • I'd love the landmarks to have more things to explore, like more complicated rubbish rather than just cans
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