For all of you fans of the Girl on Fire, Katniss Everdeen, you can finally live out your fantasies of fending for yourself on a deadly island now that The Culling has entered Early Access even earlier than expected. In fact, you can start slaying your foes right this very minute.

Released this weekend through Steam Early Access, The Culling wears its inspirations proudly on its blood-splattered shoulder. Up to 16 players get dropped onto an island where they either have to fend for themselves or build an unsteady alliance with fellow players in order to survive.

On the island, you'll have to find makeshift weapons or craft your own implements of destruction, including traps and more deadly doohickies than you can point a stick at. In fact, you could probably use that stick you're pointing with as a weapon, too, so hang on to it for dear life.

Of course, it wouldn't be a proper survival game without some aces in the hole. There are occasional firearms hidden across the island, though they come with limited ammo and make enough noise to draw a crowd. Still, when the other guy brings a pointing-stick to a gun fight, you're likely to earn at least one small victory in this insane world.



In action, The Culling looks a heck of a lot like Far Cry. There are lots of animations for the weapons and the island would feel right at home in just about any of those games. In concept, though, The Culling is clearly inspired by movies like Battle Royale and The Hunger Games. These types of scenarios are an entire genre of manga an anime in Japan, so we wouldn't be surprised to hear that The Culling does especially well over there.

The coolest thing about the game, though, is that there can be only one winner. You can go all Rainbow Six from the onset and team up with your buddies, but you know at some point that said buddies are going to try to take you out, too. So there's an interesting math in trying to determine at what point you no longer need your friends and, more importantly, can you take them out without dying yourself? We're seeing trust issues becoming a bigger focus in some games like the upcoming The Division, and it is certainly an interesting mechanic to play around with.

If all of that sounds like a twisted good time to you, then you can jump into The Culling right now. The game will cost $14.99 standard, or you can get it for a discounted price of $13.49 for the time being. That special pricing ends March 11.

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