It's very rare to see “Unreal Engine” and “survival game” in the same sentence. The big problem is that Epic's high-end blockbuster game engine isn't really designed for open-world style emergent gameplay. However, Flix Interactive is pushing the boundaries of the engine to whole new heights with Eden Star.
The game recently received its debut trailer, which you can view above. The trailer showcases some things you may not have expected from a first-person survival game, including the ability to destroy walls and pillars. I'm not exactly sure what the extent is of the physics-based destruction, but it's quite obvious that it plays a significant part in how players explore and progress through the world.
It's really hard to get a feel for the game but the concepts look really, really good. Being able to use the physics-hand to pick stuff up and throw it into things is pretty awesome. The light parkour mechanics and being able to scale through the environment by climbing around looks awesome. I'm curious just how scalable the environment is and whether you can climb on anything or just certain things?
The physics are also extremely intriguing, giving players the option to build up, fortify and structuralize a defense for the Eden Kit. It has a very similar premise to Sanctum and Edge of Space but with hints of gameplay from Psi-Ops and Half-Life 2 tossed in for good measure.
My main worry, however, is in how big the game world is and whether or not the game will function within instanced areas like many other Unreal Engine games out there, or if it will be open world like other survival games, such as Minecraft or Rust.
The reason I'm worried is because Epic's Unreal Engine was never really good for large scale environments and hosting tons of AI/player entities in a single shard. Most times Unreal Engine games keep things quite contained and in deathmatch sized arenas for performance reasons. I think one of the few games that really tried going large scale with the Unreal Engine (apart from APB: Reloaded) is Renegade X, the UDK-made indie game.
Nevertheless, if Flix Interactive can manage to churn out a compelling game with solid features that doesn't feel too compact, then Eden Star could easily prove to be a game worth keeping an eye on in the niche emergent sector.
The developers have big plans for the game and they will appear on Steam's Greenlight service soon. For now you can learn a little bit more about the world and the gameplay design by paying a visit to the official website.