2023 will be a huge year for PC gamers, and will of course be bringing far more than a compressed collection of indie-led projects, too. An example here would be Endnight Games' Sons of the Forest, the long-awaited sequel to the widely known survival-horror hit that dominated Steam just shy of a decade ago.
So, what's new with the cannibals over on Endnight Games' nightmarish IP? Well, a fair amount by the looks of the gameplay trailers and details that recently came to light. But what exactly do you need to know about it, though? Here's everything we've been able to scrape together on the project to date.
What Is Sons of the Forest?
Sons of the Forest is an upcoming first-person survival-horror that comes by way of Endnight Games, the original creator behind 2014's highly acclaimed sandbox title, The Forest. As a direct sequel, players will once again hurl themselves into the unknown woodland conjured from a fictional nightmare — a world in which NPCs are void and your only goal is to survive the day-to-day.
Much like the original, Sons of the Forest will give players the option to forge a story for themselves. Without any major objectives to disrupt the sandbox elements, budding voyagers can either follow a loose storyline, or simply discard it altogether and make one for themselves. To this end, Sons of the Forest is a less of a story-driven title, and more of an experience that tests not only your survival skills, but your creativity as you learn to make do with the bare necessities.
Sons of the Forest transports you to a faraway isle that's both overrun with cannibals and on the verge of breaking out into island-wide warfare. Your goal—as the piggy in the middle of sorts—is to up sticks and embark on a quest to find a missing billionaire, a waylaid survivor who's out in the thick of it. How you go about finding the breadcrumb trail that leads to said billionaire, however, is entirely up to you, and is not in any way, shape, or form, assisted by unnecessary NPCs or redundant story arcs.
“Sent to find a missing billionaire on a remote island, you find yourself in a cannibal-infested hellscape,” the official Steam listing reads. “Craft, build, and struggle to survive, alone or with friends, in this terrifying new open-world survival horror simulator.”
Like The Forest, Sons of the Forest will rely on survival-based gameplay, which will of course come reinforced with the typical crafting, building, and scavenging schematics. Also like the original, the sequel will host a non-linear format, which means players can forge adventures for themselves right from the get-go, with only a few clues to get them on their way.
“Experience complete freedom to tackle the world how you want,” the listing reads. “You decide what you do, where to go and how best to survive. There are no NPC's barking orders at you or giving you missions you don't want to do. You give the orders, you choose what happens next.”
A fascinating feature that Sons of the Forest will employ is a loopable calendar, one that has key events, tools, and foragables forever sifting in an out depending on the season. And so, going by this, it's only natural to assume that your time with the cannibals won't be an overnight excursion, but more a long-term stay with a number of years to shovel through.
Combat will also be instrumental to your survival while out on the island. To conquer the countless foes that lurk between the woodland shadows, you will of course need to learn how to craft weapons with high durability, and above all, use them to protect what's yours and progress deeper into the forest.
Sons of the Forest is being developed by Endnight Games, an independent studio that made its debut with 2014's The Forest, a highly successful first-person survival-horror that went on to win the general favor of the gaming community through its photorealistic visuals, immersive survival-focused gameplay, and all-round intensity.
Originally scripted to launch in May 2022, Sons of the Forest was in line to release as the long-awaited sequel in the could-be series. Unfortunately, Endnight Games eventually announced its proposal to delay the game until October of the same year for the sake of wanting to polish and iron out any last-minute details. Come August, this wound up being nudged back a third time, to February 2023. But more on that later.
So, has Endnight Games released a trailer for Sons of the Forest yet? Fortunately, yes—in 2019, actually. The only downside is that nothing else has really been seen since then, meaning potential buyers won't have a whole lot more to gloss over in the build-up to its eventual 2023 release. Nevertheless, you can see the announcement trailer for yourself in the embed above.
Release Date, Platforms & Editions
Sons of the Forest will be coming to PC via Steam on February 23, 2023. According to Endnight Games, the idea of putting the sequel on consoles isn't entirely out of the question, but for the time being, it will not shed its PC exclusivity. This is subject to change, though given the time frame between the time of writing and the release, it's exceedingly unlikely that Sons of the Forest will be coming to Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5 in 2023.
Sons of the Forest, being locked to PC, will only be available to purchase as a digital download, and will be available for $29.99 on launch day via Steam. For more information on the game's release date and all post-launch updates that surround it, be sure to check in with the official social feed here. We'll be sure to let you know about any details that steer our way between now and February 23rd.
So, what's your take? Will you be picking up a copy of Sons of the Forest when it drops? Let us know over on our socials here or down in the comments below.