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Deathground: Multiplayer survival horror with dinosaurs

Multiplayer horror continues to be a hot trend for gaming, with the likes of Dead by Daylight, Friday the 13th: The Game, Depth, GTFO, and so many more… Now, with the new Kickstarter campaign for Deathground, it looks like Jaw Drop Games are adding something that’s been sorely missing from the sub-genre: dinosaurs.

Deathground, a multiplayer survival horror game in a land of deadly, AI-driven dinosaurs was just announced, with its Kickstarter campaign aiming to reach a modest £80,000 by Friday 7th August. At the time of writing, the campaign has already reached £11,206 just 24 hours after its launch, which tells me that shouldn’t have a problem doing so… It’s got dinosaurs, what else could we need?

Here’s what we know about Deathground so far…

The base game will be on PC only and the campaigns states that it will have at least “3 maps, 2 dinosaur types, 3 character classes and peer-to-peer networked matches with 1-3 player co-op.” Your objective as a professional hunter and survivalist is to collect high-value loot and then meet at a pre-agreed extraction point; completing your objectives means levelling up, giving you access to “new content” – this new content isn’t yet detailed, but I’d put my money on new skills, items, or perhaps even new aesthetics for each character.

Standing between you and your goal is an ever-changing world of varying weather, dynamic objectives, randomised spawn and extraction points, and, of course, the terrifying main event… the dinosaurs.

To survive against the unpredictable AI-controlled dinosaurs hunting you down, you must find items around the world and craft new tools to increase your chances of survival. One such example was revealed in the announcement trailer, showing the use of a flare to distract a velociraptor. Though guns do exist in Deathground, ammo is said to be rare and the loud noise created will have severe consequences. Is it worth the risk?

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The unique class abilities will also play a huge part in a team’s survival:

Engineer: Hack doors, alarms, and power grids without other tools.
Scout: Use a motion detector to see when dinosaurs are close.
Hunter: Start with a high-caliber rifle and hunting instincts that let you sense your surroundings.

Each class also has varying ‘general traits’, such as different sprint speeds, tiptoes (likely stealth), throw distance, stamina, inventory size, and strength. So far, I have my eye on the Scout for their high levels of speed and stealth… sorry, tiptoes.

Confirmed map locations included a jungle and a warehouse facility, both featured in the trailer, and there will likely be another location revealed over time if the game is to launch with a base of three separate maps. Either way, even with a small amount of characters, maps, and dinosaurs available at launch, Deathground is aiming for max replayability with its dynamic maps and reactive dinosaurs.

Deathground certainly seems like it’s in safe talons, boasting a team that’s worked on a number of massively popular and scary games, such as Soma, Depth, the Total War series, DiRT 5, Q.U.B.E. 1 & 2, Amnesia, and Alien Isolation. As an added bonus, the game’s soundtrack is being composed by BAFTA-nominated composer, David Housden, also known for his work on Thomas was Alone, Volume, and Q.U.B.E. 2.

 

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The campaign suggests that the studio plans to make Deathground a long-term success, adding a number of features over time, including:

• New types of deadly dinosaurs that push the game's systems into different directions
• New player abilities and character classes
• New maps and zones
• Ranked multiplayer seasons
• Different game-modes that move the base survival horror formula off-axis and could include more PvP aspects

However, if the Kickstarter exceeds their initial goal, who knows how many of these things could be implemented at launch?

I’ve personally never backed a Kickstarter campaign so quickly in my life, so I’d imagine many other dinosaur-loving horror fanatics are doing just the same thing. If you feel like joining us and nabbing yourself a copy of Deathground when it releases on Steam Early Access in August 2021 or full retail release in Q2 2022, check out the Deathground Kickstarter campaign. But try not to make too much noise… Who knows which hungry dinosaurs might be listening?

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About The Author
Ryan Noble
Staff Reviewer
If Ryan isn't watching, reading or playing some form of horror, he's probably writing about it. He used to be an Editor at Indie Game Magazine so he has a soft spot for independent creators, especially when they're creating fear. Whether you're one such creator, or a fellow horror fan, let's speak about spooks on Twitter or email.
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