Trained A Monkey, Cooked A Bat – My First Hour In The Survivalists

Apple Arcade feels as if it’s evolving, and slowly developing an identity, with Apple employing some neat little marketing flourishes to help it on its way.

I love for example, how Arcade is embracing its characters and mashing them together in artworks such as the one above. It makes the service feel cohesive and inviting.

Butter Royale’s characters have been getting Saturday morning-style animations, revealing their backstories on social media. They are well worth seeking out.

Updates continue to come thick and fast, adding new content to existing games, with subscribers effectively holding a never ending season pass to Arcade’s offerings. Little Orpheus, which I finished not long that ago, received one of these updates this week, and I know I’ll head back in sometime, but I don’t know when. Hours are short, games are many.

Today I’ve been distracted by the launch of Team 17’s The Survivalists, which just landed on all the major consoles, PC, and Apple Arcade.

Flip the page to find out how my first hour went (spoiler, it was eventful).

Drifting ashore on a raft of logs, I picked up a few pebbles, navigating across the screen of my 2014 Mac mini with my PS4 DualShock controller in hand.

With the pebbles I crafted an axe.

The obvious thing to do next of course is chop down a tree, but first I explored the menus and customised my character, going for a lovely purple skinned, light blue haired (messy), sunglass wearing adventurer.

Good to go.

Chopped down a tree, gathered the lumber, explored a little, gathering and quickly filling my inventory allotment – palm leaves, grass, coconuts, berries (good for health), petals (not sure what they do yet).

Crafting new items opens up more branches in the crafting tree, and eventually I managed to craft a sleeping mat which I placed against a rock wall where it seemed I’d be safe enough sleeping out in the open.

Night fell, and I briefly considered making use of my makeshift bed, but instead ventured cautiously on to see how the game world changed after dark.

To paraphrase the great Hunter S. Thompson, that’s when I noticed the bats. And they noticed me.

We fought, and I managed to kill a couple, collecting their meat for later, yum. I tried to eat it raw but wasn’t allowed. Probably a good thing.

Time for a nap.

On waking I headed south, searched a dilapidated jeep, lit a fire, cooked some crispy bat wings and also some bat meat kebabs (nice to have menu options). While around the camp fire I managed to train a monkey and teach it to cook. Handy. Now I’ve got my own personal chef on this island. Things are looking up.

I found a dungeon, entered it, and promptly died at the hands of some lurking beasts after my weapon broke leaving me unarmed, losing all my gear. Ouch.

This isn’t my first rodeo, and having played this style of game before, I had a suspicion that after respawning if I ventured down that same dungeon, I’d find my hard-earned gear in a pile. I was right. But I had to be quick.

I got in, evaded the lurkers with some sprinting and rolling, collected the vital bits of my gear that I could lay hands on before I took too much damage, and found my way back to the exit. Mission accomplished.

All geared up again I decided my sleeping mat needed to be closer to my fire and jeep area that was quickly becoming a home away from home. So I made a new bed there, slept, saved, and quit.

Lessons learned? Next time I venture into that dungeon I’m taking with me a stack of food, and a spare weapon. I’ll be back lurkers. Your days are numbered.

I am digging The Survivalists.

If you’re new to The Apple TV Gaming Blog (ATVG), or just new to Apple TV gaming in general, or both, then the best place to get acquainted is our Best Apple TV Games of 2020 article. You’ll find a great collection of games to play, and a bunch of useful links to our previous site content. Welcome aboard. Enjoy the ride.