Open your eyes. There’s blue all around you. As you get your bearings, panic strikes from the revelation that you’re floating on a set of stitched-together planks. For a brief moment, your mind takes you to the time you watched Tom Hanks in Cast Away. There’s no volleyball to accompany you though, and all you’ve got is rope and a hook and a solitary option. Survive.
Raft is a game for those who would react to the above situation thinking “I can make this work”.
As mxdwn Games first reported, Raft was successful in meeting its May 23 Early Access release. Created by Swedish developers Redbeet Interactive, the project has humble beginnings that stem back to 2016. Per the developers’ presskit:
Raft started as a student project at Uppsala University, Campus Gotland fall 2016. A group of three students spent around 15 weeks half-time to create a prototype for a survival game set on an endless ocean.
The prototype was released on itch.io and immediately picked up steam with popular YouTube playthroughs. The three-person development team that careened this project consists of programmer Semih Parlayan with 3D artist Ellen Mellåker and 3D/2D artist André Bengtsson.
Along with their obvious talent and impressive work ethic, the developers of Raft have a strong understanding of community interaction being the X factor that will make or break their game. Per their Early Access notes on Steam, it’s clear that they’ve been humbled and inspired by the immense positive feedback their game has received so far:
When we first released the Raft prototype, we were simply amazed and overwhelmed by the incredible response from players around the world. Inspired by the community’s support and active feedback, we knew we had a responsibility to grow Raft into the fully realized survival experience those fans deserved.
Seeing strong commitment and appreciation is refreshing for both new and early fans of the game. The developers are showing more than enough proper care in terms of their interaction with the community, going so far as to answer even the simplest of queries:
You can build a taller Raft to get higher up 🙂
— Raft Survival Game (@RaftSurvivaGame) May 25, 2018
Raft is available now on Steam for $19.99. You can choose to survive by yourself or with a group of friends with online co-op. Though there is no official date for the full release, the developers state that those who purchase now will not have to pay extra for added features as this game grows.