I have never really been sold on the idea of pairing survival games with any kind of storyline. Games like The Forest have tried to make it work, and to me, it always feels tacked on to the survival experience rather than a cohesive part of it. Without fail whenever I come across a cutscene or some kind of story aspect of these games it always pulls me out of the intense survival game that I have spent time playing and breaks the immersion. With Green Hell's Spirits of Amazonia update though somehow the story and survival aspects of the game have been melded together in a way that is both satisfying and exciting.
Before Spirits of Amazonia, I actually had very little experience with Green Hell as a whole. I messed around with the survival mode a little bit not long after the game released, but it never quite clicked for me. However, I have sunk more hours than can be counted in just about every other major survival game out there like The Forest, Rust, Conan Exiles, and even Ark. Coming back to the much more complicated and realistic world of Green Hell was a jarring experience at first, but Spirits of Amazonia has granted me a much greater appreciation of the game as a whole.
Back to The Past
Spirits of Amazonia is set before the events of the main story of Green Hell and has main character Jake attempting to gain the trust of an Amazon tribe after his boat crashes in the middle of the rain forest. Rather than just trying to survive and discover a way out of the rain forest, the story instead tasks the player with working with a tribal elder to complete a series of tasks in the area. Each of these tasks will increase trust with the tribe and in turn, give Jake more information about how these Amazonian tribes operate.
I think the reason that the story content works so well in Green Hell is that the severe difficulty of the game almost grants it a rogue-like quality. I honestly lost track of the number of times that I died while playing, and almost every death was unique. Each death though taught me more about surviving in this harsh world and pushed me to try and get further into the story each time. As I built up better defenses to protect my hideout from predators and crafted stronger weapons to bring down hostile tribe members, I found myself becoming much more confident as I explored the world, and in turn, Jake's survival became my own.
Can You Gain Their Trust?
The trust-building mechanic that was added in with Spirits of Amazonia works in some very interesting ways. Players will first have to track down the main camp and speak to the elder, but after that, they are able to do several tasks that will build up the trust bar. These tasks range from destroying hostile native camps, bringing lost children home, and even holding funerals for fallen tribe members. As this trust increases the player will learn more about the area around them and discover more lore and information that leads into the original story.
Spirits of Amazonia is an excellent experience for Green Hell fans of all skill levels, and its new storyline provides some great lore and background details for the main storyline.
One of the most interesting features of Spirits of Amazonia though has to be the new Legends that the player can discover and solve. Throughout the jungle, there are several different stones that have snippets of stories painted on them. These pieces can all be collected and put together in order to acquire a Legendary Quest that the player will then need to solve in order to gain a huge amount of trust with the tribe. There are four different quests to acquire with this first part of the update, so it stands to reason that there will be more with the additional parts. These quests are a lot of fun to complete and add a certain level of puzzle-solving to a game that doesn't really have anything else quite like it.
A Great Experience for Veterans and Newcomers Alike
Those who have been playing Green Hell for awhile though will be happy to know that there are many other new features that have been added into the game that present new dangers and challenges for them. The whole map that you are exploring is a completely different environment that the player must get used to, with an entirely new layout. There are even new plants to check out like a mushroom variant and a spiked tree that can poison the player if they touch it. On top of all of this though there are even various bug fixes and quality of life features with this update that has made Green Hell a much better experience.
Green Hell is an insanely difficult game, and Spirits of Amazonia definitely embraces this challenging experience. Some players may find it frustrating to die over and over again, but this aspect of the game really helps make the entire thing more immersive. I felt Jake's frustrations and despair like they were my own, and I felt just as excited as him to discover more about the Amazonian tribes due to this. The first part of Spirits of Amazonia is an excellent update to the game, so let's hope that part two is coming soon.
TechRaptor reviewed Green Hell - Spirits of Amazonia Part 1 using a Steam code provided by the developer. The game is also currently available on Nintendo Switch.
- New Gameplay Elements
- New Area To Explore
- Engaging Storyline
- Interesting Mechanics
- Death Happens Often