Grounded was one of the big announcements on the Inside Xbox show that just happened at X019; quite a surprise and a nice change of pace for Obsidian. I was lucky enough to be able to attend X019 and give Grounded a try, here’s what I thought.
We got our hands on a very limited sample of Grounded allowing us only 15 minutes to uncover what this gem had to offer.
The Demo task was simple, find your way to the camp and finish constructing it, and most people did just that. Luckily there were two of us and I watched as Dinky made her way to the camp, chopped down gigantic grasses and finished the fence that defended your home base. Shortly after that, you’re tasked with fighting off hordes of ants to defend your mini home.
Watching her do this was quite fun, it gave me a basic understanding of how the game runs and operates. It seemed like quite a normal survival style game just with its own twist; this time you are not stranded on an island surrounded by dinosaurs or shark-infested waters, you are shrunken down to the size of an ant and have to survive the elements and natural ecosystem that is our world, where ants and other insects we would usually just swat away become your biggest threat. It’s quite the twist from the usual enemies that we find in the hordes of survival games out there, and Grounded has a much more colourful and bold look to it, distinguishing it even more.
Once I was done watching Dinky do her thing it was my turn to have a go at Obsidians take on survival. I immediately deviated from my main task in search of secrets.
Admittedly there was not a huge amount to find but I was nonetheless impressed, it gave me a sense of wonder.
Finding things like cans that lay to waste in the tall grass sparked my brain and lead me to think things like “this would make an awesome base.” I also found a ladybird that did not appreciate my presence and dispatched me into the darkness of my demise.
After a quick respawn I decided to try my hand at finishing the base’s fence, and after completion, I looked to the workbench and saw the acorn armour available to craft.
Admittedly, I did not manage to craft any, but it was not through lack of trying. While looking for materials and fighting off random insects and avoiding the ladybug, I found myself falling in love with this mini world just as my time ran out and put an abrupt stop to my gaming.
The details around the world in Grounded are what made me start to adore this colourful adventure, things like water droplets being your source of nourishment, the grass falling when you chop it down, and the sense of scale. The short time I spent with Grounded has instilled confidence in me that this will be a game you will want to play.
As a side note on Grounded, it will be the first game to be an Xbox preview title that is included with Game Pass, so there is really no reason for any Xbox player not to check it out when the preview launches (don’t forget to submit feedback when you play the preview, as it really helps the developers).