Don’t Starve, Klei Entertainment’s absolutely charming 2D survival game, is coming to iPad on July 9, according to the developer. Don’t Starve: Pocket Edition (a slight misnomer for this iPad-exclusive, unless you have enormous pockets) includes all of the content from the original PC version, including the Reign of Giants expansion. At $5, that’s a substantial discount over the $20 charged for the core game and expansion (without discount) on Steam.
The developers “created a new intuitive touch interface (that) lets you explore, fight, craft and manage inventory with ease.” The point-and-click gameplay should lend itself quite naturally to a touch interface. There is no mention of whether the recent multiplayer expansion, Don’t Starve Together, will be included, and so it is safer to assume that it will not be, at least at first.
Don’t Starve is one of the finest examples of the exploding survival game genre that has arisen in the wake of Minecraft. Like that game, Don’t Starve drops you in the middle of the wilderness with nothing but the clothes on your back and the simple imperative of its title. From there you start by gathering sticks, stones, and berries to construct basic tools and stave off your imminent demise while building up toward some degree of sustainability. Once you have a steady source of food and a safe place to sleep, you can start to explore more of the procedurally-generated world and uncover its many secrets. The Reign of Giants expansion added more items, seasons, and its eponymous giants as a dangerous new threat to your survival.
Instead of a first-person perspective, you play from a third-person, isometric view, looking down on your character, whom you can select from a variety of unlockable options, each with their own unique abilities. The chunky, 3D voxels of Mojang’s breakout success were replaced by charming, hand-drawn 2D art in a quirky, gothic style reminiscent of Edward Gorey and Tim Burton.
Don’t Starve: Pocket Edition, available on the App Store on July 9, requires at least an iPad 3 or iPad mini 2, and iOS 8 or up.