Journey to the Savage Planet is kind of a strange game that’s an interesting mash-up of genres.

On one hand it looks like a first person shooter, you have a gun and everything is from a first person perspective. But there’s also a ton of platforming and verticality. And a large focus on exploration, resource gathering and crafting upgrades like a survival game.

It’s all bundled together into a a pretty unique package that doesn’t overstay its welcome.

Lets start out taking a look at the trailer:


Journey to the Savage Planet screenshot

The Story

You’re an explorer for the 4th largest planet exploring company in the galaxy who gets sent to a random new planet to check it out and see if it’s habitable.

You end up crash landing you ship there which is kind of where the survival aspects of the gameplay come in.

The job you’re tasked with is scanning everything and finding an alternate fuel source for your ship so you can eventually leave.

Early into the mission you encounter the ruins of a giant alien tower which is very strange since preliminary scans suggested there was never any intelligent life on the planet.

You start investigating that and ultimately learn the fate of what happened to the aliens that built it.

It’s not a super complex story or anything but it works.

I do have to touch on the humor in this game a bit though. If you watched the trailer above you’ll sort of get a feel for it. It’s wacky, some times kind of gross (which you may or may not care for) and there are lots of comedy videos with fake commercials and stuff like that.

You also have an AI companion who’s constantly making jokes.

In general I had no issue with the humor itself but there’s just way too much of it. It never ends and after a couple hours of play time I just turned the volume down and listened to podcasts while playing. This type of humor in funny in small doses but the game really leans into it very heavily and it may be too much for you depending on your tastes.

I kind of stopped watching all the new videos I unlocked too which is too bad because they did put a lot of effort into them with actual life actors and everything.

But that’s really the only major weakness I found with the game.


Viewing the giant alien tower

The Gameplay

The game takes place from a first person perspective. You have a pistol in one hand with your standard first person shooter controls and in the other hand you can hold various items like bait or grenade like alien seeds that can explore, shock or burn things with acid.

You venture out into the world and try to scan different plants, animals and objects to learn more about things and unlock potential upgrades.

All the alien animals you encounter can be killed and drop various resources like carbon, silicon, aluminum, etc. that you can take back to your ship and use to craft weapon, suit or other upgrades with a 3D printer.

This is kind of where the survival game aspects come in but fortunately you don’t have to worry about things like hunger or water meters depleting, it’s basically just resource gathering and crafting.

You’ll also need to find these alien alloy orb things that are required for important upgrades. These are scattered around the world and require solving a little puzzle, completing a little combat challenge and stuff like that.

There’s some interesting enemy variety as well that require different approaches to combat. For example one fast enemy requires you to throw a stick ball at it which locks it in place so you can run behind it and shoot the weak spot on its tail.

There are also boss encounters that are all different enough and make for some interesting fights.

As mentioned before the game has a ton of verticality and there’s a lot of platforming. Platforming never really works that great in first person but things are pretty generous here. You have a jetpack that eventually gets upgraded with a triple jump and you have other traversal mechanics such as a grappling beam.

I’m generally not a huge fan of first person platforming but I never really got frustrated here.


Giant alien mushrooms

The World and Graphics

The art direction here is excellent with its own unique wacky humorous style.

The alien monsters you encounter are all interesting and weird and the world is super colorful and fun to explore. It’s divided into a few major areas such as a frozen area, a temperate forest, floating rocks and an area with giant mushrooms.

Overall the world is a joy to explore with secrets and upgrades hidden everywhere.

The graphics aren’t crazy but they complement everything very well and everything looks great. I played on PC and was able to play at 1440p 60fps with ultra settings no problem with no glitches.


Flying alien jellyfish

Sound and Music

The voice acting is all done very well. It’s all over-emphasized with weird wacky characters which gets back to what I was saying before about the humor but for what they’re going for it’s all done really well.

A lot of work went into the various sound effects and things like aliens exploding into a puddle of goo or an alien getting kicked into a buzz-saw like plant monster all sound excellent.

The music is very atmospheric and fits the areas well but it’s more just quiet background ambiance and there aren’t really any stand out melodies.


Alien puffer birds

In Conclusion

Overall I enjoyed this game. I finished it in about 10 hours and that was with a lot of extra exploring and secret finding. That’s the perfect length here for an enjoyable experience. Any longer than that though and I could tell it would start to be kind of a slog.

It’s a fun little mashup of different genres in a wacky science fiction setting with a lot of comedy.

If the sound of that sounds good to you then definitely pick this up, especially if you see it on sale.

Images from the Journey to the Savage Planet page on Steam used under Fair Use.