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Grounded - Honey, Obsidian shrunk the kids!


Captain Kelsten
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2 minutes ago, Kayin Amoh said:

Oh, and a bug that's affecting my framerate. See, turns out ants are stockpiling food the whole time you play so by day 200 there's massive piles of apple bits wreaking havoc with the physics in dark tunnels and little cul de sacs. I'd assume a patch is coming soon since people are starting to feel the effects by now - on series X I can't even get in to clear it out as it crashes when I get too close.

 

Firing up the PC to see if there's cross progression and it doesn't kill my game in the same spot.


My game on Series X started to chug really badly after the last update and having found out that this was the culprit I went to the offending area, cleared it out of the several hundred apple bits that had built up there, and then built a little grass wall barrier to prevent the ants depositing their food there. Seemed to fix it in the interim but as you say a hotfix will be imminent I imagine because it’s literally breaking people’s saves right now.

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  • 3 weeks later...
7 minutes ago, Alan Stock said:

What's the thoughts on playing this solo, and likewise playing Valheim solo? I just got Gamepass for PC, so I can play them both now. I think I want to do one of them co-op but the other for late night single player. Whatcha reckon? 

 

Haven't played Valheim so I can't really make a comparison in that regard, but I've played Grounded entirely solo for around 50 hours or so now and have absolutely loved it.

 

On the default difficulty setting it can be a very challenging game at the start, there's no denying that. But once you get rolling with the gear upgrades and understand how the combat properly works it blossoms into one of the very best games I've played this year (and if the difficulty doesn't appeal there's nothing to prevent you whacking it down in the options anyway). Its world design and atmosphere are absolutely masterful.

 

Grounded in my opinion combines the best aspects of the survival and survival horror genres, and so for that reason I think it works really well as a solo experience. It's incredibly atmospheric at night-time and you're guaranteed to shit your pants at least once. I can't give any higher praise than that.

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Thanks pinholestar, yeah sounds great. My only exposure to Grounded has been via Youtubers when it first came out, who always play together, so it was hard to get a sense of how solo play would hold up. And as for challenge, I love survival challenges as long as its not too grindy or frustrating. I'm a big fan of stuff like the Long Dark, Don't Starve etc. In fact would you recommend upping any of the difficulty settings in Grounded for a more challenging (whilst still being fun) experience?

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13 minutes ago, Alan Stock said:

Thanks pinholestar, yeah sounds great. My only exposure to Grounded has been via Youtubers when it first came out, who always play together, so it was hard to get a sense of how solo play would hold up. And as for challenge, I love survival challenges as long as its not too grindy or frustrating. I'm a big fan of stuff like the Long Dark, Don't Starve etc. In fact would you recommend upping any of the difficulty settings in Grounded for a more challenging (whilst still being fun) experience?

 

I love The Long Dark too, so I think you'll enjoy Grounded a lot.

 

I found the default difficulty setting (Medium) to be a real challenge in places, so if you're already au fait with the demands of survival games then I'd stick with that and see how you get on. The harder difficulty (Whoa!, I think it's called) seems to be there for repeat playthroughs for people who are already intimately familiar with the systems and mechanics of the game and/or for co-op groups of 3 or 4, so wouldn't be recommended for a first time through. You can change the settings at any time with no penalty anyway.

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Started playing this solo over the weekend, partly for an achievement for the Microsoft Reward and partly because I want another Subnautica and the addition of the story content in 1.0 felt like it might go some way to achieving that.

 

Funnily enough, it did feel a lot like Subnautica in that, for the first hour or so, I didn't really like it. My fond memories of Subnautica are wrapped up in the mid-game cycle where you've got your automations set up and the surviving is relatively taken care of. The survival in this, with the multitude of enemies and my own seemingly low health, felt a lot steeper in challenge and almost turned me off but I persevered.

 

Tried to get to the Hedge Lab but following the marker meant I ended up traversing the (lower) Hedge at night and got completely turned around so went back in the day and cleared that out. Got back to my exposed campsite by the starting field station and was promptly set upon by an Orb Weaver so took that as the cue to get a proper base on the go and create some degree of fortification.

 

What I thought might be a quick sojourn before returning to the Oak Lab has been about 3 in-game days of messing about. Once I realised the spinning wheel converted things at a much better cost, that was it. Everything's getting built.

 

It's just a grass and weed box at the moment (#420) but it's got a dew catcher and water tank and soon a jerky rack. Just need to bash up a few more bombardier beetles and we're all set.

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I've been enjoying this. At first I was a bit dissapointed with its system performance. I got a new laptop and was hoping to be able to run this pretty well, but could only run it on low specs and detail. Everything looked grainy and it ran pretty poorly. Still, I ventured into the grasslands and did the laser stuff. It was only after I realised my graphics card drivers were outdated and fixed them that my Nvida card kicked in and... damn this is a pretty game! All running smoothly now and looks great.

 

As for the game, it's exceeded my expectations in imagination. I love how they've made the Honey I Shrunk the kids idea into actual gameplay mechanics. The insects' behaviours, the dew drops on leaves (they even trap objects you throw into them and those will fall and bounce with the droplet!). Discarded juice cartons dripping out liquid from their straws, dandelion heads for gliders. It's wonderful. The art style is gorgeous too, and the roaming wildlife really makes it feel alive.

 

Mechanically its been good as well, the survival elements are well thought out. Its tough and that makes going for armour and weapon upgrades important, which encourages  exploration and encounters. The big insects are evil and you don't mess with them. I've just done the hedge base, which was an epic journey. I have my base set up at the edge of the dry grass area in the middle of the map, right near a bunch of stink bugs which I can't mess with. I've got a big grass wall perimeter and some of the essential stations set up. I am impressed with the amount of recipes you can unlock, and the inventory space is quite generous which I really appreciate.

 

My only real complaint so far is the map which is terrible - thank god for the hud marker beacon which lets me see my base location or I'd be constantly lost. And its easy to get snagged on all the grass and shiz when you are in combat or running away, which makes sense but can be frustrating. 

 

The recommendation to play on medium was a good shout. The big insects are scary foes and its only recently I've been able to take on medium threats like Larvae. Looking forward to seeing what else lies ahead. Although I think this would be fun in multiplayer I do think you'd miss out on the tight progression system and the sense of discovery and threat, so I'm happy to continue playing solo.

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Co-op is actually fantastic, but you'd be best if everyone is completely fresh to the game and trying to figure it out as you go - otherwise one person would take charge and the sense of discovery would be hugely impacted.

 

I don't generally do game of the year stuff, but I guess in this case I'm making an exception as I know this is the best thing I've played this year.

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22 minutes ago, Kayin Amoh said:

Co-op is actually fantastic, but you'd be best if everyone is completely fresh to the game and trying to figure it out as you go - otherwise one person would take charge and the sense of discovery would be hugely impacted.

 

I don't generally do game of the year stuff, but I guess in this case I'm making an exception as I know this is the best thing I've played this year.

 

I re-started recently and absolutely flew through the early game because I knew where stuff was, which enemies to take on with what equipment and which ones to avoid etc. Discovery is absolutely key to the enjoyment of the game so playing co-op with people at your level of experience is vital. But it does play brilliantly solo anyway. I'm so glad that they are continuing to add new content and keep working on QOL improvements.

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1 hour ago, Alan Stock said:

I've been enjoying this. At first I was a bit dissapointed with its system performance. I got a new laptop and was hoping to be able to run this pretty well, but could only run it on low specs and detail. Everything looked grainy and it ran pretty poorly. Still, I ventured into the grasslands and did the laser stuff. It was only after I realised my graphics card drivers were outdated and fixed them that my Nvida card kicked in and... damn this is a pretty game! All running smoothly now and looks great.

 

As for the game, it's exceeded my expectations in imagination. I love how they've made the Honey I Shrunk the kids idea into actual gameplay mechanics. The insects' behaviours, the dew drops on leaves (they even trap objects you throw into them and those will fall and bounce with the droplet!). Discarded juice cartons dripping out liquid from their straws, dandelion heads for gliders. It's wonderful. The art style is gorgeous too, and the roaming wildlife really makes it feel alive.

 

Mechanically its been good as well, the survival elements are well thought out. Its tough and that makes going for armour and weapon upgrades important, which encourages  exploration and encounters. The big insects are evil and you don't mess with them. I've just done the hedge base, which was an epic journey. I have my base set up at the edge of the dry grass area in the middle of the map, right near a bunch of stink bugs which I can't mess with. I've got a big grass wall perimeter and some of the essential stations set up. I am impressed with the amount of recipes you can unlock, and the inventory space is quite generous which I really appreciate.

 

My only real complaint so far is the map which is terrible - thank god for the hud marker beacon which lets me see my base location or I'd be constantly lost. And its easy to get snagged on all the grass and shiz when you are in combat or running away, which makes sense but can be frustrating. 

 

The recommendation to play on medium was a good shout. The big insects are scary foes and its only recently I've been able to take on medium threats like Larvae. Looking forward to seeing what else lies ahead. Although I think this would be fun in multiplayer I do think you'd miss out on the tight progression system and the sense of discovery and threat, so I'm happy to continue playing solo.

 

The combat actually gets really, really good. I've never been a fan of long battles in games, mostly because they just involve damage sponges most of the time but they have really nailed the combat in this. I can time my parrys well for the most part but also feel like I am one mistake away from death against most late game enemies. A battle against certain boss-type enemies can take 10 minutes, but it doesn't feel like it at all.

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Somehow I've put about 30 hours into this over the week. A tremendous time vortex. Finished up the Pond lab and now moved onto the Haze. Gummed up the weed killer so it's all systems go when the sun rises.

 

I've avoided looking up videos of what good bases can look like as I've stuck with my beginner's hovel, pretty much at the starting spot, and don't feel a reason to move but I do wish the ground was a bit more even to get a proper structure built. The run back to my hut from wherever I've been has never been too bad and the lack of storage permanence means starting afresh somewhere else feels like a bit of a hassle.

 

I'm doing a generic tanky build with Ladybug Armour, poking at things with a Mosquito Sword from behind a Black Ant Shield, which means the early areas are now a cakewalk (although I've still avoided challenging Wolf Spiders mano-a-fango), and enough Milk Molars whacked into healing that Beefy smoothies heal half health in an instant.

 

The one big thing that differs from Subnautica is gear and upgrades being absolutely essential, instead of nice to haves. Until I had all this stuff, infected larvae and bombardier beetles were absolutely destroying me in 2 hits.

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Returned triumphant from the Haze Lab (weirdly small and quick compared to Hedge and Pond but I guess getting in is the difficulty) to deliver the golden cartridge to BURG.L and discovered, under the Oak Tree, that plugging the weed killer was A Bad Idea.

 

Still, at least the non-exploding Wolfs have become as laughable as their Orb cousins since the Bone Dagger is probably more effective on land than underwater.

 

The Black Anthill Lab is next so I thought I'd do the same as with the Red Anthill and craft their armour because wearing a set of their slaughtered brethren will surely earn me their respect and safe passage. With a need for Bee parts, it's up to the Picnic Table and an entertaining dance to try and get any of them to stay close enough for me to slash away. Perfect Blocking their melee attacks seems to push them out of reach so I've had to basically let them hit me so I can get a few swipes in.

 

Even though it's a relatively small area, the Picnic Table (and the surprise on top) is just a nice thing to go around. That's really the main enjoyment I've had with this; how nice and solid everything looks and how dependable the traversal is. Even with all the nasties, it's just a satisfying place to explore.

 

All my spider whacking and spinning wheels means a trip back to my hovel for silk ropes and then we're ziplining to the Sandbox.

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Big patch out today, I checked out the patch notes and there's loads of great quality of life stuff, plus new cosmetics/base stuff and xmas themed things.

 

https://grounded.obsidian.net/news/grounded/a-holiday-treat

 

Some highlights:

- Extra row of inventory space

- Longer range for nearby storage containers when crafting

- Can go up zip lines

- Water coolers in labs so you don't die of dehydration so easily when exploring them

- Longer range to see thrown weapons on the ground

- Rebalanced Mutations

- Can now name beacon flags

- Performance optimisation

- Now when you sleep you wake up at 6am so you can get the full day ahead of you

 

Great stuff. I'm still in the sort of mid-game (only done the hedge lab so far), so I can really benefit from these changes. I have started venturing out in other directions and have some decent armour and weapons now. I've decided I need to relocate my base somewhere better at some point (and make a proper building instead of just a big wall). It's currently mid-map, south east of the shrinker machine next to a stink bug and bombadier section where the grass turns to dry grass. The stink bugs that are nearby me are a real pain and there are mites that keep spawning in and making annoying noises. It also looks pap. I'm too far from good building materials as well. So the exploration is on. Found the haze zone and finally got some ladybug gear thanks to an anthill where a ladybug got swarmed.

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1 hour ago, Alan Stock said:

Big patch out today, I checked out the patch notes and there's loads of great quality of life stuff, plus new cosmetics/base stuff and xmas themed things.

 

https://grounded.obsidian.net/news/grounded/a-holiday-treat

 

Some highlights:

- Extra row of inventory space

- Longer range for nearby storage containers when crafting

- Can go up zip lines

- Water coolers in labs so you don't die of dehydration so easily when exploring them

- Longer range to see thrown weapons on the ground

- Rebalanced Mutations

- Can now name beacon flags

- Performance optimisation

- Now when you sleep you wake up at 6am so you can get the full day ahead of you

 

Great stuff. I'm still in the sort of mid-game (only done the hedge lab so far), so I can really benefit from these changes. I have started venturing out in other directions and have some decent armour and weapons now. I've decided I need to relocate my base somewhere better at some point (and make a proper building instead of just a big wall). It's currently mid-map, south east of the shrinker machine next to a stink bug and bombadier section where the grass turns to dry grass. The stink bugs that are nearby me are a real pain and there are mites that keep spawning in and making annoying noises. It also looks pap. I'm too far from good building materials as well. So the exploration is on. Found the haze zone and finally got some ladybug gear thanks to an anthill where a ladybug got swarmed.

 

Up on the nearby baseball is a good spot for a minor base, but yeah - You'll want a few outposts for easy navigation and not having to run miles to stash your stuff or pick up supplies.

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Quote
  • Activating the Dandelion Tuft right before hitting the ground will no longer prevent fall damage. Fall speed must be sufficiently slowed before hitting the ground for no damage to be taken.

 

Ah, this explains a couple of unexpected deaths earlier today.

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The new Zipline is the greatest thing I've ever seen. (Not just because of its functionality - the design is outstanding)

 

I've got a massive megastructure in the middle of the yard with zips going to the four main corners, so getting around is a breeze now. Before I'd have had to make more structures at each landing point for a fast way back, now there's no need.

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Yeah, the ZIP.R is amazing. That and the auto-jerky/roast from weapon damage have been excellent changes. It would have been easy for Obsidian to finish 1.0 and leave it but those two QOL additions have made the late-game a much better experience.

 

On that, the end of the Undershed is brutal.

 

Spoiler

I tried one Black Widow a few hours previous and inevitably got absolutely wiped so had been avoiding them every time I got a sniff of them. I imagine you can probably run past the one outside the lab but it felt like it was there to be fought.

 

Then to follow it up with Mant, who gets the fungus two-tap explosion.

 

I was fortunate to have level 9 T3 armour, level 7 weapons and maxed Milk Molars other than hunger drain so I could tank/parry most stuff but anyone who hasn't been exploring will surely struggle.

 

As it was, and considering how the game starts, purposefully jumping down into the valley of spiders and committing genocide with the Coaltana was hugely satisfying.

 

Think it's just the actual end after this so I'll clear up the optional bosses first.

 

As someone who's played nothing but solo melee, I'm interested in how this plays as a 4-person classic RPG with mages and rangers. I forged the staves, used them on a weevil and then shoved them in my bedside cabinet but a search on Reddit shows there are folk who swear by them.

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So the real end game is trying to get Pond Moss.

 

Seems perverse that there's only one T3 dagger, which requires a rare drop from an enemy that only exists in 3 places and takes ages to respawn.

 

In the downtime, I ended up crafting most of the gear from the optional bosses. To an extent, I wish I'd tried them out a bit earlier because the farmable bosses go down pretty quickly, without much fuss at this point in the game. When I started, I had no idea why anyone would be playing on Whoa but it makes sense at this point.

 

Not sure I have it in me to do all the MIX.Rs because the super ones seem to require building barriers around them but I guess this is why mushroom bricks are a stackable inventory item, compared to lugging planks around.

 

I can feel the "right, that's me" decision coming soon but it's really been fantastic for 70+ hours. Different from Subnautica in distinct ways but still scratches that same itch. And when the sun rises, it can look absolutely beautiful.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I've just started a game with my kids. They're already pretty au fait with it, but haven't gone too far in I don't think (at least, not from glancing through the last few posts about what's out there). My daughter started the game and is hosting it, and then made us hosts too. When I left the game, I seemed to get a local MP save game which it says my daughter started. Am I correct in thinking it's actually online, and any of us can dip in and out if we're not all able to play together? So like, what looks like a local save is actually a cloud save, right?

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have sunk about 70hrs into this since Christmas. It is brilliant (even as a single player game). A perfect survival game concept executed near flawlessly! I can only imagine it's even better with friends.

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Just started playing it myself. Bees and mosquitoes are currently my bane. They seem very awkward to fight, possibly my red ant club is not the ideal weapon for fliers. Arrows seem pitiful though, and faster stubbier weapons seem to need me to kill a bee/mosquito/wolf spider.

 

I can make zip lines now though, except I can’t because I had no clay on me and the mosquitoes murdered me when I went looking for some.

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It's tough when you're starting out but you'll be shanking those pesky mosquitos in no time. Learning when to parry is very useful against them, I do love the club but because the window to hit those bastards is so small I stick to the axe or sword (you may not have a slashing sword just yet). The tools are fairly useful as weapons so don't be mistaken into thinking they are purely for chopping grass etc.

There are spots of clay in isolated pools of water away from the meaner enemies. (I found a node not far from the big tac tac box of mints (which is near the mystery machine near the start)

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