Everwild, Rare’s co-op action-adventure game set in a world of magnificent flora and fauna, was first revealed in 2019, but now, three years later, we arguably know less than we did back then. The reasons for that are complex, but there’s still plenty to be excited about if you’re waiting for what should be a visual feast at the very least. Here’s everything we know about Everwild so far.
Release date and “reboot”
Everwild is currently without a release date, in part because the game has allegedly gone under an internal reboot, with development on the game reportedly proving more difficult than once expected. According to a VGC report, the game has been “completely” rebooted under Rare’s Gregg Mayles (who also worked on Sea of Thieves) following the departure of Creative Director Simon Woodroffe. The game is now said to be “optimistically” targeting a 2024 launch.
That leaves Everwild in a very uncertain state, at least according to what we last heard publicly. A “complete reboot” with a turnaround of two or three years may not be enough time for what is likely to be Rare’s next major project, but then again, games are so often delayed anyway, maybe the 2024 date being floated by some credible reports can be thrown out as highly unlikely.
Matt Booty, head of Xbox Game Studios, did try to quiet some concerns last year following the report of a reboot. “What is Rare known for? They’re known for creating new IP and creating worlds. And I’ll say, when you look at it from the outside and you hear words like ‘reset’ and ‘restructure,’ those are probably a little more definite and a little more extreme than what really happens as a game comes to life,” Booty said on Kinda Funny.
Everwild: So…what is it?
We can’t be sure what Everwild will be in 2024 or beyond, but from trailers and leaks, we have some understanding of what it was going to be, anyway. Everwild has a similarly vibrant art style to Rare’s most recent game, Sea of Thieves. But it trades the salty seas and sandy beaches for lush forests and bioluminescent creatures.
In this setting, trailers indicate players would be restoring magic to the land. There also seemed to be an emphasis on living harmoniously with nature, and while some more predatory creatures have appeared in trailers, the game’s original direction apparently excluded all combat. That design direction was cited as one of the issues that caused the delay, so it’s unclear if today, under Mayles’ leadership, the game will still be combat-free. Releasing a AAA action-adventure game without combat does sound intriguing, as it’s something so rarely even attempted.
The game’s cinematic trailers imply co-op gameplay, which makes sense following the co-op-heavy Sea of Thieves just came from the same studio four years ago and remains an ongoing focus for it. In the trailers we’ve seen so far, there is an emphasis on magical powers and taming, or perhaps just protecting, wild fantastical beings that somewhat resemble animals here on Earth, such as deer and wolves. As to whether or not it is an open world or not, what kind of character selection it includes, and what the central gameplay loop is, these are all great questions, but the answers are only found behind locked doors at Xbox Game Studios and Rare offices for now.
Currently there are far more questions than answers revolving around Everwild, but a studio as entrenched in the history of video games, like Rare is, has probably earned some patience from many fans. Hopefully we find out more about this one at the Xbox-Bethesda Showcase in June.
Preorders and Xbox Game Pass
Everwild isn’t available for preorder just yet, which makes sense since we don’t even know what it’ll be. However, you can bet Xbox Game Pass subscribers won’t need to preorder it–or even purchase it–for access. As Rare is a Microsoft-owned studio, Everwild will launch directly into Game Pass whenever it arrives, be that 2024 or beyond.