Subsistence is a sandbox, first person, solo or co-op, PvE open-world survival game. Struggle to build a base and gear-up in the hostile environment. Defend yourself from wildlife and AI hunters (who also build bases in the world). Progress your base technology for advanced item crafting and upgrades.
Recent Reviews:
Mostly Positive (226) - 71% of the 226 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
All Reviews:
Mostly Positive (3,868) - 70% of the 3,868 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Oct 25, 2016

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“I want to start getting more players involved, so I can continue shaping the game based on their feedback.

The early access version is only intended for those who are interested in participating in the game's development as I continue to move forward with the project.

I am the sole developer of the project, which I work on in my spare time as a passion project. I feel this is an important disclaimer for those considering playing the game, so that players can make a more informed purchase decision.

Edit: As of March 2018, I have decided to leave my full-time employment to dedicate myself to the game and its continued development.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“I plan to keep the game in EA up until I'm confident there is a sufficient content and depth to the gameplay.

I'm not in a hurry to move out of EA. I feel EA is perfect while I continue to add features and make changes to the game.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“There is no fixed direction that the game is taking. The game is evolving naturally based on feedback from those playing the game, and watching gameplay.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“The game currently offers a singleplayer and co-op PvE sandbox experience, and has many features already in place (including base-building, crafting, animal husbandry, farming, AI hunters, etc).

I encourage anyone who is considering trying out the game, to first watch some YouTube gameplay videos. There have been many gameplay series from many YouTubers, which show the current features (and the progress the game has made).”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“I'm unsure if the price will change after or during EA. I want the price to be reflective of the potential enjoyment a player can take from the game.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“Since releasing early builds of the game (December 2015), I have been active on YouTube and the Steam discussions to get feedback from those playing and watching the game.

The feedback has had a huge influence on how the game has evolved, and will continue to play a vital role in it's continued development.”
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Recent updates View all (60)

June 16

Alpha 49 Update (16th June 2019)

Alpha 49 is primarily focused on introducing a new underground cave system, currently accessible only via deep-water scuba diving. Expanding on the later-game resource trees and adding further world exploration to the later-game progression. Along with many other new items, gameplay and graphical improvements, fixes and tweaks.

Scuba Diving:
Players can now craft scuba diving gear to explore the deep waters in the world. The equipment is crafted at the new “Diving Station”, a powered crafting station that can be crafted in the BCU.

Diving Station:
Must be placed within the radius of a BCU and is used to craft both the Diving Gear and the required O2 tanks.

Diving Gear:
The diving gear uses the chest armor slot on player’s clothing profile (however provides zero damage or warmth protection).

O2 Tanks:
The O2 tanks are single-use items and will consume their O2 contents while the player is wearing diving gear and submerged in water.

While in use, the standard O2 meter will update to show the tank-count and current tank O2 amount. As one tank depletes, the next one will take over and start being used.

There is a new explorable cave system deep underground. Currently this area is only accessed via a dormant lava tube deep underwater in the largest lake. If you venture down there, be sure to pack extra O2, or risk stranding yourself with no means of escaping alive.

Building is not restricted in caves, although in the future I may need to put some restrictions on blocking entrances (on open public co-op servers). Resources are limited however, so players would have to transport resources if they wanted to start construction projects.

Crystal and Coal:
Throughout the caves, deposits of Crystal Ore and Coal can be found and mined. Mining crystal nodes causes more wear on tools than other ore types.

Crystal can be processed down in the refinery to produce raw crystal, which is used in later-game crafting recipes and item upgrades.

Coal can be used as an alternative fuel source for campfires/woodburners, lessening the demand to chop wood for fuel. It’s usages may be expanded in future updates.

Note: Cave ore nodes have a much longer respawn cool-down. So if you clear a cave area, it will take quite some time to repopulate.

Mining Hunters:
Groups of mining hunters patrol the caves. Unlike other hunters, these guys pack double barrels, .44’s and recurve bows, so can be dangerous.

I have plans to expand on their behavior and roles in future updates.

Clam Shells & Pearls:
Clam shells now spawn in the lakes in the world. Bash them open using an axe or pickaxe and harvest the pearl inside.

While these shells spawn at all depths, they are more common in deeper waters.

Circuit Boards:
Circuit boards are a new item, crafted at the workbench. They have been woven into the later-game crafting and upgrade recipes.

Ore Node Destruction Physics:
I’ve increased the size of the ore nodes in the world (also corrected their placement alignment). I added a more realistic destruction physics simulation to when they break apart. I think this makes harvesting nodes more satisfying, but let me know what you think.

Large Storage Unit:
There is now a larger 42 slot storage unit, which can be crafted in the BCU. This unit is intended as more of a lavish, later-game convenience item and should be a nice QOL improvement for established players maintaining large bases.

Blood Decals:
Taking damage, bleeding, harvesting animals, etc will now cause blood splatters in the surrounding environment.

This means that violent battles can result in quite a mess. Some players may not like this, so I may make a toggle for this in a future update.

Premium Weapon Parts:
Currently only used for 4th-tier weapon upgrades. These parts are currently only acquired from specialty crates spawned from detonating BCU crackers on established hunter bases.

The larger (more established) bases yield greater number of these parts. Destroying an underdeveloped base will yield none.

Fixed Loot Despawning Near Player:
Sorry for the delay on this fix (I know this was frustrating). Plants and ore nodes in the world will no longer despawn while the player is nearby.

Daytime Color-Grading and Foliage Density:
Previously the daytime color-grading had a heavy yellow tint. I've dialed it back to a more natural pallet, where the blues and greens can pop more.

I’ve also been experimenting with denser ground foliage detail (see image above), so you’ll notice certain areas look a bit different.

New Underwater Environment Detail:
Previously, as these areas were inaccessible, they had almost no detail. I’ve now added lots of new rock formations and detail.

Distance Visibility Culling:
Since the last couple of map expansions, I hadn’t updated the settings for visual culling on distant objects, meaning certain areas were making needless draw calls on very distant objects (especially on the west side of the lake). I’ve updated it to be far more aggressive. It’s unlikely you’ll notice distant objects popping out from view, but the stress on performance is now reduced in these areas.

Fishing Mechanic Tweaks:
A couple of tweaks to the fishing system: If a player is too close to the bait, the less likely fish will bite. Fishing in very shallow water will reduce the chances of hooking large fish.

I’ve been working on some other cool improvements to the fishing system, but couldn’t get it wrapped-up for this update, but it will follow soon.

Tool Degradation For Mining Nodes:
Tools now take usage damage when mining nodes (not currently for chopping wood).

Prevent Unneeded Med Usage:
Accidental usage of bandages, health kits and antidotes will now not consume if the player is not in need of that particular med type.

Camera Smoothing While Stepping Up Ledges:
Previously when stepping over geometry, the camera would instantly snap to the new Z axis. I’ve added smoothing to make this feel more natural. This is a subtle change, but I think makes a marked improvement to the feeling of play.

New Language - Romanian:
Huge thanks to VaeVictis for localizing this version!

Other Notable Changes:
  • Slugs cost 1 less iron.
  • Fixed bug that allowed items to be shift-clicked into the bed.
  • New water splash particles in rivers.
  • Fixed bug where HC profiles weren’t being successfully wiped in a fail-state.
  • Reduced storm sounds while underwater.
  • Fixed bug that could cause rain particles to play while underwater.
  • Added new underwater caustic lighting fx (moving light ripples).
  • New axe/pickaxe underwater swinging sound.
  • Extended reach of axe and pickaxe.
  • Increased size of kelp.
  • Moose have had a slight stats boost.
  • PvP kills now get logged in the launch log file (allowing server admins to identify them if they wish to ban).
  • New console command “coord” will display the local players map coordinates (type “help” to see a list of available commands). This is primarily to help with trouble-shooting bugs with the community.
  • Deer and moose will less frequently choose to swim in lakes when fleeing from danger.
  • Fixed bug where you couldn’t switch ammo types when clicking the ammo-type icon while weapon was in slot 1.
  • Fixed bug where hunters would fire random shot at the ground when fleeing to cover.
  • Fixed co-op client audio bug where sleeping players would make reloading sounds.
  • You now get slightly more gunpowder and casings when crafting at the workbench.
  • Fixed glitched floating ore nodes and kelp at the foot of he western river.
  • Fixed edge-case bug where moose would choose to stay in a particular area and stop roaming the world.
  • Fixed hammer impact/repair sounds not playing for clients of co-op games.

Thanks for everyone's support and patience while I worked on this one. If you haven't already, please join the community on the Steam forums and the official Discord server (invite below). I welcome your thoughts and suggestions for the game moving forwad. Please stay tuned for more updates as the project continues to evolve!

All the best,

Discord invite:

Twitter: @playSubsistence

Continued Translation Support Credits (in no particular order): I hugely appreciate the support.
Spanish (David Lascasas)
Hungarian (Erb Ármin)
Portuguese BR (Thiago Schumacke)
German (LPCaiser)
Italian (Marcello Brancaccio, Federico D. Ravagli)
French (Anthony Charrault)
Czech (Dílna U mnicha)
Danish (Morten Sørensen, Jesper Christensen, Bartholomeo Alexander)
Dutch (Damster_NL)
Russian (FRAME)
Turkish (Çagla Gurbet)
Swedish (Mattias Gustavsson)
Norwegian (Christer Djuvik, Svein Tore Stegemoen)
Romanian (VaeVictis)
67 comments Read more

March 28

Update Details (28th March 2019 - Alpha 48)

Double Barrel Shotgun:
A new shotgun can now be crafted at the workbench. The Double Barrel is a powerful weapon and has a much tighter spread than the pump-action, making it suitable for mid-range combat as well as close.

It’s dual barrel allows for two shells to be fired in quick succession, however then requires a fairly lengthy reload, so be tactical with your timing on shots/reloads.

I know it seems strange that other weapons are still crafted in the player crafting menu. As new weapons are introduced, the higher power firearms will slowly move over to the workbench.

The flashlight can be attached as with the other firearms.

Players can now craft a Distiller (located in the BCU). This item must be placed within range of your base and allows you to distill your own Alcohol (“moonshine”) overtime.

Alcohol requires potatoes and sterilized water to be crafted in the Distiller. It takes time to craft, so be sure to queue it up and plan ahead.

The motivation behind this is to add greater purpose and benefit to potato farming, and to open up craftable flammable items for players to play with.

Molotov Cocktail:
Alcohol can be used to craft Molotov’s in the workbench. Molotovs are effective at damaging bases, and dealing with mobs during attacks.

When a molotov explodes near a player/animal/hunter the initial blast will catch them on fire. They will remain on fire for up to 10 seconds. Jumping into water will put the fire out. Hitting multiple targets with the initial blast is an effective way of dealing a lot of damage.

Molotov fires will burn for up to 20 seconds, dealing damage to all buildables/players/hunters/animals that touch their flames. The player who throws the molotov will get a distinctive sound and hitmarker display as the molotov fire inflicts damage.

Base items (such as storage chests, generators, etc) protected by a wall will not take fire damage if the flames originate from the opposing side of the wall (even if flames may sometimes appear to clip through).

Hunters Will Use Molotovs:
During attacks, hunters will now sometimes use molotovs instead of grenades. I think it adds to immersion to fire-fights to have flames illuminating the battle (and creating no-go zones in the flames).

New Tree-Chopping Animation:
I’ve added a subtle tree-shake animation and falling leaves while players chop trees. It’s a small tweak, but I feel this makes the process feel less static and more satisfying.

Big Networking Performance/Scaling Improvements:
A large part of this update was focused on continuing to improve network play. I was discovering that some long-term co-op profiles would suddenly start lagging and becoming unresponsive for clients. This would occur when extremely large bases were built on the map.

This was caused by having too many dynamic items in the world and exhausting the available network channels on each client connection (not bandwidth related). The main culprit was physical loot in the world (1000’s of items), with each item using its own network channel.

I’ve added a new system (which uses only a single channel) which reports to the client on harvestable items in their proximity.

This has big benefits for clients, servers and solo games:
  • Both client and server now only spawn dynamic items for loot in their immediate view (less rendering and tick cost).
  • Far greater stability and scaling for servers with huge bases.
  • Less demand on the server to determine if items are relevant to clients (much less stress on CPU).
Other than performance gain, players should notice no difference in gameplay. I’ve also set a building cap for co-op games (to ensure stability) which will display in the hud for all players if it gets near. The cap is high, but I’ll be working to increase this as I continue work.

Player Count Increased To 10:
With the recent improvements to server performance, I’ve increased the max count from 8 to 10. Please let me know if your experience problems.

Ore Nodes Not Showing For Clients:
This was being caused by the server deeming nodes “not relevant” to clients, so as a side-effect of the new system detailed above, this problem has finally been eliminated.

Zero Harvesting Lag For Clients:
Previously clients of co-op games had a noticeable lag on hits registering while harvesting trees and ores, and when picking plants in the world. I’m now using client-side predictive logic to eliminate this lag entirely, so clients will have a much more responsive experience while harvesting!

Shotgun Slugs:
Players can now craft high-powered, single-projectile slugs (currently only used with the double barrel):

Slugs do extreme damage but are expensive to craft. Press Left-Alt (rebindable) to switch ammo types while the weapon is equipped, or click on the ammo-type icon above the weapon on your toolbelt.

The male character model will now grow a beard if alive for a long time. Dying will reset this. It’s a simple feature without any transition states through growth, I just thought it added a bit of variance to character aesthetic.

Animal Housing Changes:
I’ve reduced the slots in the animal housing. The previous 8 slots was too much and encouraged early-game players to keep far more animals than they could afford. It now starts with a single slot and additional slots can be added via the upgrade menu.

New Hitmarkers:
Hitmarkers (that show when you hit an enemy) have been increased in size. They will also now flash red when the shot was a headshot, giving the player better feedback during combat.

Oxygen Meter:
Suggested many times by players; an oxygen meter will now show at top-center while diving.

Explosions Camera Shake:
If standing near an explosion, the camera will now shake based on the power of the blast. This should increase immersion during attacks. I may add a toggle for this in a future update.

Weapon Holding Position:
I’ve pulled in the first person weapon holding position for all firearms in attempt to give better body presence (also while aiming down sights). I think it feels better, but let me know your thoughts.

Co-op Hardcore Fail Message:
Co-op hardcore games end if one of the team dies (and there are no bed spawns). Previously other players would wonder why the server exited. Now all players will see a message indicating the name of the player who died.

Danish Language Support:
Credits for the translation (thank you for the support):
  • Morten sørensen
  • Jesper Christensen
  • Bartholomeo Rudolph
Other Notable Changes:
  • New sound for tools breaking.
  • Current ammo types now show above all toolbelt weapons while the inventory is open.
  • Chicken stew now gives +hydration.
  • Fixed bug that allowed items to be lost via shift-clicking into the fabricator.
  • Slightly increased speed at which loot will repopulate after harvesting a zone.
  • Fixed newly-posted co-op chat messages fading out while the player has the chat open.
  • Fixed glitch where animal house water meter would briefly fill to max when adding cooked foods.
  • Fixed bug where queued crafting meters would visually continue while game was paused.
  • New first person sprinting animation for the M9.
  • Selected ammo type for a weapon (such as premium/grenade arrows) now persist through a save/load.
  • Prevented hitmarker showing when player takes environmental damage.
  • Condition icons are now cleared when player dies.
  • Fixed oven not showing pans cooking when loading a save.
Thanks you so much to all the players who have been posting thoughts and discussions on the Steam forums/Discord server/FB page/etc. I try to read it all and see lots of great ideas and insight posted regularly. This all helps immensely while I continue moving forward with development. Hope everyone’s having a great week, please stay tuned for more updates!


Discord invite:

Twitter: @playSubsistence

Continued Translation Support Credits (in no particular order):
Spanish (David Lascasas)
Hungarian (Erb Ármin)
Portuguese BR (Thiago Schumacke)
German (LPCaiser)
Italian (Federico D. Ravagli)
French (Anthony Charrault)
Czech (Dílna U mnicha)
Danish (Morten Sørensen, Jesper Christensen, Bartholomeo Alexander)
Dutch (Damster_NL)
Russian (FRAME)
Turkish (Çağla Gurbet)
Polish (Daniel Łokietek)
102 comments Read more
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About This Game

Subsistence is a sandbox, first person, solo or co-op, PvE open-world survival game. Struggle to build a base and gear-up in the hostile environment. Defend yourself from wildlife and AI hunters (who also build bases in the world). Progress your base technology for advanced item crafting and upgrades. Farm crops, raise small animals and harvest and refine resources to rise in dominance in the world. If you enjoy open-world sandbox survival games, resource gathering and grinding to build a base, you may enjoy playing the early access version of the game.

Current features:

* Singleplayer and Co-op PvE sandbox experience.
* Crafting mechanics.
* Dynamic base building.
* Weapon upgrade system.
* Mining and refining of ores.
* AI Hunters (with AI base building).
* Farming.
* Animal husbandry.
* Food cooking mechanics.
* World day-night cycle.
* Temperature change based on time-of-day and altitude.
* Character hunger/thirst/strength mechanics.
* Character clothing system.
* System for inviting/removing players to access bases.
* Central power system for bases (base items require power to function).
* Npc enemy leveling system.


The public Early Access is intended for those interested in supporting the project and participating in it's continued development. You will most likely experience balancing issues, performance issues, bugs and missing features. If you are looking for a complete gaming experience, I would recommend allowing some time before trying out the game. There are many YouTube game-plays showing the current state of game. I am the sole developer of the project, which I work on in my spare time as a passion project. I feel this is important to mention, so that those considering playing the game can make a more informed purchase decision. A full detailed list of the updates since launch can be viewed here:

Goals of the project:

The aim is to integrate the kinds of base-resource micro-management typically found in RTS titles, into a boots-on-the-ground shooter. Each base has an underlying economy of power and raw materials that must be maintained and expanded in order to rise in dominance.

The focus is not of primitive survival (although there are many elements during the early-game), but instead a focus on the base, its security, technology and resources.

Mature Content Description

The developers describe the content like this:

Mild violence hunting and harvesting various wild animals. Fictional gunfights with AI humans.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows 7+
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E4600 2.4ghz or Athlon 64 x2 Dual Core 5200
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Geforce GT 460 or Radeon HD 3800
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Storage: 1500 MB available space
    • OS: Windows 7+
    • Processor: Quad Core
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GTX 760+ or Radeon HD 6950
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Storage: 1500 MB available space

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