It dawned on me this week, moments after I gnawed off the crusty arm of a guy who tried to kill me, that Sons of the Forest, the hardcore survival sim that currently dominates Steam. (opens in new tab), is a deeply funny game. Not so much because of the cannibalism part (although I laughed the first time I roasted a human limb for 12 seconds and then ate it whole), but because I turned around to find my trusty but fumbling NPC companion Kelvin ankle-deep in a pond, staring into the water. He was trying to pull fish out of the pond with his bare handssomething I asked him to do about 15 minutes before and then quickly forgot about.
I felt bad, because Kelvin was clearly so desperate to please me that he wasn’t going to let his lack of a fishing rod, hooks, bait or fish trap work. (opens in new tab) prevent him from completing my arbitrary task. I was about to give him a well-deserved pat on the back when I tripped over a fish. No, it’s not a fish. There were 13 fish. A dozen trout piled haphazardly behind Kelvin, who presumably didn’t have time to organize them because he’d just pulled another one out of the water. Kelvin is a fishing god! Of course he is! This game is so dumb. I like that.
I’m not the only one laughing with Kelvin. He became everyone’s best favorite boy (opens in new tab). I wouldn’t want to survive in the woods without him. But Kelvin, like all of us, has gaps in his knowledge that could get him into trouble. For example: man absolutely cannot and should not be trusted around a tree house.
Kelvin says “fuck this particular tree”
I asked Kelvin to bring me some logs… from r/SonsOfTheForest
It’s really cool that Sons of the Forest’s free-form construction makes it easy to pick your favorite tree and make it your home. Treehouses are not only a tactically sound idea (invading the locations can’t get to you), but easy to expand. Unfortunately, Kelvin does not value vertical architecture. Currently, when you ask it to gather logs, it’s programmed to simply chop down the nearest tree. Even if it’s the tree attached to the exact treehouse he’s gathering logs for in the first place.
At first I thought it was an anomalous bug. Developers would make Kelvin smart enough not to routinely demolish his own house, right? But… uh, yeah, no.
@acrossfrosty (opens in new tab)
♬ original sound – AcrossFrosty (opens in new tab)
@fragdcrream (opens in new tab)
♬ original sound – CREAM (opens in new tab)
@superswoldier (opens in new tab)
♬ original sound – SWOL (opens in new tab)
Sons of the Forest is out and Kelvin is the worst pic.twitter.com/v1xgVdnNGLFebruary 25, 2023
“I can’t even get mad at this guy. I can’t even get mad at him,” the SWOL streamer said after losing a promising base to Kelvin’s buffoonery. And truth. Kelvin is too innocent and well-meaning to hold a grudge. Even when he’s literally destroyed everything you’ve worked for, the genuine thumbs-up he sends your way is enough to get your heart racing.
@pumakubus (opens in new tab)
♬ were finally landing – lily (opens in new tab)
@skyknightgaming_ (opens in new tab)
♬ original sound – SkyKnightGaming (opens in new tab)
@theaveragebum (opens in new tab)
♬ original sound – Dooney (opens in new tab)
Kelvin’s woodsy exploits have become so notorious that he’s getting the totally appropriate Breaking Bad meme treatment.
Kelvin STOP from r/SonsOfTheForest
@blackaf1energy_ (opens in new tab)
♬ original sound – trollfacersadhappy (opens in new tab)
Have fun with physics
To be fair to Kelvin, he is just one of the leading causes of sudden home loss. The game is pretty meticulous about how much punishment a structure can take before it explodes into a pile of Lincoln logs. All it might take is a misplaced ax swing and:
it took us an hour to build this house in Sons of the Forest so this happens… 💀 pic.twitter.com/kICISVK5r8February 24, 2023
Then there are some physical interactions that aren’t fully explainable. I’m not sure what’s going on with the snow in this location, but I’m making a note of it for Mario to stomp on my friends ASAP.
@andy_perry4 (opens in new tab)
♬ Aesthetics – Tollan Kim (opens in new tab)
Sometimes physics is on your side. The spear is a particularly good weapon to keep handy, in part because it can do things like this:
@scratty_clips (opens in new tab)
♬ original sound – Scratty (opens in new tab)
Forest shenanigans have definitely reached a new level now that players are discovering what’s possible with the 3D-printed sled. These snowy mountains are just as fun going down as they are going up:
The sledding in Sons of the Forest is… something else. pic.twitter.com/C42kHlZnSQFebruary 28, 2023
@whorroricon (opens in new tab)
♬ original sound – ranelan (opens in new tab)
I’m amazed at how safe sledding is in the Children of the Forest world. I probably would have gone hours without giving the sled a ride for fear of smashing my head on a tree, but you seem almost indestructible when you’re tied up.
Turns out, you don’t even need a sled to tear up the slopes. Apparently, if you pick up your laptop while on a hill, it will adopt the physical properties of a rubber ball.
@sluglyyt (opens in new tab)
♬ original sound – Slugly (opens in new tab)
Want the best sledding in Sons of the Forest for free? Just open your book while on a slope. 😂 #sonsofttheforest pic.twitter.com/BdlVIocGR3February 28, 2023