Sons of the Forest solves the survival game grind by letting you tell companions to punch trees

Sons of the Forest
(Image credit: Endnight Games)
Sons of the Forest on Consoles

Sons of the Forest screenshot

(Image credit: Endnight Games)

There aren't any ports for Sons of the Forest on PS4, PS5 and Xbox but they could come in the future

Sons of the Forest, the hotly anticipated follow-up to 2018 survival darling The Forest, has a novel solution to the genre's resource-gathering blockade: dump it on someone else. 

Ahead of the sequel's impending February launch – the result of "one last" delay, you know, for old time's sake – IGN (opens in new tab) released a hands-on preview for Sons of the Forest earlier today, and the game's companion system is one of its more interesting tidbits. The most interesting part may be the CatDog-like human centipede seen near the start of the video, but I'm trying not to think about that. 

Sons of the Forest opens with another plane crash on another mysterious island, but this time you're joined by a fellow survivor: Kelvin, some sort of soldier or security guard who's suffered a bit of head trauma, by which I mean his brain is all but leaking out of his ears. Fortunately for you, Kelvin can still contribute to your noble cause of not getting eaten by cannibal mutants. You'll have to do plenty of work yourself, but many tedious jobs can now be assigned to a Sons of the Forest companion - an AI helper. 

You can ask Calvin to collect specific resources and bring them back to base, or directly to you, using quick commands – stuff like rocks, wood, and food. You can give him items or have him follow you, too. Calvin will apparently get upset if you treat him poorly, so don't go working him into the ground. 

Calvin isn't the only companion in Sons of the Forest, either. IGN's preview features a three-armed, three-legged mutant woman named Virginia, and despite her apparently cat-like demeanor, you can eventually enlist her help in maintaining your camp. It seems there are more companions to be met as well, plus you can always form your own army of unpaid laborers in Sons of the Forest's eight-player co-op. 

Our updated list of new games 2023 covers the big releases to keep on your radar.

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature.