The island in Sons of the Forest is one heck of a lot bigger than the one in The Forest, at least four times bigger. That means more places to build a base, more land to explore, and more cannibal camps to steer clear of. It also got me wondering — could I walk around the whole Sons of the Forest island, sticking to the beach? A good few hours of game time and several in-game days later, I had my answer.
I’d decided to travel alone, leaving Kelvin behind. I didn’t want this special soul to end up just another head on a pole, so with some reluctance, I bid him farewell and began my journey. I’d decided to turn right out of my meager beach-front base and keep going.
The beach was hauntingly empty, perhaps because I’d only been on the Sons of the Forest island a couple of days. I’d heard its inhabitants get more aggressive as time progresses, so it made sense to get an early start.
The sea, on the other hand, was a little too lively for my tastes. Every now and then I’d catch sight of something breaking the water. I was too far away to tell what it was, but it put paid to any thoughts I had of heading out there.
The first sign of human civilization was a concrete jetty, with two golf buggies apparently abandoned. There were a few cases scattered around, which I plundered for supplies. I was still scratching my head when a cannibal stepped out of the jungle.
He wasn’t sure what to make of me, but my previous adventures had taught me to chop first and act questions later. Moments later, I was shoving his severed head into my backpack. I’m not entirely sure why.
I was questioning the wisdom of this action when I ran into my first cannibal camp. In another misguided move, I decided to show my mastery of the axe by waving the head at them. I was able to skirt the camp, while still remaining on the beach, but as I backed away, I wondered if it was a mistake to a) have murdered one of their number and b) waved his noggin at them.
I put plenty of distance between us, and after crafting a spear, just to be safe, I put up my tent and settled down for the night.
Mercifully, I didn’t wake up surrounded by cannibals. I did, however, turn around to discover Kelvin walking down the beach towards me. I’ve no idea how he found me or, indeed, why he appeared. But not five minutes earlier I’d been absentmindedly spearing a rock, so I was glad for the company. We continued our Sons of the Forest journey together.
Kelvin didn’t have any comment to offer, but I’ve come across at least four canoes, with no sign of their inhabitants. Were they captured by the cannibals? I had to skirt a second camp today, though I saw one who appeared to be wearing camouflage gear.
What if, far from being victims, those canoeists had “gone native?” And what about me? Was I just one bad day away from plunging a fork into Kelvin’s face? Should I attempt to send this special boy away?
Kelvin is gone. He’s not dead; he just disappeared. One minute he was walking behind me, and the next he had just vanished. Was he just a figment of my imagination? Perhaps he was too innocent for what came next. I was set upon by a pair of cannibals, one running around on all fours. The ferocity of my attack was such that the other one fled. I didn’t stop when he fell to the ground but instead continued my assault.
Moments later I was placing his severed arm in my backpack, mumbling something about “the right to bear arms.” I dumped the rest of him in the ocean. Maybe whatever was swimming around out there would take care of it.
It’s probably for the best that Kelvin — if he was real — didn’t stick around. This beach is turning out to be much longer than I thought. It occurred to me that I could consult my GPS, but unwisely, I decided to do things the old-fashioned way.
I thought I saw Kelvin again, but as I drew close I saw it was a strange, pale man, tied to a post. I resolved to give him a hand, which somehow turned into me beating him around the head with that now rotting severed arm. This wasn’t as funny as I thought it would be, and he broke free. No amount of slaps could bring him down, so, jettisoning the limb, I dispatched him with my trusty axe. I didn’t take any souvenirs this time.
I spent too much of today swimming, with the beach giving way to a solid rock face. I could feel the shallowness of the water, but still, I dreaded that something was going to reach out and drag me off into the depths. So my next action was, on reflection, utterly foolish.
I spied what appeared to be a red life raft bobbing in the water. I don’t know what I expected to find, but this splash of color was so appealing compared to the blandness of the beach that, before I knew it, I was swimming out towards it.
I was still swimming when a massive shark broke the water. Frantically, I swam backwards. Would it have been quicker to turn around? Maybe, but I didn’t dare take my eyes off the beast. Suddenly, the beach seemed very welcoming indeed.
It wasn’t all bad news though, Kelvin is back, and stumbling across another suitcase, I discovered a rather fetching suit, which he’s now wearing. All the blood does spoil the look a little, but I’m sure it’ll wash off.
Kelvin has gone again. It’s a shame; it was such a nice suit.
The cannibals attacked in force. I ended up trussed to a post, but they’d not deprived me of my knife. I cut myself loose, and gathering my equipment, (The cannibals themselves were oddly absent.) I got my bearings.
I discovered, to my horror, that I was atop a cliff, far above the beach. Not wishing to take the long way down and risk more encounters, I gingerly edged forward. My mind swims just thinking about it, but sliding from ledge to ledge, I was soon back in the welcome embrace of the beach.
But the beach wasn’t welcoming for very long. I was so happy to be away from that village that I didn’t pay nearly enough heed to a strange seaweed-covered mass. As I sped past, the ground erupted and some kind of gore-covered, humanoid creature leapt out at me. It felled me, but stumbling to my feet, a lucky axe strike ended it.
As I gawped at the carcass I could see she, or rather it, was partly clad in the flesh of some other being. I had a vision of doing the same, abandoning my journey and burying myself beneath the warm sand.
Finally, the end is in sight and not a moment too soon — I’m down to my last packet of breakfast cereal. At least I now know that the Sons of the Forest island is not, despite appearances, endless, and one can circumvent the entirety of it. It’s not a journey I would wish on my worst enemy, but I can take pride in my success.
I can see the top of my beach hut, and from the figure that approaches me, it appears that Kelvin has found his way back home. Funny, I don’t remember him having nearly that many teeth. Or being made out of hands. Still, it’s good to be home.