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Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey shows off its player-driven exploration

There are no maps or things pushing you to complete missions or objectives in Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey, according to creative director Patrice Désilets. In a new video, he breaks down what our hirsute ancestors need to do to survive as they start their long march through evolution. 

Familiar survival demands require your attention, like sleeping and eating, but players are otherwise free to explore the world with their ape, from the ground or the tree tops. There will no doubt be lots of climbing, as one would hope from the creator of Assassin's Creed. 

Going for a wee wander or a quick snack isn't without its dangers, unfortunately. You might come across something nasty out for a slither, or some other predator looking for a tasty ape. Luckily, you can engineer a fight between them, slipping away when they're busy trying to kill each other. Even if you avoid all the other beasties, however, you might just end up getting food poisoning from a dodgy egg.

It sounds like the only set goal is surviving and passing on that experience to the next generation. Eventually, millions of years down the line, you'll have a structured tribe that can make tools and conquer territory. You'll even be able to beat up a saber-toothed cat. 

Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey is due out this year, and keep an eye out for more videos soon. 

Fraser Brown

Fraser is the UK online editor and has actually met The Internet in person. With over a decade of experience, he's been around the block a few times, serving as a freelancer, news editor and prolific reviewer. Strategy games have been a 30-year-long obsession, from tiny RTSs to sprawling political sims, and he never turns down the chance to rave about Total War or Crusader Kings. He's also been known to set up shop in the latest MMO and likes to wind down with an endlessly deep, systemic RPG. These days, when he's not editing, he can usually be found writing features that are 1,000 words too long. He thinks labradoodles are the best dogs but doesn't get to write about them much.