Darwin Project's second and final open beta takes place this weekend

Darwin Project, the battle royale game that in December gave us what may be the most tenuous article introduction in PC Gamer's glorious history, will hold its second and final open beta session this weekend. From February 23-26, players will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the rugged, frozen beauty of the great Canadian north, while simultaneously attempting to carry out a mass-murder spree against nine like-minded strangers. 

This beta session will enable private matches, Spectator Interactions over Twitch (they were previously restricted to the Mixer platform), and Show Director ratings, the system that gives one player the power to "keep matches interesting and fair." I suspect the "fair" part may be somewhat discretionary: As creative director Simon Darveau explained in December, the Show Director "is basically god in control of his own game," added to the mix to give Darwin Project a Hunger Games-style edge. 

"The show director can actually get his community to vote directly on the streaming channel," Darveau said. "He can say, for instance, one of the players should be [hunted], who should it be? He'll launch a vote, and basically stream viewers will vote for who is to be hunted and this happens directly in the game." 

Sure, that sounds fair.   

For players who like to watch, a number of "special guests" will stream Darwin Project gameplay for an hour ahead of the launch of the open beta, which will kick off at 12 pm PT/3 pm ET on February 23 and run until 9 am pt/12 pm ET on February 26. The 1.7 patch notes, detailing the changes coming to the game for the open beta weekend, are up at scavengers.ca.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.