Last week, we got our first taste of The Forest, an upcoming first-person survival-horror game for PC and Oculus Rift, set in a mysterious forest where players must scavenge supplies, build and prepare to defend against a nocturnal indigenous society of cannibals. If you read that last sentence aloud in one dizzying breath, then you have a good idea how excited we are for The Forest.

But here's the thing: there isn't much information out there. So we contacted developer Ben Falcone for a tour of The Forest. Falcone himself has a background in visual effects – he's worked on films such as Tron: Legacy and 300 – explaining the high levels of polish already seen in pre-alpha footage. So it's no surprise he cites films The Descent and Cannibal Holocaust – the latter an Italian film from 1980 about a tribe of cannibals deep in the Amazon – as influences, along with games Minecraft and Tresspasser.

The Forest will not be Falcone's first game: he shipped End Night last year on iPad, an open world horror game on a smaller scale. But this time, Falcone is not alone. He is one of three core developers working on The Forest, though there are plans to expand as development moves along. "It's definitely an ambitious project for a small team, but along with the three key team members we do utilize outside freelance artists, programmers and animators," Falcone said in an email with Joystiq. "As we move closer to release we're looking to expand the team slightly. I think in some areas having a small key group gives us an edge in fast production and quick decision making."


While Falcone enjoys the agility of a small team, he says playtesting will be an issue as the team moves closer to launching the paid alpha version later this year. "Which is why we plan to release an alpha version to the public in order to get both player feedback, and work out any issues with bugs and fixes that are needed."

The Forest paid alpha build will launch later this year. The game is also currently vying for a spot on Steam through Valve's Steam Greenlight.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.