Bootstrap Island

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a game by Maru VR Productions
Platform: PC (2024)
Editor Rating: 7.5/10, based on 1 review
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See also: Action Adventure Games, Sandbox Games, Survival Games, VR Games, Nature Games, Perma Death Games, Pirates Games
Bootstrap Island
Bootstrap Island
Bootstrap Island
Bootstrap Island

Bootstrap Island thrusts players into a lush, perilous paradise as the sole survivor of a 17th-century shipwreck. As an early access title still in development, Bootstrap Island shows tremendous promise even in its early stages.

The core gameplay loop of exploration, gathering resources, and crafting tools/weapons to enhance your chances of survival is instantly recognizable. Yet the VR perspective makes every encounter feel more immediate, heightening the tension. Sparse menus and intuitive control schemes ensure you remain firmly planted in the game world.

Like other survival games such as Rust and Ark, keeping your character alive is a constant challenge against the elements and aggressive wildlife. But with its rich atmosphere and engaging progression system, Bootstrap Island stands out as a thoroughly immersive VR experience.

Venturing Into the Wild

Bootstrap Island’s worldbuilding is arguably its biggest strength. The photorealistic tropical locale, complete with swaying palm trees, timber-framed wreckage, and artifacts hinting at the island's history, is a joy to take in.

Coupled with the rolling waves and animal calls in the distance, the island truly feels alive. It invites curiosity even as you must regularly contend with threats like ravaging boars and venomous snakes.

The day/night cycle also dramatically alters the tone and gameplay. Exploring the dense jungle or mysterious cave systems during the day brings feelings of wonder and discovery.

At night, holding a torch for light while you listen for approaching predators ratchets up the tension wonderfully. Overall, Bootstrap Island offers possibly the most atmospheric and fully realized VR survival experience on the market right now, challenging even heavyweights like Half-Life: Alyx.

Engaging Progression

While the core loop of gathering essential resources to survive is familiar, Bootstrap Island adds its own spin. An extensive crafting system rewards experimentation, with over 60 items to discover last we counted. Rather than slogging through menus, you physically combine materials before you. Gradually you’ll craft weapons, shelter upgrades, traps, and other aids.

The feeling of progression is stellar. With each new tool, you can access previously unreachable areas, gathering better materials to then craft even more impressive gear. It’s immensely satisfying watching your isolated camp grow into a fortified home base. All the while, journal entries gradually reveal the island’s backstory.

Fear the Consequences

Your decisions carry weight in this unforgiving environment. Exhaust your stamina chopping trees and you’ll move slowly, leaving you vulnerable to threats. Venture out unprepared at night and there’s a good chance some predator will make you its next meal. And if you die, it's back to square one, losing all but your journal progress.

The randomized elements also boost replayability. Resource placement, animal spawns, and even the island layout changes with each life. It keeps each attempt feeling fresh, testing your survival skills anew.


Bootstrap Island is already one of VR’s best survival sandboxes. The striking world, depth of crafting, and palpable risks make for an intense, perpetually engaging experience – even if the VR tech still lends itself to some technical hiccups.


  • Stunningly realized world
  • Addictive loop of exploration and crafting
  • Great VR immersion


  • Still in Early Access with occasional bugs
  • Can feel repetitive after awhile
  • Some visual glitches due to its VR implementation

Download Bootstrap Island


System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

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