Time to get excited about Western Rye — survival crafting in the Wild West


We love indie games at GamingTrend, and it doesn’t get much more indie than two brothers coming together to make their own game.  Nixalon Studios is bringing their first project to life, entitled Western Rye.  In it, you play cowboy Bill Cooper, a middle-aged ex-Sheriff trying to retire to a quiet life in the country.  When a plague called the Western Rye strikes the quiet little town where he lives, he finds himself gunslinging for his own survival once again, doing whatever he has to do to survive.

Western Rye looks to be an amalgamation of the likes of Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare, Resident Evil 4, The Last of Us, and more, blending survival horror, crafting, and in-place construction mechanics the likes of which we’ve seen in games like Valheim.  In the game, Western Rye is a deadly plague that starts with fevers and nosebleeds, but rapidly degenerates the host’s body further with weakness, coughing, and hallucinations. As the disease advances, patients experience diarrhea and reduced appetite, leading to significant weight loss over several months, giving them a corpse-like appearance. Eventually, the fever’s pathogens attack brain cells, transforming patients into highly monstrous abominations, as we can see in the trailer above.

Let’s dig into the gameplay details:

Western Rye is a survival game offering both third and first- person perspectives. Players explore the world on foot, horseback, or by train, managing Hunger and Thirst meters with perishable food that spoils over time. Weapons degrade and require regular maintenance, including oiling to prevent malfunction. Crafting, cooking, and brewing are essential skills, alongside gathering resources like wood and minerals for sale to vendors. Players can also craft furniture, build houses, and team up with friends for cooperative gameplay. Dynamic weather, including visibility-reducing sandstorms, intensifies challenges. Customizable outfits allow players to tailor their appearance to suit their adventures. Hunting animals for food and bounty hunting outlaws offer additional ways to survive and thrive in the rugged frontier.

Western Rye is set in the 19th century, during the golden era of the cowboys, It is set in fictional American frontier during a deadly plague called the “Rye Fever”.

  • Open World Exploration
  • Realistic Survival Mechanic
  • Customize Character Outfits
  • Resource Gathering
  • Crafting
  • Cooking and Brewing
  • Robust Building System
  • Dynamic Weather
  • Environmental Storytelling
  • Trading and Bounty Hunting
  • Inventory and Item Management
  • Multiplayer


Journey through a vast and immersive western landscape teeming with hidden secrets and dynamic environments. Beware of ruthless outlaws and even the undead! Or, experience the thrill of riding the rails and immerse yourself in the essence of the Old West!


Manage your character’s hunger, thirst, and stamina to survive in the wild frontier.


Just in time for the Gold Rush! Venture into this rugged frontier to gather resources, craft items, furniture, and build your home. Delve deeper by mastering the art of cooking hearty meals and brew the finest moonshine!


Immerse yourself in a narrative woven into the very fabric of the frontier, where every detail, from abandoned wagons and journals to deserted cabins and weathered signs, and ultimately discover the truth behind the apocalypse.


Engage in commerce with merchants across the frontier or pursue outlaws for bounty rewards to earn money and expand your wealth.


Plan your adventure, oil your guns, arrange items strategically to optimize space and watch for decay, ensuring your resources remain usable amidst the challenges of survival.


Play with friends in this wildest version of the west!

As I mentioned, this is the work of two brothers, and they are preparing to move into Early Access.  We recently got a quick view of the game’s construction mechanics in this Reddit thread, which is what drew my attention to this game in the first place.

We’ve also gotten our first taste of the combat in another recently-released video:

Western Rye Alpha Combat and Exploration Gameplay 2024

Powered by Unreal Engine 5, there’s no doubt that the game is gorgeous.  Hopefully we won’t have to wait long to see the game for ourselves — we’re working with the team directly to preview this one for ourselves.  We’re big fans of survival crafting around here, so this is one we’re excited to see.   It coming to PC, Xbox Series X|S, and PlayStation 5 eventually, but will hit Early Access on PC in the near future.

You can check out the game on Steam and Wishlist it to stay tuned in for updates from the team, as well as staying tuned right here for more news and previews!

Executive Director and Editor-in-Chief | [email protected]

Ron Burke is the Editor in Chief for Gaming Trend. Currently living in Fort Worth, Texas, Ron is an old-school gamer who enjoys CRPGs, action/adventure, platformers, music games, and has recently gotten into tabletop gaming.

Ron is also a fourth degree black belt, with a Master's rank in Matsumura Seito Shōrin-ryū, Moo Duk Kwan Tang Soo Do, Universal Tang Soo Do Alliance, and International Tang Soo Do Federation. He also holds ranks in several other styles in his search to be a well-rounded fighter.

Ron has been married to Gaming Trend Editor, Laura Burke, for 28 years. They have three dogs - Pazuzu (Irish Terrier), Atë, and Calliope (both Australian Kelpie/Pit Bull mixes), and an Axolotl named Dagon!

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