We may earn a commission when you buy through links in our articles. Learn more.

One of 2024’s most promising FPS games is getting a big new playtest

Part BioShock, part Sons of the Forest, and part fever dream, one of the most intriguing new FPS games of the year will be playable soon.

Serum Steam FPS game: A hero injects their arm while confronting a monster in Steam FPS game Serum

Some games just leap off the screen. It only takes a single image to recognize the original Half-Life, for example, or the blood-soaked, pixelated textures of Doom and Quake. A mix of survival and surrealism, one of 2024’s most intriguing new FPS games is also one of the most eye-catching; its vivid, sickly neon greens arresting your eyes the second they meet the monitor. It’s a little bit BioShock, a little bit Sons of the Forest, and there’s maybe a little Stalker in there, too. Nevertheless, this one has a unique visual flair and a clever mechanical gimmick, and you’ll be able to play it yourself real soon.

This is the very appropriately named Serum, a survival FPS game with a feverish, narcotic twist. You awaken on a mysterious island shrouded in dull green fog and populated by a variety of hostile creatures. Endlight’s woodland horror springs immediately to mind as you gather natural resources, craft makeshift weapons and provisions, and try to keep yourself alive versus environmental hazards and a litany of flesh-hungry adversaries. But there’s another, even bigger problem.

YouTube Thumbnail

Permanently strapped to your arm is a countdown timer – with every passing second, you move inexorably closer to your demise. The only way to keep yourself ticking is with the eponymous, ominous serum, which you must scrounge, craft, and cook at regular intervals.

I’m reminded of the Zombrex mechanic from Dead Rising 2, or perhaps Jason Statham in Crank. The serum does more than just keep you alive, however. Like the ADAM in BioShock, you discover more exotic concoctions, it can provide new abilities and status effects, turning you into an ultra-destructive walking biohazard as you explore the various biomes and hidden regions.

Complete with online, PvE co-op, Serum is scheduled for release in Q2 of 2024. But you don’t need to wait that long. A huge new Serum playtest begins on Wednesday April 24 at precisely 4am PST / 7am EST / 12pm GMT / 1pm CET. It runs for a full seven days, concluding on Wednesday May 1, and you can sign up on Steam right here. If you’re still not convinced, Serum was one of the top 50 most-popular demos during the recent Steam Next Fest, so it’s surely worth checking out ahead of time.

You can also try some of the best multiplayer games, or maybe the best survival games available right now on PC.

You can also follow us on Google News for daily PC games news, reviews, and guides, or grab our PCGN deals tracker to net yourself some bargains.