Rim World is a colony survival game and a very good one at that. It is still in early access but is close to releasing in full. The games developer Tynan Sylvester has said that its something that he could keep adding to forever but after five years it’s time to release the full product. The game is full of systems to keep track of and explore and can be played as easily as you like or as intricately and complex for more hardcore players. With the modding community already pouring over this game it is endlessly expanding giving the 40+ hour players, more colonies, more wealth, more disasters to play with.
Rim World on the surface looks like a very simple game, the graphics remind me of Prison Architect and for $30 and the miniscule file size of 204mb means this game is accessible for everyone. I cannot believe they have squeezed everything that this game has to offer into 204mb, this game will run on even the worst heat affected laptops both on Mac or PC. But as you pour the hours into it you realize there is a lot of game here. Just at the character selection screen where you choose your three original colonists is seriously impressive. They all have different backgrounds, abilities, age, health ailments, addictions, needs, what gives them joy. You can spend enough time here trying to plan out the perfect three before you have even hit start game.
The main objective is to take your three characters who have landed on a foreign planet, build them a settlement, research to make them smarter, travel and explore the world to reach the final goal of building a ship, and at least one of them escaping the planet. Or….. the game ends if they all die. You have the option of three different storytellers who act as the AI for your duration on the planet, some are more aggressive and throw at you more disasters while others are better at giving you more time to build your base and explore.
The world is a 3D spherical and is made up of hundreds of 30×30 tiles, you select one for you base but be mindful of temperature and mountains. Both play a significant role, good temperature can extend the length of crop growing seasons but also increase the rate of diseases, mountains provide great defense and minerals but leave little area for crops. As your base progresses, you can send colonists out in caravans to expand what’s around them. You can also set up separate colonies and also find a ship, which is often way off in the distance and can take 80 or so in game days to reach to allow your colonist to escape. There are plenty of other factions on this world, some are volatile while others will often trade goods with you.
Technology is a huge aspect of this game, electricity is very important because it powers your gun turrets to keep those raiders at bay, but also keeps you warm in winter and cool in summer. Yes, there is a full weather cycle here, your crops won’t grow in winter and your residents will get heat stroke if they suffer through an Australian Summer. Air cons are also helpful for making a room refrigerated so that your food doesn’t spoil as quickly, thus making winters easier to get through.
Whilst playing Rim World your imagination is the only limit. I can see that this is a game that I’m going to continuously come back to over the years, it can be the simplest of games or the most complex and I don’t think that I will ever master it, but deep down it is damn rewarding and really good fun.