We got to play a preview version of the upcoming colony survival sim Floodland. Here are our thoughts on Vile Monarch's new title.
Floodland is an upcoming colony survival sim set after the global warming catastrophe that raised the sea levels and completely destroyed the world as we know it. The world's biggest cities are no longer inhabitable, there's no electricity as we know it, and cars, ships and other big inventions are nothing more than scrap material.
Floodland's unique setting is its strongest point followed by a very distinct art style, which reminds me of Techland's Dying Light. Only after I finished the preview demo, and started researching more about Floodland for this preview, I've learned that Floodland's art director had a lead position on Dying Light, too, hence the similarity.
The game kicks off typically for your survival sim/city builder. A group of survivors need food, water and a dry bed so your main goal right from the get-go is to start exploring the nearby buildings, beaches, swamps and forests for precious rubbish and other materials to start building your colony.
Soon after you complete the early goals and provide your band of survivors with basic needs, you'll start exploring the region in search of other survivors, eager to work and help you build a proper, working colony.
You can assign people to work on different jobs like fishing, gathering rubbish, which is a very valuable resource early on, preparing meals, purifying water and so on. Each building that I got to unlock in the preview can employ two workers and its output depends on the number of workers assigned to the job, as you may have guessed.
I've noticed that Floodland shares some similarities with one of my favourite games of all time - Frostpunk. For example, the buildings seem to work in a similar manner, and both games put a heavy emphasis on the people and the player's relationship with them.
It's important that you make the right decisions even if it means fewer materials in the bank. Shutting down a workplace that's become unsafe for your survivors is of course always a better choice than forcing people to work there and perhaps suffer a work injury.
The game will present these decision-making scenarios from time to time and it's up to you to decide what's the best option for the people in your colony.
Shortly after you set up the main foundations for your colony, you'll get to explore more of the world and unlock exciting new technologies that will allow you to contact even more survivors. You can use old radio towers to send signals and build boats to get across large pockets of water to distant islands where you'll find new materials and knowledge, helping you to unlock more buildings and specialise your people for certain jobs.
While I didn't get to see how this affects the game in the grand scheme of things, I do think that specialisation can become an interesting mechanic in the full game.
Floodland build I played wasn't as balanced as I'd hoped but it's an unfinished game so this is totally fine as long as the dev team make some adjustments for the final version. Also, I'm hopeful to see some improvements to the overall UI which some may find confusing and overwhelming.
But the good news is that I liked what the Floodland demo had to offer and I will certainly return to this one on November 15, 2022, when Floodland is set to officially release on Steam.