In recent times, indie games have come to represent a microcosm of the gaming industry that they had initially sought to circumvent. These games have gained significant importance and have spawned a complete ecosystem that enables small studios or even individual creators to realize the games they have envisioned without undergoing the grueling task of creating everything manually. A crucial tool that small developers rely on for its scalability and ease of use is the Unity Game Engine. Unity provides developers with the ability to create, import, and share their creations, which other developers can use for their projects. Colony Simulator is one such project built on the Unity Game Engine, and it serves as the focus of this review.
Indie Marc is the developer behind Colony Simulator, which he published on Steam. This game serves as a city-building and colony simulator template for other developers, although it could be enjoyed as a game in its right. Colony Simulator’s primary objective is to build a budding colony, and players are required to manage their colonists’ hunger, sleep, and happiness while collecting materials, refining, cooking, and defending their colony. While the game may not be visually impressive, it compensates with the sheer number of features it offers.
When starting the game, players are provided with an HQ building and three colonists to get them started. Players can select individual colonists to assign tasks, make them eat or sleep. However, players cannot batch-select colonists to feed them. Instead, they must select each colonist individually and click the eat button repeatedly until they are full. After completing the first set of objectives, players are free to play the game as they please. There are structures to build, technologies to research, and creatures to defend the colony from.
As players progress through the game, they will need to balance resource gathering, upgrading, and constructing to survive increasingly destructive raids on their colony while expanding and exploring the map to gain access to new resources. The game’s pace quickens considerably after players have completed the research required to unlock tools such as axes, which makes collecting wood much easier. The game also features other upgrades, such as chainsaws to help cut down trees in a flash.
Despite the game’s satisfactory playability and well-designed balancing, the raids may become too intense too soon. Nonetheless, Colony Simulator is a good proof of concept and a model for more significant things to come. Indie Marc could flesh out the game into a more extensive experience with better assets if he ever desired. However, the current game’s presentation and visuals are off-putting. For instance, players cannot exit the game from the pause menu; they must shut the game down from the task manager.
In conclusion, Colony Simulator is an impressive game that serves as a template for more significant projects, although it could be enjoyed as a game in its right. While the visuals may be lacking, the game’s charm and well-designed balancing make up for it. Players who intend to use Colony Simulator for its intended purpose as a base for their game will undoubtedly find it useful.