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Endzone – A World Apart

Posted by GG Goblin On March - 30 - 2021

City building in a post-apocalyptic world.

 
After spending some time in Early Access, adding more content and balancing systems, Gentlymad Studios’ Endzone: A World Apart has now been fully released on Steam. While not every gamer will be looking at a way to simulate survival after the apocalypse in their gaming time as the world is falling apart outside, those looking to keep their settlers alive through all manner of radioactive disasters will find plenty to be excited about in Endzone: A World Apart. Just don’t eat or drink anything that glows.

 


 
Endzone has an extensive tutorial mode that will get players used to the idea of post-apocalyptic survival. Through this mode, players will be introduced to all of the different buildings and job roles for their little followers to take on, along with the regular disasters that can so easily bring a players settlement to its knees. And it all starts with a bus.

 
Having spent some time in an underground shelter while the planet became a slightly less uninhabitable place, a small group of survivors have emerged and taken to an old bus in order to find a new home without recycled air. The bus has now become the centre of the players fledgling settlement, and the resources it contains will only keep the settlers alive for a short while, and so it is time to start assigning roles and building.

 
There are a large number of different buildings available in Endzone, although many of them will be locked behind research and so won’t be available until later in the game. To start with though, it is all about getting a source of water and food. On the water front, a jetty pointing out into the lake will do fine. Assign some settlers as water gatherers and put down a structure to store the water and all will be good, at least for a while. Radiation is going to be a problem, but filters will be available at some point to counter that.

 


 
With that lake available, fish will work for food to start with. Just build a fishing hut on the bank and assign some settlers to start fishing. When it comes to food though, there are plenty of options from hunters that can track down the local wildlife, and gatherers foraging in the woodland, to farmers tending to crops or orchards. The hunters can even capture animals and keep them in paddocks to harvest their produce. Variety is the spice of life, and so the settlers will benefit from a variety of different food types.

 
With the essentials out of the way, players can concentrate on improving the settlement and making more hospitable. Scrap is perhaps the most important resource, aside from food and water, as it leads to pretty much everything else. Small piles of scrap can be gathered by anyone, while larger piles will need a dedicated building and worker. Once the scrap is coming in, recycler buildings can be placed to change that scrap into further resources, such as cloth and electronics, which can in turn lead to new possibilities. Electric will be a joy for the settlers, and cloth is needed for all of the protective equipment that will keep the settlers safe.

 
As the player progresses with their settlement, production chains will pop up. For example, foresters will cut down the trees for building, while also planting new trees, but that wood will also be used to make charcoal for filters. Before long, the player will have a plethora of people in their settlement cast into different roles. Providing them with decent housing will see the settlers couple up and produce offspring, who will in time grow up to become workers themselves. Micromanaging everyone in the settlement is easy and players are able to switch out roles in order to make up shortfalls or deal with situations, such as a drought, quickly.

 


 
The buildings keep on coming, with the likes of a graveyard for survivors to mourn at, and a weather station to warn of incoming extreme weather. The most interesting though is the expedition station that allows the player to send out survivors to places of interest. These are really fun distractions from the day to day running of the settlement and see the player having to pick the correct team and equip them as needed in order to explore areas and bring back resources, all with a short narrative. Adding more of a sense of threat than simple radiation, raiders will also take an interest in the players settlement. Defences can be researched and built, but essentially the player will have to choose whether to pay the tribute they demand or face having them try to trash the place.

 
Aside from the long tutorial, which really does a great job of teaching the player how to play, there is also the survival mode, which is more or less a sandbox, and some set scenarios. These scenarios drop the player into a situation and ask them to fix it, focussing on different problems. There are also ways that the player can make the game easier or more difficult, tailoring the challenge to their skill level.

 
Visually, Endzone: A World Apart is not going to win any awards. While the post-apocalyptic world will likely not be the most pleasant place to look at, the models are a bit bland, and lack detail when zoomed in close. However, the game doesn’t need to look great close up as the game will nearly always be played from a distance. What is important is that all of the different buildings can be distinguished from one another, so the visuals have no effect on the playability.

 


 
Endzone is a nicely polished post-apocalyptic city-builder. It may lack the personality or flourish of some other similar games, but there is plenty to unlock and deal with as the player micromanages their population and puts them all to work. Fans of the genre, specifically games such as Frostpunk or Banished, will find plenty to enjoy in Endzone: A World Apart.

 

 ★★★★★★★★☆☆ 



 

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