There’s no shortage of games with mutants, post nuclear wastelands or alien invasions; scenarios that – right now at least – seem impossible. But there is one scenario, not that far in the future, that is very likely to play out: a world ravaged by climate change and inundated by melting polar ice caused by rising temperatures. And while debate rages over how much of an impact man is having, it’s a fact that our current trajectory will result in flooding, extreme weather and more. This post-catastrophic world won’t involve fantasy monsters – life itself will be hard enough.
Floodland is set in this post-catastrophic future, a city builder set in the ruined wetlands of a devastated Earth. Climate change has occurred to disastrous effect in this universe, with its initial impact setting off a chain of catastrophic events for humanity. Our supply lines go down, our electricity goes down and, soon enough, communications are down. The global population becomes a fraction of what it once was.
In Floodland you are one of the lucky ones: if there is such a thing. Leading a small group of nomads, it's up to you to try and build something resembling society from the ground-up once more. Or perhaps that should be the waterline up.
Most of us now wouldn't have the first idea about how to hunt an animal, maybe a few more know how to fish (when they have the tools). In Floodland you'll balance resource-gathering with re-learning basic survival skills, turning even those who were once online journalists into capable farmers and fishers. You'll start with tents and sticks, but can grow into a thriving town as your inhabitants learn new tricks and rediscover pre-calamity technology.
A new city in this context isn't just about numbers. It's about building an infrastructure that can support people in a new and hostile environment: a place of shelter where there's food, drinking water, basic medical care, and safety from scavenging bands. Once the basics are taken care of, you can start to think about tech and specialised roles. But this is not a world where resources and time are abundant.
Redemption, of a sort, is possible. Not all humans agree on the best ends however and, even as we fight over the flooded remnants of the world, you'll come across different factions intent on their creeds. You'll set your own laws and, ideally, most of your society will agree with them. Other societies may well have different ideas: does democracy still work when we're all waterlogged, or is a benign dictatorship going to get the job done?
Societies can disagree. And peace is always an option but, with resources this scarce, it may not be the first one.
The world in Floodland is, for now, unimaginable. Rising sea levels have left the cities and towns we know as islands at best, swamps and bedraggled rafts of survivors at worst. Rebuilding in this world starts with your own settlement but that's far from the end, and as your capabilities grow so does your capacity to explore, help, and hopefully build for a new kind of future.
Floodland releases November 15 on Steam. In this post-catastrophic world every game is different: each new start randomly generates the map, the formation of the world, and what happens. Each playthrough is unique, even if this vision of the world to come is singular.
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