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This cute sim lets you build tiny gardens at the end of the world

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I like my post-apocalypses to be verdant. Keep your radioactive deserts and give me nature devouring the corpse of civilisation. That's Cloud Gardens' pitch: help plants grow amid urban ruins at the end of the world. It's an aimless, meditative little garden sim, and it's coming to Steam soon. 

Where developer Noio's previous games, Kingdom (opens in new tab) and Kingdom: New Lands, were driven by expansion and objectives, Cloud Gardens is a chill sandbox where you just do your own thing. There's a six-chapter campaign where you need to strike a balance between nature and civilisation, but that's the only guidance you'll get. 

Ultimately you're just creating interesting spaces and creative dioramas. Like Townscaper (opens in new tab), it's entirely focused on the joys of creation, though you'll also need to do some planning and nurturing. To get all your greenery to thrive, you'll need to plant seeds in the right places and learn what they need, and then start placing salvaged objects for them to grow around and take over. 

The entire time I was playing through The Last of Us Part 2, I couldn't shake the feeling I'd be having more fun just chilling out in Seattle's wilderness, setting up a nice post-apocalyptic apartment in the middle of the half-concrete, half-natural forest. I want the aesthetic of the post-apocalypse without all the murderous psychopaths. 

Cloud Gardens is getting an Early Access launch first, and according to the Steam page (opens in new tab) it's expected to last around three months. The date for that hasn't been announced yet, but it will be soon. 

Fraser is the UK online editor and has actually met The Internet in person. With over a decade of experience, he's been around the block a few times, serving as a freelancer, news editor and prolific reviewer. Strategy games have been a 30-year-long obsession, from tiny RTSs to sprawling political sims, and he never turns down the chance to rave about Total War or Crusader Kings. He's also been known to set up shop in the latest MMO and likes to wind down with an endlessly deep, systemic RPG. These days, when he's not editing, he can usually be found writing features that are 1,000 words too long or talking about his dog.