Stranded: Alien Dawn goes to a tropical hell in new update

Alien planet colony survival sim Stranded: Alien Dawn has dropped a new update with a new region of the planet to survive: Saltu, a hot, wet tropical region that will provide entirely new challenges to even seasoned survivalists. 

Saltu's most vicious problem is that it's always hot. While that might sound nice—no need for heating fuel, nor heavy clothing—it does mean that everything, food included, rots a lot faster, and keeping cool indoors will consume a lot more electricity than heating ever did. Rather than winter, you have a wet season where heavy rainfall will happen continually, and a summer dry season, where unbearable heat can kill your crops. There are also vicious new tropical diseases to confront that can only be stopped by antibiotics, and a spreading blight that kills plants unless infected ones are culled.

Stranded: Alien Dawn is a colony sim that impressed us on release last year, something between RimWorld, The Sims, and a tower defense. "It never really approaches the depth of a game like RimWorld, but there's still plenty of complexity in the technology, base-building, and especially the management of my long-suffering little colonists," said Chris Livingston in our Stranded: Alien Dawn review.

For those who delight more in the combat side of Stranded, tropical Saltu has new insect nests to deal with. These are nasty clusters of the mantis/scissorhand enemies nesting in one spot, though clearing them out will yield valuable supplies of silicon. Meanwhile, though, there are fewer Shrieker nests to harvest carbon from.

To aid you in these new challenges you can now drop camp and area flags, so that survivors can be restricted to working and living exclusively in specific areas. But the biggest new thing is a suite of advanced survival tools to use: Survival kit bedrolls and rations for journeys outside the base, harvesting tools to better grab crops, and respirator masks for toxic ash events and dust storms. There are also new signal flares to light up hordes of attacking alien bugs at night, and the update hints at other tools for seeing at night as well.

You can read the full update notes on Steam, and you can find Stranded: Alien Dawn on Steam for $35, 20% off until July 13,.

Nice spot, Eurogamer.

Jon Bolding is a games writer and critic with an extensive background in strategy games. When he's not on his PC, he can be found playing every tabletop game under the sun.