Post news RSS Terraforming Earth: Introduction

Hello, my name is Andras Csibi and I'd like to introduce a game that started out as a pet project and ended up being my full-time commitment. Terraforming Earth is a procedurally generated platform puzzler set in the not-so-distant future when one day all life disappears from the Solar System. Controlling three separate robots with different abilities, you must help them work together to solve each level and get to the exit.

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Hey everyone!

My name is Andras Csibi, a solo developer working on Terraforming Earth. It is a puzzle platformer set on the deserted Earth after a mysterious extinction event wiped out all life from the Solar System.

You arrive at a deserted Earth with 3 separate robots with different abilities.

You control three separate robots with different abilities. Chronotron (blue), Gravitron (pink) and Nanotron (purple) have to work together to solve movement puzzles and get to the exit. (Please note that everything you see is placeholder art. A cooperation with a group of graphic designers is in the works.)

The basic format is inspired by Lost Vikings. I loved how the titular Vikings had to set aside the differences and conflicting personalities to use their unique abilities to benefit the whole group. I loved how the game designer made me feel smart when I figured out a tricky dependency. I wanted to create the same experience, while also introducing some time and space-bending game mechanics. See how Nanotron can teleport through a wall here? This enables cooperative puzzles, such as the team needs to get through a door, but the key is on the other side, so you have to get Nanotron to teleport through the door, and open it from the other side.

Nanotron teleporting through a wall

Here's another example of how the robots have to rely on each other. Gravitron enables its anti-gravity boosters to help Chronotron reach a space that would otherwise be too high.

Gravitron uses antigravity to boost Chronotron way up high

The main goal of each level is to find resources (metal and plastic in lore, coins and gems in the placeholder art) and get to the exit before the robots run out of power. There are multiple copies of each robot, and they are gathering resources in the background while the player is solving the main level. The autopiloted robots' efficiency is based on the player's performance, so they act as a multiplier of your score.

Score card at the end of a level

You can use the resources in the Factory. You can build more robots (they help you gather more resources in the background), 3D printers (they increase Factory capacity) and in a later stage, Nano-factories (small machines producing nanobots that clean Earth's atmosphere and restore life on Earth).

Factory screen

Once you have built some Nano-factories, the levels get more difficult since you also have to find the right spot to deploy them before getting the team to the exit. Watch how Chronotron deploys a Nano-factory and picks up some powerups it provides.

Chronotron is deploying a Nano-factory

Oh yeah. Each robot has a special power related to its ability and they require these star-shaped powerups to use. Chrontron can turn back time in case something goes wrong.

Chronotron is turning back time after blowing up

Nanotron's special power is that it can send out nanobots to scout the level. Since the robots are running on battery power, you have to beat the clock, which means you don't have much time wasting on exploring dead-ends. Nano-scouts help you strategize and plan the optimal route.

Nanotron sends out scouts to quickly look around

The ultimate goal of the game is to terraform Earth by deploying enough Nanofactories to cover the whole surface of the planet with nanobots. Every level you solve marks the passage of a day, so your final score depends on how fast you can restore life on Earth. The current record is 30 days, set by one eager playtester.

Oh, and by the way, every game and level is procedurally generated which means there is a ton of replay value in Terraforming Earth. Making sure the levels are solvable AND interesting turned out to be a very fun challenge to tackle. I'm happy to share the details of how I'm currently doing it in case some fellow game developers are interested.

To get a taste of the kind of cooperative challenges our friendly robots will face on the vacant Earth, watch this 49 seconds teaser (no sound). All of these layouts are generated procedurally.

Currently, my biggest challenge is to get eyeballs on the game. If you are a publisher, journalist or influencer and what you saw has picked your interest, please get in touch. I always have fresh builds for Windows and macOS and the game is relatively stable and bug-free. The easiest way to get in touch is through our Discord, however you can reach me many ways (see press kit).

I'm also looking for beta testers, so if you are one of the brave pioneers who get kicks out of regularly submitting themselves to half-baked products, please contact me!

Thanks for reading. Looking forward to terraforming Earth together! :)

fantasx - - 3 comments


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andrascsibi Author
andrascsibi - - 2 comments

Thank you.

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