When I was younger I loved Sim City. I loved the simplicity of it. The way the systems intertwined. I loved understanding that and exploiting it.
Modern city building games? It always seems like there's too much going on there.
Block'hood is different. Block'hood takes it back. And it also reinvents things. I am very keen to play this game.
It's like Sim City, the original, with a modern, innovative twist: you can build vertically, horizontally, whatever.
But much like the original Sim City, the success or decay of what you build is dependent upon what you build around it. In an almost abstract sense, it's a city planning game:
Each Block you create has Inputs and Outputs. For Example, a tree might need water to create oxygen, and a shop might need consumers to create money. By understanding how each block is dependent on other blocks, you can create a productive network. Make sure to optimize your production and generate abundant resources. The game has 20+ resources that are specific to every block, so the amount of relations are enormous!
I love this. I love these concepts.
Block'hood is the brainchild of Jose Sanchez an architect/Game Developer from Los Angeles. This game is an attempt to link his two areas of work in meaningful ways. He hopes Block'hood will help people understand the eco-technologies available to us today, and how they can co-exist.
Those sorts of high falutin goals are all well and good, but what really strikes me about Block'hood is how polished it all looks -- the aesthetic, the layout. It's clean, simple and extremely pretty. Usually games of this kind -- particularly if they're being developed by small teams -- are a bit crusty and dry. This game is original, interesting and has an art design that matches its ambition.
It goes into early access... today at some point. Or perhaps tomorrow considering we Australians live in the future when it comes to timezones. Either way, I'm looking forward to playing this. You can find out more about Block'hood here.