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A 3D browser game from independent developer Oskar Stalberg allows players to build out a planet's surface into compelling world. The tools are extremely limited but some of what it allows players to build has been quite impressive and shows what a little ingenuity and free time can create.
PC Gamer picked up the story from Rock, Paper, Shotgun, where they report that it's possible to play this little game – simply named Planet – either from the comfort of your browser or by downloading it from the website.
The project isn't so much a game of challenge, but a little experiment based on someone's willingness to craft a protuberant series of structures on top of a small planet. Planet itself has some geometric manipulation tools, not unlike some tools featured in games like Civilization or Cities: Skylines. There are four main biomes that can be utilized, including forests, glaciers, towns and grassy plains. There are three different resizing tools, and four different planet sizes.
The mixture of the biomes and sizes of the planet will drastically alter how the structures and designs on the planet will look. Using the left mouse button will place down the biome while using the right mouse button will remove the placement of the biome. Repeatedly clicking the left button will add on top of the selected block, causing it to protrude out of the planet based on each click. This allows players to stack different biomes on top of each other.
One of the users on Rock, Paper, Shotgun pointed to their medieval depiction of Coruscant from Star Wars, the iconic city with multiple layers upon layers of architecturally unique and equally ginormous buildings. You can check out how the medieval Coruscant looks with the Imgur album below.
I wasn't able to make anything that complex with the little amount of time I invested into it, which was little more than just dabbling with the controls and seeing how much depth the project offered.
Obviously, mileage in play-time will vary based on what sort of planet you want to create or how you want to completely warp the surface to look like a face, look like a lollipop or mimic the Death Star.
As the previous articles pointed out, the little browser title has no goals or objectives, and there are no enemy AI to compete against. It's not like Tropico or Age of Empires – it's a casual game. Usually these are considered “zen” titles, a little like Journey or flOw, where there are no actual antagonists or pressing goals to complete.
These kind of projects are out and about across the web, and usually they're good for breaking the monotony of killing a bunch of things, or putting balls in or through goals, or racing to a finish line.
It should be noted that while I didn't have any problems running this prototype, it is a resource-heavy browser app. Additionally, some of the users on the Rock, Paper, Shotgun article noted that it was demanding enough to freeze up a laptop. So if you can't regularly run Unity games in apps or similar 3D API in a browser, you might want to steer clear.
You can download the game or play it for free over on the official Planet website.