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Screenshot:: The block

If 2022 is going to be the year of anything, it’s been the year of the city builder, a strategy subgenre that has grown in popularity recently, especially for PC. While most efforts have focused on large-scale cityscapes and Viking outposts, and others make city builders with even more systems, The block goes in the opposite direction.

If you have ever seen or played Cityscapeor Doromantic, The block has such an idea. take city-building back to its bare essentials and allow the player to do something other than drop things onto the map and be happy with what comes out.

The block scrapes things even closer to the bone, however. before that, both games simulated a village, or at least the surroundings of a village, The block interested in only one… block. That’s all you get. There are no guidelines to follow either, you just get a very small space and you can build whatever you want on it.

At the start of each game, you’re randomly assigned a style (like European and Middle Eastern), you can choose your block size, and then you’re given a single-tile map that’s pre-populated with something. From there, you’re given your own tiles and must build from the center, placing a new structure (or park or street) only when it touches an existing one.

The Block – Official Launch Trailer

It is the totality of the experience. No clocks, no meta, no optimally built paths, no need for electricity, no public transport, no traffic congestion. It’s almost more of a game than a game, like a LEGO architectural set or a box of wooden blocks, because there’s no right or wrong way to build anything.

it was me mildly critical Ixion last week for his repeated interference with what I love most about urban planners; the zen-like experience of nurturing something and watching it grow. That’s all there is, and while this is very basic stuff (and priced accordingly at just a few bucks) I love The block for its simplicity.

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