WARSAW, Poland – February 3rd, 2021. Mechanistry has released the demo of its upcoming city-building game with beavers. The demo is a part of the Steam Game Festival that begins today at 10 AM PST. While cutting the game’s content to create the demo, the developers decided to deprive the aquatic mammals of water and hit them with severe droughts. The demo is available on Steam until February 16th unless Canadian animal activists take notice.
In Timberborn, players control evolved species of beavers, split into several factions, living in a world where humans are gone. Using wood and metal scavenged from human ruins, the beavers create settlements of stackable buildings. They also need to deal with water: they put up dams and irrigate the land. Water – or lack thereof – is also a focus of the game’s first demo.
“We were wondering what we can cut from the demo so that players still want to pay us for the full game afterwards”, muses Bartlomiej Dawidow, Timberborn’s lead designer. “We’ve just implemented dry seasons, and after looking at the current game industry’s standards, we realized removing water from a beaver game was the best worst thing we could do”, he says.
After a number of in-game days, the rivers on the demo map dry up. The player needs to prepare for the disastrous event by stockpiling food, putting up dams, digging canals, and building infrastructure to keep the ground watered and arable. “People also need to care for the growing village and the beavers’ faltering wellbeing. Good luck with that”, says Dawidow.
For Mechanistry, a small indie company, the demo is not just a first publicly playable showcase of Timberborn’s features. It is also more than a chance for free marketing if Steam Game Festival’s algorithmic overlords give the game their blessing and put it on the front page. The demo features fresh music and art including a completely new beaver model. “Our beaver no longer looks like a traumatized Mr Potato Head, yes, but this has nothing to do with the unsubstantiated rumours about a copyright infringement”, points out Dawidow.
The demo comes after seven months of closed beta testing – originally scheduled to last two months. It serves as a preview ahead of the Early Access launch – originally scheduled for last year’s autumn. According to Mechanistry, the EA should begin in the first quarter of 2021, but an anonymous communication manager from the studio suggests yet another delay may happen.
Michal Amielanczyk, Communication Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org