Indie Game Roundup: World Building

Thursday Triple is a weekly roundup of Indie Games from around the Net.

MMOs have always lived in a special place of my heart ever since I picked up my first grindfest during the early years of Jr. High. Whether it was meeting people, organizing raids, or just hanging around cool locations, the best worlds were ones that gave the player enough freedom to come up with their own emergent plays. Sandboxes, in particular, were particularly rewarding when you took a step back and realise you’ve created a community where there was once only pixels.

Das Tal

By Fairytale Distillery

Advertised as a sandbox MMORPG, Das Tal is set in a persistent world with customizable session-based servers. PvP can be found everywhere, but cooperation is ultimately beneficial as you shape your character and construct your settlement. Finding and fighting for resources will be the key to survival, and the economy is entirely player-driven. I could easily see myself either joining a band of raiders to loot random camps, or attempting to build a monopoly controlled by a syndicate of many.

Dream big or go home, I say.

For a quick look at the style of the game, check out the trailer below.

Das Tal is currently in pre-production.


By Philipp Lenssen & Scott Lowe

Now here’s a universe where the tiles you set down in these 2-dimensional worlds are drawn by the player. Everything is built by the community, from the characters to the weather to the levels themselves. Imagine giving paintbrushes to a room full of children (because we’re all children at heart) and saying, “I’m going to walk outside and these walls better be clean when I’m back.”

Fat chance.

Sometimes though, something beautiful will come out of it. Other times, well, this is the internet after all.

I wish I could draw.

I wish I could draw.

Hit up their site at to join.


By Cubical Drift

If there’s one thing about this game’s first impression it’s wow, that’s gorgeous and rather ambitious. The idea is a universe filled with worlds shaped like cubes, where everything is modular and can be taken apart and rebuilt, bounded by the limitations of your imagination. Planets3 goes further than most sandboxes with regards to character progression, having NPCs that the player will take quests from if they want to learn skills such as blacksmithing and cooking.

But if farming is too sedentary for you, there’s also combat and dungeons and, of course, many many places to explore.

The obvious comparison will be to Minecraft, but to that I say, this is far from a shallow clone. There’s such great potential here that can already be seen in the depth of the design.

Planets3 has two weeks left on their Kickstarter. Be sure to support them if you want to see more!

the author

Executive Editor of ManaPool. A student of game design, Amber is currently writing from the frozen north that is Canada. She has a penchant for tactical team-based games and a particular taste for theorycrafting. Want to discuss community and player experience? Talk to her!

  • Evil Tactician

    Just chipping in to what Amber wrote here – we’ve gone through the length of actually backing Planets3 as it looks *that* interesting. We like it when games push the boundaries and try to do something well, different.

    I’d recommend opening your wallet and throwing some money at those guys – we need more people to come up with ambitious ideas.

    • Lachrymosity

      Yes! I have nothing more to say other than yes!