In addition to being an intriguing conundrum that makes you wonder if the Sol system is merely an interstellar zoo and we are all here (especially Giraffes) for the amusement of our alien zookeepers, the Fermi Paradox is also a fun indie game experience. I have really enjoyed playing the game even if it isn’t yet complete – though calling it a game is a little odd given that it’s more of an interactive simulation than a game.
You play the role of a cosmic ‘gardener’ playing around with different star systems and races by choosing paths for them and influencing their evolution. While you click on flares to build up your synthesis resource pool, time keeps ticking away in the background. There will be sapient life eventually, and you can choose the dominant species that will eventually form great civilizations that require a little micromanagement to succeed.
When nurturing a species, it’s crucial to exercise caution because clicking on flares can have either a positive or negative effect. If you’re not careful, one or two incorrect clicks could lead a species to annihilation – before they ever get to realize they’re not alone… Usually, building synthesis will allow you to reduce negative effects at a cost of synthesis or magnify them for more synthesis. The survival of these species is in your hands as the intergalactic gardener, and if one of your species turns out to be a weed, it might need to be weeded out so that other, more aesthetically pleasing species may survive.
Although the species options in this little independent game look relatively constrained at this stage based on the star system of origin, you can still have a lot of fun with the Fermi paradox. There is a lot to do and you can genuinely have a great experience playing it.
When life finally crawls out of the primordial soup, you can choose to spend or gain synthesis while spawning a species to create a great or terrible species, or you can just take the safe all-purpose option to produce something useless and easily discarded – like humanity.
Surprisingly, the game’s colour scheme is what I appreciate best. Everything looks beautifully retro and the colour scheme is relaxing. For some reason, the artwork strongly reminded me of out of this world. You can lose many hours cultivating and eradicating races for your own delight.
Occasionally, races will send transport ships to other worlds in order to settle, communicate with, or exterminate sapient inhabitants. You must be careful with space programmes; sometimes it’s preferable that an arc fleet doesn’t arrive at its goal.
These new worlds may then develop their own sub species that may have it in for their original species. Every now and again, species will also broadcast signals to see whether there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe, and sometimes it’s not a good idea to be seen!
I’ve had a lot of fun playing The Fermi Paradox, although I realise not everyone will share my enthusiasm. Given that it’s currently unfinished and an independent game, I might be being a little biased awarding it a solid 7/10. Based on updates and how they affect the game, I’ll say that this is probably going to end up either being a 6 or an 8.
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