Top Critic Average
This is an art toy to savour, and a time-waster of great power.
A pleasant toy for building your own idyllic seaside getaways.
Townscaper is a nice little surprise. Based on simple, intuitive and effective gameplay, this game closer to the digital toy allows you to escape and relax for a few minutes that can quickly turn into hours.
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Townscaper exists in that special chill vibe genre that includes games like digital coloring books and virtual bubble wrap, but it also nudges gently up against city builders as well, only without any of the complications or stress. It makes you feel like a creative, relaxed time traveler, bringing into existence a peaceful, little perfect town out in the middle of a perfectly calm sea. Townscaper doesn’t try to do a lot of things, instead it does one thing very, very well.
Oskar Stålberg has made a charming and compelling toy for imaginative play. Anyone willing to project themselves into its worlds and tell stories to themselves as they build will have a great time (although young kids might need assistance with the controls). Raw Fury claim to care about “experiences and emotions” not “genres or mechanics”. If that’s where your priorities lie, too, then give Townscaper a shot.
Townscaper is less of a game, more of a tool to simply play around with. It has no goal either, but that is part of its almost hypnotic charm at being an enjoyable experience that allows us to simply play around as we see fit.
Townscaper is the perfect game if you’re looking for a way to relax and unwind while flexing your creative muscles. The mechanics may be limited, but the game itself is absolutely limitless. Townscaper is like a nice warm batch of cookies from grandma, and I can already tell I will be returning quite often to the comforts I found while playing.
Townscaper is minimalist in every sense of the word — minimalist gameplay, minimalist UI, minimalist sound — but the sheer amount of potential hidden within this title defies its style. If you’re looking for a new obsession or a nice little title to play during lunch breaks or just before bed, Townscaper is the soothing sandbox town-builder that will do the trick. The town-building aspect may be instantaneous, but you’ll soon learn you spend an awful lot of time discovering all the little signs of life that spring up along the way.