Planet Nomads – Preview
Follow Genre: Sci-fi Open-world survival sandbox
Developer: Craneballs
Publisher: Craneballs
Platform: PC
Tested on: PC

Planet Nomads – Preview

Good: Fresh look on the genre
Bad: Not much music
User Score
8.5
(4 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.5/10 (4 votes cast)

Planet nomads is your atypical Sci-fi exploration/survival open world game that is being developed and published by Craneballs. It reminds a lot of No Man’s Sky although it has better atmosphere and is more planet-focused instead of exploring the galaxy. You can already tell that, when this game is fully developed, it’ll be a blast of exploration-powered, survivaling fun. Woo wee, whilst bugs are still there, the game feels great.

Planet Nomads logo

With the story of Planet Nomads, so far nothing has been told yet, you crash on this alien planet but that’s it. I’m not saying this is a bad thing because this base of a story line gives the developers a ton of options, but admittedly it’s a cliché to open an alien survival, open-world RPG with. No Mans’s Sky did it, Subnautica did it and I’m willing to bet there are more of these opening scenes out there, perhaps Craneballs could switch this around? Maybe a snuff of personal story would make this game stand out more at this point in time, but it is understandable that other qualities of the game get more attention at this moment in the development.

The graphical side of Planet Nomads brings good atmosphere and bright colors and while there is still room for improvement, the base of what should represent this alien planet looks good. As far as the 3D-models for the base pieces go, those look awesome and give you the mankind feeling most of us so desperately desire in an alien environment. This goes hand in hand with the overall art style of the game which is beautiful. With plants that resemble Earth’s but don’t look too much like them, this game makes you feel at home in this strange yet familiar environment. Amongst the creatures of Planet Nomads, there is also a note of Earthiness as these creatures seem not too far off from reality but rather push the boundaries a bit. By doing so, the game is able to diversify from other games in the same genre while keeping its options open.

Planet nomads 1

Soundtrack-wise, there isn’t much there yet, aside from the title menu music, in-game is mostly dominated by sound effects coming from your buzzing generator or your jetpack when using it. There is a lot of room for improvement in this area as Planet Nomads would fare well with atmospherical tunes such as those found in Subnautica, or the game could focus on nature’s harmony and just make it revolve around birdsong and the wind blowing through the trees. Hah, can you imagine that? Beautiful.

Basic mechanics are already there, those are needed to play the game.  Base building is a no-brainer and if you need to survive, you will also need to procure food and drinks and this is where Planet Nomads is different. You almost constantly need to eat and drink to sustain yourself, which is realistic, but it gets to a point where it gets annoying how much provisions you need to find and make, at least in the beginning. Craneballs talks about wanting to make Planet Nomads as realistic as possible, but the current system isn’t rewarding enough for making basic food that would, realistically, sustain a human being.

Planet Nomads 4

At the moment your best means of travel in the early-game is your jetpack, which is just used to jump high but if you manage the battery correctly you can float just an inch above the ground at good speed so as to cover more land. Plus, jetpacks are just fun, this adds to the nomadic feeling you get because you will travel a lot. The game also features creatures that all behave differently, sometimes they still bug out and don’t react to the player, but that surely will get fixed. Along with these creatures come eggs, or dens or whatever the hell they are, when mined these ‘things’ give you materials you shouldn’t get from them, like iron for example, so that’s also a minor bug that is still present.

A key feature of the game that is still missing regards the options menu is that the player can not yet adjust their controls, which might lead to a lot on inconveniences. Graphical options are also only adjustable through the options in the title menu, it might be more convenient if they were adjustable through the in-game options menu. But this is likely to get added at a later stage in the game’s development. A great feature is the changing of world-wide biomes. Travel to the south and you will encounter warmer biomes while traveling to the north will make the environment colder, which is pretty cool! Another element that makes Planet Nomads stand out is the way vehicles are made, the player begins with setting up a crank and then adds parts, so you can basically shape your own vehicles.

Planet Nomads 2

Conclusion

Planet Nomads, at first glance, looks like your typical open-world survival in an alien environment, but it needs to be said that this game is still in Alpha so a lot of things might still change. Even though it is just another survival game, Planet Nomads feels fresh and is able to distinguish itself through its art style, biomes and Craneballs’ look on this genre. Overall, Planet Nomads still has a long road to go but what is already here, looks amazing and makes players look forward to improvement.

Planet Nomads 3

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Rating: 8.5/10 (4 votes cast)
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Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
Planet Nomads - Preview, 8.5 out of 10 based on 4 ratings

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