Review – Floodland

Floodland is a game that pulls no punches right from the get-go. This odd mixture between a city-builder, a This War of Mine-esque survival simulator, and a strategy game starts off with a Planet Earth ravaged by a flood of biblical proportions, that all but destroyed modern civilization as we know it. People have died, families have been torn apart, clans have been created to salvage what little is left from humanity. Yet, there is hope. The impactful opening cutscene mentions that, despite all hardships, this is an opportunity to “reboot” humanity. Not all is lost. We can still thrive despite these issues.

Floodland Gameplay

Floodland is a slooooooooooooow burn of a game.

It’s safe to say that I was sold from that cutscene alone. I was ready to rebuild civilization by all means necessary. Floodland did somewhat hype me before I even knew what its gameplay was really about. Then the game started and… it was fine. I was somewhat overwhelmed by, ironically enough, too many tutorials and not enough tutorials to explain me what was going on. I had to do tons of stuff at once, yet I had no resources to do these mandatory tasks in a timely manner. Meanwhile, the clock was still ticking. Resources were being depleted. I was going to kill the remnants of mankind in a manner of minutes.

Right from the start, you need to scout your surroundings, find food, find water, find rubbish (essentially the game’s main building material), wood, and more people to populate your camp. The resources are self-explanatory, but you also need to take into account that workers only work for a set amount of hours a day, making every single task, be it exploring a ruined building or researching a new kind of teach, much slower to complete than expected.

Floodland Story

Though it starts off with a banger of an intro cutscene. It does hit the feels.

The main hindrance to your town’s growth isn’t resources, but enough people to work on extracting and building structures with them. You can only find more people if you scout nearby areas, but can only scout further away if you acquire enough resources to improve your logistics. The beginning of the game became an exercise in patience, as the resources were somewhat easy to find, but everything else would take ages to complete. I just didn’t have enough manpower to improve my town, and doing so was easier said than done.

What kept me going was the prospect of an interesting outcome and the possibility of some “actions and consequences” conflicts further down the line, like those found in The Walking Dead. Also, the excellent music which was hyping me up from beginning to end. The moment I was able to create a somewhat sustainable logistics chain, letting me focus more on expanding my civilization rather than just complete favors and mandatory tasks, Floodland became a lot more interesting. Sure, it eventually reaches the point in every simulator, where things become way too overwhelming for you to deal with, not to mention the framerate issues when the map was filled with crap onscreen, but that’s when I was having more fun with it.

Floodland Base Camp

I’m not sure this is the post-apocalypse or just Lollapalooza.

I laud Floodland for being a shockingly niche game, aiming to please a very minute and specific subsection of gamers into survival, city builders, and strategy simulators all at once. It is flawed, being way too slow before it becomes really interesting, not to mention some performance issues, but it does indeed succeed at what it was developed for. It’s just a really hard sell for anyone besides this very specific niche of gamers, and not enough of a “city-builder” for those who are into the genre in particular.


Graphics: 7.0

There are some beautiful lighting effects which clash with the otherwise “decent at best” graphics. Some performance issues here and there, as well.

Gameplay: 7.0

A mixture between a city-builder (even though it barely feels like one), a strategy game, and a survival game. Overwhelming and slow at first, but with a decent tutorial to teach you the details.

Sound: 8.5

Like a ton of survival games, for some odd reason, Floodland features a soundtrack comprised of slide guitars and country twangs. It’s actually pretty good, and the voice acting isn’t bad either.

Fun Factor: 7.0

Floodland is a city builder which feels a bit too slow and initially punishing before you reach that point in which your infrastructure is sustainable enough to let you focus on growth first, issues second.

Final Verdict: 7.0

Floodland is available now on PC.

Reviewed on Intel i7-12700H, 16GB RAM, RTX 3060 6GB.

A copy of Floodland was provided by the publisher.