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Black Skylands has set sail in early access with open world sky pirating

Stake a claim in the floating islands

When I think airships and sky pirates, it always brings to mind giant magical blimps fighting one another. Black Skylands has those, but the sky's no safer than the sea it looks, because there are all sorts of flying monsters too. You'll be staking a claim in the Skylands by building up your Fathership and claiming territory for your faction with alliances and combat both. This open world skyship combat adventure is setting sail for early access today.

"Build your skyship and explore the open world, fight factions of pirates and monsters, claim your territory by foot or by your flying vessel," Hungry Couch Games explain. "You're the captain and the sky is the limit."

You can catch a good bit of all that combat, in the sky and on land, here in Black Skylands' launch trailer.

You're also able to choose and customise different styles of ship for flying out and about in, whether it's a light and quick skyship or a hefty one with tons of cargo space. You'll use that to stake your claim on new territories for your home and bring resources back to your mega big flying Fathership fortress to expand and improve it. I, the Stardew liker, of course have an eye on the fact that you can build ranches and gardens on your Fathership as part of the operation.

Hungry Couch Games acknowledge that they're blending quite a few genres: a top down shooter and some management bits, and some RPG qualities as well, they say. That's a large part of their interest in taking a tour through early access, it sounds.

"We are trying to blend together different gameplay mechanics, which means a lot of iterations and experimentation," they say. "Our desire is to do this with an involved and dedicated player base that we are able to get consistent feedback from."

Hungry Couch say that Black Skylands currently has about half the content they want in the final game. Its store page isn't terribly specific on what kinds of new content are planned, but if I were to guess I'd say it may involve more types of ships, weapons, and Fathership upgrades and such. Hungry Couch plan to remain in early access for "up to 12 months" they say.

Black Skylands has launched in early access over on Steam where it's currently discounted 10% to £13.94/€15.11/$17.99 until July 16.

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