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Resist the deadly allure of gravity in citybuilder Airborne Kingdom on Steam

After a year on Epic

Every citybuilder is about keeping the districts of your city in balance, but Airborne Kingdom makes it rather more literal. As your flying metropolis expands, you have to apply propulsion machines - fabric wings, gigantic oars, pedal-powered rotors - to make sure it doesn't tip dangerously this way or that.

It's delightful, and after a year on Epic's game store, the Epic Games Store, it's available on Steam.

Here's the launch trailer from last year:

Watch on YouTube

You're still building out your city while trying to keep your peeps happy, but being skybound influences every part of the process. The resources available to you at any given moment are influenced by what's within range on the ground, for example.

Nate had a grand time with the game when it launched last year, specifically calling out its arabesque aesthetic:

In this city builder, which tasks you with the ongoing construction and navigation of a big flying city in a fantasy world, the aesthetic palette is unmistakable. From the arches and minarets of your sprawling waftopolis, to the scales the soundtrack breezes through, to the dream-like, abstract patterns which cover the opening region in place of an ocean, it's the golden age of medieval Islam writ large. And like all good works of whatever-you-want-to-call-steampunk, it's not just set dressing. Just as Iron Harvest used all of its clanking chuggery as a way to explore the psychic disaster of archaic monarchies discovering mechanisation, so Airborne Kingdom uses its floaty-town premise to explore the role of Islamic cultures in what we think of as the Renaissance.

Airborne Kingdom is available from Steam now for £15.59/€16.79/$20, with a 20% launch discount

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Graham Smith

Deputy Editorial Director

Rock Paper Shotgun's former editor-in-chief and current corporate dad. Also, he continues to write evening news posts for some reason.