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RimWorld’s Biotech expansion introduces families and genetic engineering

Can’t imagine this’ll make it any less controversial

Sci-fi colony simulator RimWorld is capable of generating some scenarios that could make The Sims 4 blush, and the newly announced Biotech expansion isn’t likely to change that. Y’see, Biotech introduces pregnancy, child-rearing, and families. It isn’t stopping there, because there’s also genetic engineering now. Your character will be able to psychically command semi-living machines too thanks to a special implant, making them your thralls. That’s one word for it, anyway.

Cover image for YouTube videoTop 12 Best Survival Games to Play on PC
RimWorld is one of the best survival games on PC, we reckon.

RimWorld’s new families system sounds much like real life. You can choose to look after kids well, educate them, then send them off to be happy and productive members of society. Or you can treat them like a resource, setting up growth vats to churn out cheap and disposable labourers. Gene modifying means you can take those little scamps, or adults, and do everything from changing eye colour to making them immortal fire-breathing yeti people. If you don’t fancy any of that then you can become a mechanitor, commanding legions of emotionless robo-slugs to do your every bidding.

Biotech will be RimWorld’s largest expansion so far, and was nearly split into two parts. Along with the new expansion, the devs are also releasing a free 1.4 update that brings a load of changes, from the new lung rot disease to “actually useful shelves”. The update's just on the game’s unstable branch for now, so modders have time to adjust their wares. You can read the full details of the Biotech expansion and 1.4 update here.

We rate RimWorld among the best survival games and top management games you can play on PC. Biotech is the game’s third expansion, following on from 2020’s Royalty, which added empires and psychic powers, and last year’s Ideology, focused on belief systems. That one also added slavery. Australia’s Classification Board effectively banned RimWorld on PC in March this year for offending “against the standards of morality, decency and propriety”. Can I say strewth?

RimWorld is on Steam, GOG and the Epic Games Store for £28/$35/€30. The Biotech expansion releases this month.

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About the Author
CJ Wheeler avatar

CJ Wheeler

Former News Reporter

CJ used to write about steam locomotives but now covers Steam instead. Likes visual novels, most things with dungeons and/or crawling, and any shooter with a suitably chunky shotgun. He’s from Yorkshire, which means he’s legally obliged to enjoy a cup of tea and a nice sit down.