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Tinkerlands: A Shipwrecked Adventure is a free demo of 2D crafting and spider fights


A giant frog does battle in Tinkerlands demo.
Image credit: HypeTrain Digital

I spend a portion of my every week surviving and crafting. And in the game, where the game is called Minecraft. I still have appetite left for Tinkerlands: A Shipwrecked Adventure, a demo that offers topdown, 2D construction and fights with giant frog bosses, among others.

The free prologue is available to download from Steam. "Free prologue" is often just a fancy way of saying "demo" these days, but it does seem to extend here to a unique story about "the very first survivors who set foot on" the islands the main game takes place upon.

Whatever you call it, it reportedly contains "hours" of game, and you build a home, craft, and fight a laser-spewing spider with either melee combat or magical abilities. It's only playable in singleplayer, though.

There's nothing on the Steam page that suggests Tinkerlands is doing anything original, mind. The reviews on A Shipwrecked Adventure reflect that, too, either deciding it doesn't matter and declaring it fun, or criticising it for its similarity to the likes of Necesse, which is also on Steam.

Personally, I'm not sure I care about originality in the survival-crafting genre. Part of playing Minecraft is starting the game over and over again in a fresh world, and repeating the same steps and processes each time as you punch trees, mine rocks, farm watermelons. Sometimes it's nice to follow a similar or identical routine in a game with different art, is all.

The full Tinkerlands, which has its own Steam page, natch, is due to launch in Early Access sometime in early 2025. That'll include online co-op, alongside map making and ship navigation systems not present in the prologue.

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