What you need when strip mining the landscape and turning it into a network of roads and railways and factory towns as far as the eye can see is for it to be set against a very beautiful backdrop showing exactly what kind of lovely nature you’re chewing through. At least, I assume that’s the thesis behind Voxel Tycoon, because I see all those tiny trees and cacti and the shining turquoise water and do feel as though it would be perversely satisfying to make a wonderfully efficient road grid over the top of it all. Take a look at the trailer, you'll see what I mean.
I think it helps that all the houses and water towers and traffic lights are very cute in their own right, so it doesn’t feel like you’re just destroying everything to build up great, soul-crushing industrial hell over the top of them. Even though you probably are.
Voxel Tycoon will be hitting Steam Early Access soon, but it has an even earlier access going on via itch.io right now. “Don't get us wrong, however; the game is largely stable and playable, it just requires a few content updates,” say the developers. “Providing you access to the game at the current stage gives us several development opportunities, like large-scale public testing, gathering community feedback, and improving gameplay further, before moving onto our full Early Access release.”
So far there is a whole bunch of train complexity to play around with, with locomotives from all kinds of historical eras that’ll act differently thanks to their weight and so on. As well as micromanaging these supply chains, you’ll be able to mine for resources, create a bunch of different buildings to take advantage of said resources, and build up thriving cities. Like I said, perversely satisfying industrial hellscape.
As well as new features and optimisation, the game’s Steam Early Access will add things like multiplayer and tutorials, but if you buy it on itch.io now for $20, you’ll also get a Steam key once it releases onto the latter store.