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New dwarf RPG and colony builder launches big playtest, available now

If you’ve burned through Dwarf Fortress and want an alternative to RimWorld, a new RPG and colony game has a big playtest, available now.

First Dwarf Steam RPG game new playtest: A hero with goggles from Steam RPG game First Dwarf

Dwarf Fortress is one of the deepest and most intricate simulations of a virtual world in gaming history. It feels boundless, not just in the sheer size of its geography, but in the organic rise and falls of its simulated civilizations and eclectic NPCs. RimWorld meanwhile remains the definitive colony simulator. Explore, fight, dig, and build to convert far-off planets into something that feels like home. Drawing inspiration from both these games, a new RPG, colony, and survival game is coming soon to Steam, and there’s a giant playtest you can try right now.

Welcome to First Dwarf, by the wonderfully named Star Drifters. Primarily an RPG game, it casts you as the titular dwarf as you explore, excavate, and attempt to colonize and rebuild a beautiful planet that’s been torn to shreds by war. Initially, you need to locate old ruins, fertile plains, and resource-rich caves and crags to establish bases and production. Once you’ve found your spots, there are enemies and bosses that you have to clear out, and then it’s time to get digging, chopping, and blueprinting as you set the foundations for your would-be new world and gradually construct buildings and upgrades.

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It’s a seamless combination of genres. Accompanied by a wise old dragon called Ragna, as you explore First Dwarf’s overworld, it has the vibrancy and tranquility of a classic fantasy game. Combat however is weighty and gratifying – all your fighting and mining is done using a powerful, dwarven mech suit, and you can swap between gigantic stone-breaking hammers or wood-felling axes supercharged by lightning energy.

You can fight hand to hand, or, like any good colony game, build turrets, towers, and other automated defenses to bring waves of enemies quickly to their knees. Intuitive, tactile, and varied, First Dwarf blends crafting and survival with RPG intrigue. And now, you can try it for yourself.

The new First Dwarf playtest runs until Monday May 6. Everyone and anyone can participate. Even better, this is the first test for First Dwarf’s co-op mode, so you can play with a friend either online or through local split-screen – one person controls Tru, the eponymous First Dwarf, while the other plays as Ragna, and the two characters have separate abilities and skills that work in tandem. If you want to try it out, just head right here.

Alternatively, try the other best survival games, or maybe the best building games available on PC right now.

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