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Gorgeous new Steam sandbox building game “floored” by response to demo

The developer of sandbox castle building game Tiny Glade thanks players for the “heartwarming reception” to its new free demo on Steam.

Gorgeous sandbox building game Tiny Glade "floored" by demo reception - A towering castle built in the new creation tool.

If you’ve ever had one of those lazy Sunday afternoons where you just want to sit back with a long drink and doodle around, you’ll know you can’t beat the best sandbox games for a relaxing time. Along with the classics like Terraria and Minecraft, I’m a big fan of more pure creation tools such as Summerhouse that simply provide a canvas for your creativity. Tiny Glade is very much in that mold, offering a simply beautiful building game that puts powerful tools at your fingertips in a way that feels simply magical, and a free Steam demo lets you try it out right now at.

Sitting down with the Tiny Glade demo, I can’t help but laugh with delight at how quickly it all clicks into place. A relaxing building game about creating castles, it feels almost like magic, pieces slotting perfectly into place with a brush of your mouse. You can quickly flip between walls, towers, paths, flowers, and all the smaller trinkets and accouterments that turn bricks and mortar into a living, breathing world.

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The parts adjust and adapt as you add more items in – walls forming into tunnels if you draw a road through the middle of them, and towers stretching and elongating as you drag them into position. It has the putty-like feel of creating a character in The Sims 4, even going so far as to let you tweak the very earth itself.

Then, an edit tool allows you to quickly adjust the material and color of individual parts, while the eraser can be set to only target specific object types to allow you to quickly strip out any errors without damaging any of the other parts; in fact, they’ll just readapt to match the changes. Tiny Glade even respects the Ctrl+Z shortcut for an easy undo option.

It’s an incredibly satisfying tool – I was able to make the little diorama below in about a minute at most, and the potential to create a memorable monument even within the limited range offered by the demo version is quite something to behold, as the community creations players are already sharing shows.

Tiny Glade - A small tower and path built in a forest glade.

“We’d like to thank you all for such a heartwarming reception,” indie developer Pounce Light says of the response to its newly released demo. “We’re inspired, touched, grateful – all at once! And we’re absolutely floored by the beautiful dioramas you’ve been creating. Thank you for being such a wonderful community.

“Right now, our top priority is investigating startup crashes that prevent folks from getting into the game,” it continues. “It’s the first time we have released a build to a large number of people, so there are bound to be some issues. Thank you for reporting these to us and bug kudos to those who helped us debug them.”

The team also asks for additional feedback and suggestions for changes and new features. “Hearing your thoughts really helps us know what to prioritize (or de-prioritize) and what rough edges are the most prominent,” it says. “For example, we have plans to change the Time of Day UI, but it’s great to hear the same desire voiced by the players.”

Tiny Glade - Valheim dev Jonathan Smårs writes, "Trying out the fantastic Tiny Glade demo by Pounce Light,” he writes. “You need to try it out - this game is going to be huge."

Among the positive community responses is a post shared by Valheim senior developer Jonathan Smårs via X (Twitter): “Trying out the fantastic Tiny Glade demo by Pounce Light,” he writes. “You need to try it out – this game is going to be huge.” I certainly can’t wait to get my hands on the full suite of tools at launch based on my time with the demo.

The Tiny Glade demo, which is part of Steam’s ‘Cozy and Family Friendly Games Celebration,’ will remain active into Steam Next Fest, meaning it will be available until at least Monday June 17. The full game is set to arrive in the third quarter of 2024. Simply head here to download and check out the demo for yourself, or add the game to your wishlist to stay up to date with when the full thing arrives.

Alternatively, get your creative juices flowing with even more of the best sandbox games on PC. Or get nice and cozy and melt all your stresses and strains away by sinking into the best relaxing games around.

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