Equilinox is a Life Simulation Game created by indie developer ThinMatrix in which you can create and nurture your own ecosystems, shape the world to your liking, cultivate and raise hundreds of different species, and evolve your wildlife to unlock more exotic plants and animals. It was released on November 23rd, 2018 for PC.
You create ecosystems by placing plants and animals into your world. Different plants will make the terrain more fertile allowing wildlife to flourish, while animals will begin to earn you points which can be used to purchase various in-game resources.Every plant and animal has its own life-cycle, behaviors and requirements, so you need to ensure that each species is satisfied with its environment, has enough resources, and that the ecosystems are balanced. Healthy, happy animals will live longer, breed more, and earn you more points.
The points you earn can also be used to genetically modify your species, allowing you to manipulate the traits and behaviors of your species for various benefits. You can also evolve your current wildlife to unlock more exotic plants, trees and creatures.
Tropes present in this game:
- Acceptable Breaks from Reality:
- Real-life evolution would take several years to decades to occur, but over here it only takes a few days at most. Justified as the game would be tediously boring otherwise.
- Several animals and plants have a far shorter lifespan than what they would have in real life. Again, this is to prevent the game from being a drag.
- Amazing Technicolor Wildlife: Several wildlife can be genetically selected to have strange colours not seen in most wildlife. Taken Up to Eleven if a rare mutation occurs that makes an animal a radically different color, such as light blue chickens or purple squirrels.
- Animal Jingoism: Happens between predator and prey species, with the predator attacking the prey who desperately attempt to run from it.
- Artistic License Biology: Oh, where to start...
- Frogs evolve from Lizards, with the lizard being in an area that is at least 90% Jungle. In reality, lizards evolved from amphibians (which frogs are). The frog's flavor text even points out that it's not a reptile, even though it's considered a reptile by the game!
- Land animals such as Sheep and Guinea Pigs show no sign of drowning even if they are underwater. Water animals such as fish can even "swim" across and survive in dry land as well! Downplayed in that in both cases will die rather quickly, but due to health deterioration from not being in a suitable biome, not because they can't breathe.
- How most organisms react to trees:
- Sheep need trees near their habitat for maximum environmental satisfaction. Real Life sheep couldn't care less about trees, and mostly live in wide open flat grasslands.
- On the other hand, chickens in-game dislike trees, incurring a severe satisfaction penalty that can gravely harm their health if even one tree is close enough to them. Real Life chickens actually prefer trees for shade and shelter.
- Real life evolution should take far more than a few days to occur. This one however is one of the Acceptable Breaks from Reality, since the game would be very tedious otherwise.
- Several "Strange Mutations" can cause flora and fauna to exhibit colors they would never be seen with in real life.
- Double Unlock: Clicking on a locked species will show you what tasks are needed in order to unlock them. However, evolving certain species requires different tasks. For example, to unlock Swamp Flowers, you must first complete all tasks leading to and including "Oh Deer" to unlock Swamp Grass. After unlocking Swamp Grass, you can evolve Bulrush plants, but to evolve Swamp Flowers, you need to complete all tasks leading to and including "Totally Coconuts!" to unlock Lizards, which can be evolved into Frogs, so you can evolve Toads, which are required near the Bulrush to evolve Swamp Flowers. You'll also need to complete all tasks leading to and including "The Mighty Jungle" so that you'll b able to get the Frogs to be environmentally satisfied enough to even perform the process of evolving them into toads!
- Fantastic Flora: There are a number of plants in the game that do not have a real-life counterpart, such as Healblooms and Witchwood. Some of them like the aforementioned Healbloom and Witchwood also have special fruits/seeds that can heal diseased animals.
- Global Currency: "Diversity Points", or DP, are an abstract currency used to buy new organisms, evolve them, or modify their descendants. You earn DP over time from animals, with healthier and happier animals producing more DP.
- Goal-Oriented Evolution: There are multiple in-game tasks that can be completed to gain rewards such as extra diversity points or new content. Some tasks can be repeated, making it possible to farm certain plants and animals to receive a regular income of diversity points.
- LEGO Genetics: Firstly, you need your current organism to have a certain set of requirements (size, color, organisms nearby). Once you fulfill the criteria then you can "evolve" a completely different lifeform after a period of time, as long as the requirements are met.
- Tech Tree: You can "evolve" your current wildlife to unlock more exotic plants, trees and creatures. Each evolution takes time to perform, and they each have a set of requirements that must be met throughout the entire process for the evolution to complete.