Eco [Global survival game]


So imagine Minecraft, but with a complex ecological simulation and a 30 day countdown to the end of the world. Also lots of charts, graphs, economics and laws.

Eco is an online game where players must collaborate to build a civilization in a world where everything they do affects the environment. All resources come from a simulated ecosystem, with thousands of plants and animals simulating 24/7. Work together through the player-run government and economy to build the technology to stop a meteor on a collision course with the planet, without polluting the world and killing it off in the process before that even happens.

Some friends and I have a dedicated server going and we’re only about 3 days in. Last night I was up until about 7am arguing with other citizens about whether we should have a capitalist or communist society in our settlement. I’m spending time poring over charts and graphs showing how our industrial waste is polluting the ground water, or how big of a radius the air pollution being put out by our new blast furnace reaches. Considering proposing a new law banning elk hunting because we’ve already reduced their global numbers by half in just the short time our village has existed. Nurturing the forest around my house back to life because we clear cut the entire things to build the initial settlement.

There are so many mechanics / interactions with other players that I’m having with this game that I’ve never even considered doing in a video game before. It’s really super awesome.

Oh yeah, wanna check out some of that data I was talking about on your own? Here’s the link to the website for our server:

If anyone wants in, let me know :) Discord and a working mic is very helpful too!


Meteor impact? Is this a ticking time bomb for the game?


Yes. Watch the trailer and it explains.


I’ll check it out. I looked at this one and Ylands a long time ago, like articles. I didn’t realize they released some more. Thank you for the summary/update.


I’ve been meaning to post about this for a while now because I’ve been following it since before the Kickstarter went live and it sounds unprecedented. The developers, Strange Loop Games, who also made Vessel, are a very forward-thinking bunch and a lot of their other titles revolve around learning things through systems and actual play, rather than dressing crap mechanics with information. Eco could be really special in this regard and it’s come so far in the last couple of years!

I’m glad you made the post though Eric because I have no experience playing it and you’ve described it a lot more succinctly than I would have – and with a good example of what sorts of quandaries the game throws at you and other players! Super interesting stuff and definitely something I’ll consider joining you in because I don’t think my friends would be interested!


Geggis, you or anyone else who is interested in playing with us should get on this Discord:

Server info is stickied in the #eco channel :)


My house, and the windmill that powers my sawmill:

View out over our beet field with some of the workshop area in the background:

Our blast furnace, the most advanced piece of tech in the village so far!

New workshop we completed earlier tonight, made out of bricks, so high tech!

The entrance to our mine:

Our early smelting created lots of toxic byproducts that had to be dealt with. We dug out a room deep underground and stored the waste in there to prevent it from contaminating the environment on the surface:


Shouldn’t you be in space mining ore instead?

Also - The one thing putting me off from this game, is the time limit. Is there any way to avoid that, delay it, or is it fine with the limit?


The data part of this really intrigues me. Here’s a heatmap showing the creation of logging debris over time. You can see where players have been cutting down the forest.


You can disable the meteor, but I feel like that would be removing a huge part of the game. You can also set whatever number of days you want, but I feel like 30 days may be too much already. But this is my first game so I don’t know!


Thanks @Eric_Majkut - Its hard to wait until it leaves early access, but thats what I promised myself when I realized I had over 30 Early access games in my steam library!


I bought this, managed 90 mins and got a refund, really found it a struggle, the whole work table thing was a drag. It was really slow going as well.

Maybe when it comes out of a early release I may revisit but it really didn’t work.


Perhaps you had a bad experience because you tried to quickly play solo in a game that’s meant to take place over the course of 30 days and involving other players?


I’m liking what I am reading on this game but how many players, at min, do you think this would work with? It seems like you need a community really not a handful of friends.


This is exactly my thinking.


There’s a “collaboration” setting. Depending on how you set it, it’s more or less expensive to branch out into multiple skill trees. We’ve got it set to low on our server, so there’s some restriction but you can generally do a couple of different things without too much trouble. If you have 1-3 people, you’d want everyone to be able to do lots of stuff. If you have 50-100 people, it makes more sense to specialize. So, in that way, you can sorta tailor how hard it is to go it alone.

We’ve got 17 people on our server. It’s been going well. Everyone does their thing, and then buys/sells/barters with others to get what they need by selling what they make. It’s cool :)


This sounds super cool. But I don’t understand the reasoning behind monetary stuff or bartering. Seems like you’d create a pool of goods for the jobs people need?


I think maybe you have to play to understand why that stuff is in there. The need for it is naturally arising. Situations come up where one person feels like they’re not getting a fair deal for the work they’re putting in, or people feel supplies aren’t being fairly distributed, etc, and then the desire for a more formalized system comes along. It sucks when you spend an hour getting a huge stack of wood together, log off, then it’s just gone the next day when you log back on with no compensation or gain for it. But if you have a store that sells wood, the person that needs it now has an always available source of wood (not just when you’re online) and they’re forced to fairly compensate you for the goods they’re hauling away.


@Eric_Majkut in the server how long do you think people play per day on average? Is attendance very irregular or do you need to be online fairly regularly at organised times? I am just curious.


Some people play a lot, some people don’t. Whether or not people need to be online depends on what you need, what their skills are, what your skills are, whether or not you’re using the economic systems to make goods available when people are offline or not, etc. You don’t have to play 8 hours a day to have fun.