Metascore
84

Generally favorable reviews - based on 46 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 46
  2. Negative: 0 out of 46
  1. 100
    It's a beautiful mix of everything we love in retro gaming and everything we're capable of having with modern technology, truly a match made in virtual heaven!
  2. 100
    The visuals are simple yet strikingly effective. The core gameplay is manageable, yet effectively complex. A game like this isn’t produced by huge teams with tons of money. Those kinds of games (god bless ‘em) are pure craft. Darwinia is art.
  3. They nailed the user interface and playability. It's addicting. They made it for PC, MAC and Linux. And they are Independent Developers. Sounds like a solid “A” to me.
  4. 95
    Darwinia is a game unlike any other, with a mixture of gameplay elements that have been thrust together forming one glorious gameplay experience that has to be played to be believed.
  5. In plain English, don’t ask, "What’s it like?"- Just buy it, play it, and spread the word to anyone you know who’s a gamer about it by any legal means necessary.
  6. 95
    Darwinia is the most refreshing, beautiful, frustrating, compelling and dare I say it original game I've had the pleasure of playing in many a year.
  7. It's graphics are unconventional and don't play the max polycount/photorealism game, but they're truly beautiful.
  8. Darwinia is revolutionary and groundbreaking.
  9. Play this game long enough, and you'll believe there are souls in your computer, living simple, stark, beautiful lives.
  10. A campaign of just a handful of missions doesn’t last long, but an active mod community helps offset that. Nonetheless, Darwinia stands above most games in design as an essential title for the PC.
  11. Forget games with real-time physics. This is one has real-time metaphysics. It's this year's underground classic, this year's "Rez," this year's "Ico," this year's... well, this year's Darwinia. It's a game that justifies your sense of your brilliance and gaming' sense of brilliance.
  12. The way the game adds small increments – a new move or weapon or task has been brilliantly devised and all the time you are playing you get help and feedback from a chap that looks not unlike Mr Clive Sinclair – you have to have been around in the 8 bit days to appreciate this.
  13. One of the most unique games that I have played in a while. If you are looking for a unique game that isn’t just a “cookie cutter” of the most popular game out there, then look no further than this game.
  14. A gorgeous, character-packed curio that combines strategy and arcade action with great aplomb. An essential purchase for nostalgics. [PC Gamer UK]
  15. 90
    Darwinia isn't just a good game. More importantly, it's a place you've never been.
  16. My props go out to Introversion for developing such an amazingly original and incredible game. Just goes to show, you don’t need a few million dollars for a budget to create a classic hit.
  17. The lack of "Game Over" is a delightful incentive for continued play, and despite no fear of defeat, Darwinia still contains a considerable array of challenges to overcome.
  18. A new classic. It will change every gaming instinct you have. [March 2005, p.110]
  19. Darwinia will remind you that videogames can be an art form as well as great entertainment.
  20. Darwinia deserves to be remembered as one of 2005's most creative games on any platform.
  21. If anything, it reminds us that ridiculous production values and high-powered rigs aren't always necessary to make a game that's just plain fun.
  22. 88
    Darwinia is great gaming. It makes me smile. My eyes rejoice at the sight of it.
  23. After learning to take Darwinia in bite-sized pieces – say 45 to 60 minutes a time – it didn’t take long for me to begin to anticipate playing it.
  24. Darwinia is, all told, wonderful. It's the kind of game that would show impressionable young kids the breadth and scope of the medium without overwhelming them with mechanics.
  25. So stylish it looks like art, but surprisingly it is also a very good game. [Apr. 05]
  26. It's a brilliant and addictive experience that's unlike anything you've played before.
  27. Darwinia really has to be seen and heard in motion...to fully appreciate how effective the presentation is. [Jan 2006, p.56]
  28. The graphics in Darwinia while a throwback to times past, are superb.
  29. Guaranteed fun for strategy fans of all ages, but especially retro gamers. [July 2005, p.68]
  30. 80
    Despite the fact some may find the concept of mouse gestures a little irritating at first, and the path-finding somewhat of a pain, those that persevere will be rewarded with some solid interactive entertainment.
  31. It’s a game that has ideas and refuses to be diluted by mediocrity. These days that’s a rare and brave thing to do.
  32. While the incredibly stylish graphics will be the initial draw, you’ll stick around for one of the greatest examples of pure gameplay this side of the aforementioned "Katamari Damacy."
  33. It's obvious that developers Introversion don't have a huge budget but they managed to create a minimalist masterpiece that any gamer with an imagination can appreciate.
  34. Darwinia’s action can get repetitive, though no less addictive, and its AI issues can drag it down, but on the whole this is a refreshing game created with a pure love of gaming. Its unique interface and gameplay design set is apart from anything out there. The game’s appeal will no doubt be greatest with retro fans but its reach stretches to every gamer.
  35. If you can get past the lack-luster graphics and the moderately annoying controls then you will be able to really enjoy this title. Do to the somewhat awkward controls I can not say that this game is a “must have”, but I would have to say that if you are looking for a game that is not too heavy or serious then you might want to take a look at this one.
  36. 76
    If you are jaded from too many of the same old RTS games or even if you just want to play an innovative game for a change, then Darwinia is definitely one you should look into and with a demo readily available, there really isn’t a good reason to not give it a try.
  37. This may not be a revolution in gaming, but as a fresh premise and interesting gameplay for $30, even with some flaws packed in, isn't a bad deal in my book. [July 2006, p.109]
  38. 75
    It has a completely unique style, both in the audio, sound and gameplay departments that cannot be easily compared to anything else.
  39. Where most games are built out of wood, bullets and money, Darwinia has an unapologetically spiritual vision, its geeky god presiding over a world which dares to make an imagined religion into a ruleset. That in some places it falls short of its ambitions is not what makes this game important. [March 2005, p.82]
  40. The action-RTS tomfoolery is remarkably compelling once you get a feeling for the basics... Darwinia is proof that you don’t need huge budgets and flashy visuals to make a decent title. [Apr 2005, p.112]
  41. Sadly, the bugs I encountered during the game (especially with the way the graphics engine started chugging so severely in the later levels) really hurt my experience, and the action just eventually ended up being reduced to using the same strategy over and over again.
  42. Darwinia is immersive, with a quality mix between unique game play and off-the-wall graphics. This title isn’t particularly successful, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see some of the elements that Introversion has brought to the table appear in future RTS titles.
  43. Darwinia is certainly “unique” and “original”. It’s a shame it’s not very “fun”.
  44. Darwinia 's weird, but it might well not be your kind of weird.
  45. We’re left with a fairly annoying RTS title full of niggling and frustrating bugs, poor design decisions, and pathfinding that has dripped directly from the nose of Satan himself.
  46. I just about guarantee you’ve not experienced a game like this before, and while it stumbles in its gameplay, it soars in its style and whimsy.
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 118 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 39 out of 44
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 44
  3. Negative: 5 out of 44
  1. Oct 27, 2013
    10
    Cannon Fodder mixed with Tron. Fantastic atmosphere and brilliantly stylized visuals. Recommended for everyone who likes a good blast and an interest in the cyber. Full Review »
  2. Apr 15, 2012
    7
    Sweet Indie game, very original and inspiring. On the other hand, you will not want to play it for the second time and don't expect it will take you very long to finish it. For me it ended at 12 hours. Full Review »
  3. Apr 1, 2012
    3
    There is almost no instruction on how to play the game, you have to do that from google. The pathfinding is just about the worst i have ever seen in a game. The graphics are boring, the enemies are seemingly endless and infuriating on the later levels...the levels, which all seem to blend together in repetition, are boring and offer nothing new. The combat is bland and boring. ANother problem i had with it is that they made the same button to select a unit as the button to move a unit... Strategy 101 mistake. Never buying an Introversion game again. Terrible, just terrible game. Full Review »