Surviving Mars, a game where you can build a colony on the red planet and try to deal with mysterious events, has released a new update according to a news post on the game’s Steam Community page.

In Surviving Mars, players are tasked with establishing a colony somewhere on one of our closest stellar neighbors. Players initially land a cargo rocket with some drones and resources to kick things off and they’ll eventually have to deal with keeping hundreds (or thousands!) of humans alive in a harsh environment. A number of new features and balance changes have been made to the game, many of which have improved the game noticeably since our review at launch.

The big-ticket addition to the game is Creative Mode, a new way to play that adds in some new optional game rules. Players can have absurdly large amounts of funding, nigh-infinite resources, no disasters, or several other modifications that make it much easier to just build a colony without worrying about giant alien spheres freezing everyone to death. If you’ve enjoyed building for the sake of building and don’t want to worry too much about micromanagement, then Creative Mode is definitely a feature you’ll enjoy. Bear in mind that some of these special Creative Mode rules added in the Da Vinci Update will disable achievements!

Managing resources is a bit easier thanks to an overhaul pushed into the game. Players can now set a minimum desired amount of resources on a per-depot basis, allowing you to ensure that you’ll have adequate stockpiles in specific sections of your colony. The UI for depots has also been reworked to make it a bit easier to understand. Another quality-of-life change is that power producers & consumers will now automatically connect to adjacent buildings rather than requiring you to build a single tile power cable.

A number of balance adjustments have been made, some of which may fundamentally alter the way you play the game. Some buildings have had their power consumption increased or maintenance parts changed; for example, the Electronics Factory now uses Machine Parts for maintenance. Genius colonists will now grant research if their Sanity is high and Celebrity colonists will provide funding if their Comfort is high.

Another interesting change is the “Tourist” trait for applicants – colonists with this trait will generate $10 million upon arrival, stay for five days, and leave. Upon returning home, the Tourist will generate two new Tourist applicants. This creates the new opportunity for you to make a colony that will essentially act as an interstellar vacation destination and provide an additional income stream for players who want to go down this route.

The Da Vinci Update is now live on PC and will be coming to consoles shortly; please do check out the patch notes for all of the fine details in this update. A press release from the publisher notes that the Sagan Update will be coming in September, bringing with it over 30 new challenges for players to try their hand at. If you don’t yet already own Surviving Mars, you can grab it on Steam or on the Humble Store for PC, Mac, and Linux at the price of $39.99 or your regional equivalent. You can also pick it up on the Microsoft Store for Xbox One or on the PlayStation Store for the PlayStation 4.

Disclosure: Humble Bundle works with TechRaptor for affiliate partnership, and TechRaptor earns a small commission off purchases made from some links in this article.

What do you think of the changes made to Surviving Mars in the Da Vinci Update? Are you interested in Creative Mode or is the game less fun without the challenge of disasters and mysteries? Let us know in the comments below!

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Robert N. Adams

Senior Writer

I've had a controller in my hand since I was 4 and I haven't stopped gaming since. CCGs, Tabletop Games, Pen & Paper RPGs - I've tried a whole bunch of stuff over the years and I'm always looking to try more!



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