- Honey, I Shrunk the Kids meets Ark: Survival Evolved - released into Early Access a little over two years ago. And now with Version 1.0, we jumped into the wide open spaces of the game's backyard world to check out the full release.
Having checked out that version two years ago, and not coming back until the big Version 1.0 release, it’s astonishing how much Gnat Roast and Cooked Tadpole Meat there is on the bone. Grounded might take place in a single backyard, but it's a marvel of scale, scope, and what sitting with an idea and letting it grow can deliver. From an underwater world to discover under the surface of a pond to trying to survive the scorching desert heat of a sand pit overrun with bugs. It’s fantastical, cartoonish, and realistic in equal measure, with a sense of fun and even dread, expressed through impressive art direction and a moody synth-driven soundtrack.
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The backyard is peppered with small-but-now-large discoveries, including a functioning etch-a-sketch-like toy, discarded juice boxes, a rundown lawnmower, toolboxes with massive screwdrivers doubling as precarious platforms, a tabletop boardgame set up on a picnic table, and more. Each not only serves as a means to create biome diversity and recognisable landmarks but as a nice little reminder that in the world of Grounded a dew drop forming on a blade of grass is something you need to look up to see.