The Sapling is a short simulation game where you design your own plants and animals, and put them in a world together. Or you turn on random mutations, and see what evolution does to your ecosystem!
Recent Reviews:
Very Positive (36) - 86% of the 36 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
All Reviews:
Very Positive (1,004) - 90% of the 1,004 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Dec 12, 2019

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“While there is already a lot of content to enjoy, the list of ideas that can still be added is endless. I feel that letting the community join the brainstorm about what would be fruitful ideas to explore further is the most efficient way to make the game better quickly.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“Until I cannot think of any more major things to add. As I write this, two major updates have been released, and I have plans for several more.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“The full version will include several major updates that make the simulation even deeper and more interesting, and of course a lot of more polish and fewer (preferably no) glitches.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“A fully playable game, but glitchy and laggy at times.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“I plan to gradually raise the price as I ship new content and features, listening closely to community feedback.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“I communicate with the players every day via the Steam forums, Youtube comments, email and Twitter.”
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Buy The Sapling

Buy The Sapling + soundtrack

Includes 2 items: The Sapling, The Sapling Soundtrack

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About This Game

Design algae and plants

Whether you want a small flower that glows in the dark, black algae specialized for planets without a lot of sunlight, or a forest of giant trees covered in spikes, it's up to you.

Design aquatic, land and flying animals

Want a brightly colored fish that drags itself onto land to hide its eggs in burrows? Or perhaps a land animal that gives birth to live young and quickly runs from flower to flower to drink nectar? Or what about a flying carnivore specialized for diving and catching its prey underwater? Again, it's up to you.

Scenarios: learn the simulation step by step

While the simulation in this game can be deep and complex, it's introduced to the player step by step; it never becomes overwhelming. Each scenario tasks you to build an ecosystem that meets specific requirements, and introduces a small number of new concepts.

Sandbox: build your own planet

The sandbox offers the same functionality as the scenarios (but, obviously, with everything unlocked), but also much more: play with the procedural planet generator to get the exact planet you want, whether it's a desert world, an underwater world, or whatever you come up with. It even allows you to define up to 8 seasons to spice that ecosystem up a little. While playing, you can continue to change things: the next ice age is always only a few clicks away.

Turn on random mutations and see what evolution does with your ecosystem

The most exciting feature of the sandbox, at least according to solo dev Wessel Stoop, is random mutations. See your algae, plants and animals evolve to quickly fill available niches, see how some species are outcompeted immediately while others bloom for thousands of years... only to die out when their food source evolves a new trick to escape, and a completely different clade jumps in the now vacant niche.

System Requirements

SteamOS + Linux
    • OS *: Windows 7
    • Processor: A processor with SSE2 instruction set support
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Graphics card with DX10 (shader model 4.0) capabilities.
    • DirectX: Version 10
    • Storage: 150 MB available space
    • Memory: 16 GB RAM
* Starting January 1st, 2024, the Steam Client will only support Windows 10 and later versions.
    • OS: Ubuntu 16 or newer
    • Processor: A processor with SSE2 instruction set support
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Graphics card with DX10 (shader model 4.0) capabilities.
    • Storage: 150 MB available space
    • Memory: 16 GB RAM

What Curators Say

7 Curators have reviewed this product. Click here to see them.

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