I’ve managed theme parks, zoos, dinosaur parks, football teams, nations, planets, corporations. farms, hockey teams, hospitals, golf courses and more. But this is the first time I have been in charge of a ski resort. At least that’s the idea of Snowtopia.

I can’t pretend that Snowtopia brings anything new to the genre as there have been so many variations of management sims that it is really hard to stand out. All I ask now is that the game I am playing is competent and fun.

Well with Snowtopia you have a game that is the very definition of middle-ground. Developers TeaForTwo do nothing wrong with the game, but neither do they take any risks. Everything about it is just played safe.

However, it is playing it safe that makes Snowtopia quite an enjoyable experience. You’ll start by adding a ski slope, ski lift and a few basic amenities and vital utilities, then building out from there.

It isn’t restricted as such, but there are a few rules that can make things a little bit fiddly and it took me a restart or two to get a base layout I was happy with. I was hit by areas that were too steep to add a ski-lift and encountered issues where I was building a slope downhill but was told I couldn’t as there was a slight uphill section. Annoying but not game-breaking.

This is a game in early access of course, so little quirks here and there are to be expected and there aren’t actually that many and is quite a smooth experience at this stage.

That isn’t to say there are some issues that need ironing out before we get a full release. Early on I needed to build my resort up to bring in a set number of skiers, but it didn’t seem very clear what I needed to do, so some guidance in the UI would help. It took me a lot of guessing and experimenting to get some progress here.

Now whilst that shouldn’t be the case, I was never overly punished for building and destroying, so I felt free to play around which was nice. I do expect this to change at some point, but I liked the casual approach.

Snowtopia looks pretty nice too. Sure it isn’t anything special but it does enough to sell the mountain resort feel and having a white canvas, means it uses colours in an effective way to draw your eye to the areas you need.

I can’t exactly say this is a game you would do well to get in early access, but you can do much worse and if you fancy another management scenario after conquering Mars or reviving Jurassic Park, then this could be a nice option.

I certainly am looking forward to what the final release turns out like.

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