Skip to content

Splice animals in 'Let's Build A Zoo', a zoo tycoon with a dark underbelly

Let's Build a Zoo offers the chance to care for animals and create an idyllic sanctuary. Or splice species and sell them on the black market.

Chris Button
Chris Button
2 min read
Splice animals in 'Let's Build A Zoo', a zoo tycoon with a dark underbelly

Every now and then, you stumble across a game you didn't know you wanted. Let's Build a Zoo is one of those games.

Not at all related (unfortunately) to the Matt Damon-led film We Bought a Zoo, Let's Build a Zoo is an upcoming indie game in the vein of the classic Zoo Tycoon games - with a twist.

It appears the animals you care for can just as easily be exploited for profit. Which is still better than NFT horse racing, to be honest.

Developed by Springloaded Games and published by UK indie label No More Robots - the latter boasts stellar titles such as post-Brexit border control sim Not Tonight, mountain bike racer Descenders, and pilgrimage card-based roguelike Nowhere Prophet - Let's Build a Zoo sees you operate an animal sanctuary.

What sort of animal sanctuary is entirely up to you. There are hundreds of animals to import and breed, buildings and decorations to build, plus plenty of staff to recruit.

With gorgeous pixel art and lush animation, Let's Build a Zoo looks like a wonderful nostalgia trip for anyone who grew up playing Zoo Tycoon, while offering something new for first-timers.

One separating factor between Let's Build a Zoo and the zoo tycoons of old is the high-tech animal DNA splicing technology on offer, letting you combine animals to create your own abominations. Apparently, more than 300,000 combinations exist.

Does this mean I can make a kangaroo-crocodile hybrid? A Kangodile? Crocaroo?

I certainly hope so, at the risk of infringing on Crash Bandicoot character Dingodile.

Even more compelling is the promise of a morality system woven throughout Let's Build a Zoo. You can treat your staff and animals well, or become a zoo tyrant and use animals for nefarious purposes. Morbidly, the end of the teaser trailer shows a glimpse at an industrial, polluted park replete with a building adorned by a handbag next to a reptile.

Shopping animals around on the black market, anyone?

Let's Build a Zoo is coming to Steam this Winter, with wishlists open now, plus closed beta signups for anyone keen for some morally questionable animal sanctuary action.


Chris Button

Chris is an award-nominated writer based in Adelaide who specialises in covering video games and technology. He loves Donkey Kong Country, sport, and cats. The Last Jedi is the best one, no questions

Related Posts

Microsoft Flight Simulator gets a Dune expansion

There are a lot of games getting totally carried away with IP tie-ins. There's plenty I like, there's plenty more that are real head scratchers on why they exist. One of the best I've ever seen has to be this new update for Microsoft

Geometry Wars mixed with Vampire Survivors? Yes please

Geometry Survivor is out now: A "rogue-lite auto-shooter" that looks super fun. Seemingly a blend of the Xbox classic Geometry Wars and Vampire Survivors, take a look at the trailer and you'll know if it's for you or not. It's on Xbox,

The very particular purpose of a PlayStation Portal

At first glance I wasn't sure what problem a PlayStation Portal solves. But after a bit more thinking it's going to be exactly what a specific kind of household needs.

The very particular purpose of a PlayStation Portal