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Project Status: actually painful to work with

RNAworld is a minimalistic, experimental, and highly simplified evolution simulation game based on the RNA World Hypothesis and heavily inspired by the open-source evolution game Thrive!

much like the molecules that inspired it, this game's code is long, tangled, created haphazardly, and nigh indecipherable.

if i ever start working on it again, i might just start it over from scratch.

'gameplay' depicting a strand of RNA floating through the primordial soup

In RNAworld, you guide a strand of RNA (the precursor to DNA) drifting through the primordial soup. By collecting free-floating nucleotides, you can replicate yourself, mutate new structures, and evolve!

Over time, NPC "populations" of "species" of RNA molecules will grow, causing the concentrations of chemicals in the ocean to change over time.

a mutation menu, with options to increase or decrease size, or write or clear a gene

Want to resist the currents or drift slightly faster to your goal? There's a mutation for that. When nucleotides become too scarce, get a mutation that produces new ones from chemicals in the water around you! Combine amino acids into helpful proteins! Want some brief respite from the harsh environment? Temporarily encapsulate yourself within a membrane, and embed proteins in it to perform processes and let larger molecules in!

By the end of the game, your strand's many adaptations will have turned it into a very basic, early form of a unicellular organism.

concept art of a membrane containing a long strand of RNA

Sound like fun?

i probably should have thought of that first.

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