Contrary to popular belief, Darwinia's Graphics are actually good. The game underneath is just as tasty.
There is definitely a "retro" look about Darwinia, but once you start to pay attention you notice that it looks damn good.
For reference, when cranked to max detail, this game can make your rig start to chug (I can get 90fps on HL2, and even play Oblivion and Fear on High Quality). Thats because great effort has gone into making this "simple geometry world" look highly detailed/realistic. You don't feel like you are looking at a crappy game from the 80's, instead it's as if they took one of those games and made it look *real*. If reality was all simple polygons, then this is how it would look. Beautifull.
The gameplay is simple, straightforward, easy to learn but difficult to master. The first few missions get you acquainted to the system, but it really starts to ramp up after that. While simple, it ain't easy, there is a good deal of strategy involved.
The story is impressively compelling. You really start to feel a part of this world, and the little darwinians start to feel like they are actually alive.
Ultimately, this game is a pure pleasure to play. Although the world appears terribly simple, it is incredibly immersive, challenging and fun.
Darwinia captures the pure essence of video gaming.