Strategy 05 March 2013
The fifth installment in the popular economic strategy game series - SimCity. The game was developed by EA Maxis Studios (known for The Sims and Spore) with publishing support from the Electronic Arts company. In accordance to the tradition of the series, you becomes a mayor of a virtual city who has to turn it into a bustling metropolis. To this end, you have to deal with complex management issues, economic and social problems, as well as quickly react to various random events (e.g. natural disasters). The new SimCity stands out from the previous games in the series thanks to its advanced game engine - Glassbox, as well as extensive social panel CityLog (inspired of similar systems used in Need for Speed and Battlefield games).
Life is Feudal: Forest Village (PC)
Strategy 26 May 2017
A city builder strategy game created by Mindillusion. The player is placed in charge of an early-medieval settlement. One's prime goal here is to maintain an appropriate balance between expanding the village and being able to survive in a hostile environment. Thus, apart from utilizing more and more space, constructing new buildings and upgrading the existing ones, the player has to give proper winter clothing to their subordinates and deliver them with balanced meals. The last can be achieved through growing different kinds of plants, breeding animals and storing food; making light of these aspects can result in dangerous epidemics. Apart from that, the player's village can fall victim to attacks of predators and various natural disasters, such as tornadoes or storms, which can cause a fire. All such events affect the spirit of the villagers, which is reflected by a special meter - unhappy workers become less productive. Life is Feudal: Forest Village offers a three-dimensional environment. Interestingly, the player can switch between an isometric view and first-person perspectives (as one of his subjects).
Strategy 18 February 2014
Banished is a real-time economical strategy game, the first one developed by Luke Hodorowicz, the founder of the independent studio Shining Rock Software LLC. The player controls a small group of people exiled from their home country, who are trying to settle down in a new place and create the foundations of a powerful kingdom. The task calls, first and foremost, for ensuring the survival of a small society, and then managing its development. The gameplay focuses heavily on reasonable use of resources and methodical care for the player's subjects, constantly threatened by such dangers as hunger, diseases or unfavorable weather conditions (drought, harsh winters, etc.). Along the course of the game, the village grows in size and the gameplay difficulty increases.
Cities: Skylines (PC)
Strategy 10 March 2015
An economic strategy game belonging to the popular genre of city builders. This one was created by the Finnish studio Colossal Order, creators of the Cities In Motion series. The game is a response to the popular SimCity franchise from Maxis Studios. In contrast to the previous titles from the Finns, this one is not limited to public transportation, letting you build up a whole virtual metropolis from scratch. The game is set on maps providing 36 square kilometers of terrain each, where you can build your dream city and take care of its inhabitants by raising new buildings and creating transportation network. Economic aspect is the crucial element to the game – while playing, you have to keep an eye on the city budget, provided by your citizens' taxes, and establish trade contacts with neighboring cities. You also develop means of public transportation to help your citizens get around the city faster. The game features high quality 3D graphics and full mod support.
Aven Colony (PC)
Strategy 25 July 2017
A city builder strategy game developed by the independent studio Mothership Entertainment. The player arrives at the planet Aven Prime, assuming the role of the founder of one of one of the first extraterrestrial colonies. His tasks include expansion and settlement of new areas, taking care of the settlement’s technological infrastructure and the morale of its inhabitants, as well as fighting dangerous fauna and results of extreme weather conditions. The action takes place in varied environments: starting from swamps, through deserts, to icy polar regions, which influences the conditions in subsequent missions. The core of Aven Colony is the single player story campaign. The game also features a sandbox mode where we have no additional tasks apart from commanding a space base. The production’s graphics are high-quality not only because of the well-designed environments but also thanks to interesting designs of futuristic buildings.
Kingdoms and Castles (PC)
Strategy 20 July 2017
An economic strategy game developed by Lion Shield, a team set up by former members of Maxis – the studio behind the SimCity series. In contrast to the aforementioned franchise, Kingdom and Castles is set in a fantasy world. You take the role of the manager of a small village which you are to develop and transform into a thriving city with a castle able to withstand enemy attacks. During gameplay, you need to gather resources necessary for putting up buildings. Also, you need to skilfully manage farms so as to feed all your peasants. However, if you forget that seasons in this title change, you might face famine. You have to strike a balance between the satisfaction of the inhabitants and the tax rates you impose on them. The objective is to defend your city from Viking raids and dragons attacks. To survive, you need to build castles with defensive walls and watchtowers.
Tropico 5 (PC)
Strategy 23 May 2014
The fifth installment in the popular series of economic strategy games developed by studio Haemimont Games, which is responsible for the franchise since the third entry in the series. The game makes the player a leader of a small tropical island, responsible for governing it all the way from the colonial age through modern times and to the near future. Your tasks will be, as usual, to develop the city and take care of its industry and economy. You must also react in real time to the changing situation caused by natural disasters, different needs of the society, and global politics. The new installment adds the possibility to create your own dynasty and entrust the most important positions in the government to your own family members. For the first time in the history of the series the game features a multiplayer mode for up to four players.
Anno 1800 (PC)
Another installment in the popular economy strategy series published by Ubisoft and since 2011, developed by Blue Byte Software - Ubisoft's subsidiary studio known for working on The Settlers series. Like the previous installments in the Anno series set across centuries, in Anno 1800, a player assumes the role of a steward tasked with establishing a prosperous metropolis. One begins with a minor settlement inhabited by a handful of subjects, who have to gather resources, erect new buildings, and create complex trade relations allowing for the fast development of the city infrastructure. During the game, a player also has to tend to the needs of the settlers and properly balance the budget, which at times of crisis can be patched up with trading the goods and increasing taxes. Diplomacy is also an important aspect of the game, as it allows a player to establish various relations, enter alliances, and wage wars with the neighboring states.
Dawn of Discovery (PC)
Strategy 25 June 2009
The fourth major installment in the popular series of economy simulators that began in 1998. It was developed by Related Designs, a subsidiary of Ubisoft. As the title says, the action takes place in the Middle Ages during the Age of Discovery, and the players assume the role of colonists who managed to reach the eastern coast of Asia. The gameplay mechanics do not deviate from the well-known standards of the series. Starting out with a modest colony established on a remote island, we have to develop it and transform subsequent cities into metropolises brimming with life. Anno 1404 offers a sophisticated economy model that involves creating complex production chains as well as effective trade and diplomacy. Among this myriad of lesser novelties, especially noteworthy one is the sandbox mode that allows us to play freely without any plot limitations.
Anno 2205 (PC)
Strategy 03 November 2015
The sixth major installment in a popular economic strategy game series, which started in the Medieval Times (1404-1701) and went all the way to the future (Anno 2070). This new title was developed by the creators of The Settlers franchise, Blue Byte Software, who took part in the development of the previous Anno game. This one lets you play as a governor of a huge futuristic metropolis, and you have to make it thrive till you can launch an expedition to the Moon. Initially, the game is set on Earth, but eventually you move to the surface of our planet’s satellite, where you set up a colony to harvest and process resources. Despite its futuristic setting, gameplay mechanics remained faithful to the traditions of the franchise. Throughout the gameplay you get to construct various residential and industrial buildings, which develop automatically or can be upgraded manually, if you prefer.
Anno 2070 (PC)
Strategy 17 November 2011
Another installment in the popular series of economy strategy games developed cooperatively by Related Designs, the creators of the franchise, and the legendary Blue Byte studio under the watchful eye of Ubisoft. The fifth entry in the series, contrary to the previous ones, takes the players to the future, to the eponymous year of 2070, when climatic changes drastically raised water levels around the world, forcing humankind to move to higher ground. The gameplay mechanics use a number of characteristic solutions of the series but not without several novelties. A grand ship, called the Ark, is our base of operations that can be upgraded with each completed mission. There are three different factions to choose from, each possessing a different development tree. The first one offers advanced industry and aggressive expansion possibilities, the second focuses primarily on environmental protection, while the third one emphasizes modern technologies. The available game modes include a classical single player campaign, continuous mode as well as co-op and competitive multiplayer modes.
Strategy 30 October 1999
A cult economic strategy game created by Impressions Games and published by Sierra Entertainment. Pharaoh takes place in the Nile valley, several hundred years B.C., and spans from the era of the great pyramids to the New Kingdom period. As the pharaoh, the ruler of Egypt, you have to transform local villages into great cities, take care of your people's needs, and make your country the greatest of them all. A big factor in the development of your country is agriculture, which is dependent on the flooding of the Nile. You develop your cities, build famous structures (such as the pyramids, the Sphinx, or the Luxor Temple), and also oversee the trade, religion and culture. Apart from governing the cities, the game also features a tactical combat system, both on land and at sea. Pharaoh features several single-player campaigns, each consisting of several dozen of missions. The 2D visuals of the game are very detailed and utilize an isometric view.
Zeus: Master of Olympus (PC)
Strategy 17 October 2000
Another economic strategy game by Impressions Games, known from e.g. Lords of the Realm and Caesar. The production is set in ancient Greece. You play as a leader of a city, which means, you have not only to develop your domain, but also to case for its citizens and appeasing the gods overseeing the region. You can also expand you city by founding colonies and fighting other factions—you can send ordinary troops to battle or use heroes, who can defeat mythological creatures, loot mysterious ruins, and lead armies in the most important battles. Zeus: Master of Olympus features high-quality visuals, with detailed building models and ubiquitous citizens, going on about their daily lives.
Ancient Cities (PC)
A real-time strategy game enriched with elements of RPGs, city builders, and survival games. Ancient Cities was developed by the independent Uncasual Games. The player assumes the role of a tribal leader living in the Neolithic era. The tasks of the player are to provide shelter and protection against predators for the members of the tribe, as well as to obtain sufficient amounts of food. Gathering resources (the whole in-game economy is based on them) resembles a survival game, as flora and fauna are simulated within a dynamic ecosystem. Consequently, wild plants and animals are soon not enough to sustain a tribe which grows constantly. In harsh periods, the player has to distribute supplies wisely - for instance, foods get naturally degraded over time. Things can also get complicated as a result of sudden climatic changes and natural disasters - one oftentimes has to decide whether to stay in one's settlement and try to survive a difficult period, or to abandon the base in search for a safer zone. Alongside progression, the player unlocks new upgrades in the extensive technology tree, which allows to improve one's methods of crafting tools and cultivation, making the tribe's existence easier in so doing. Members of the tribe are described by individual sets of statistics, talents and skills. These mechanisms are complemented by having more or less friendly relations with other tribes.
SimCity 4 (PC)
Strategy 09 January 2003
A new entry in the popular series of city builders developed by Maxis. In comparison with the previous installments, SimCity 4 offers a wide range of new additions and updates. The governed city is no longer a single entity – we are free to connect different cities into a single metropolis linked by industry, public services, or economic means. Moreover, we are now able to view the citizens of each neighborhood and investigate their views and worries regarding the functioning of the city. Creative players received access to new terraforming tools, enabling us to level hills, choose a terrain type, or introduce water basins. The world itself now features a day and night cycle, as well as fully functional public services such as fire departments. Interestingly enough, the developers have introduced the ability to import characters from The Sims and settle them in the city. SimCity 4 is characterized by much more detailed three-dimensional visuals and a new user-friendly interface.
Anno 1404: Venice (PC)
Strategy 25 February 2010
An official expansion for the 2009's economic strategy Anno 1404, which is the fourth installment in the series launched more than a decade earlier by the Max Design studio. The add-on features the titular Venetian culture and with it the new merchant ships, the possibility to sabotage opponent's progress, and the institution of city council, which can be manipulated and bribed in order to take control of a foreign metropolis without bloodshed. Moreover, Anno 1404: Venice offers in total three hundred entirely new missions like economic race or loading of ships, sixty additional items, as well as the opportunity to discover and explore previously inaccessible kind of territory – a volcanic island. The biggest novelty is a multiplayer mode for up to 4 people, that was absent in the base game. Players can now compete against each other or form alliances against an opponent controlled by the computer.
Tropico 4 (PC)
Strategy 23 August 2011
The fourth installment in the humorous series of economic strategy games in which we assume the role of a ruthless dictator of a small banana republic. After the previous developer (responsible for the first installment from 2001) was taken over by THQ, the series was given to Haemimont Games. The main highlight of the gameplay is taking care of the country’s budget, which is fed by resource mining and production of various goods. The citizens’ happiness is also an important aspect. We take care of them through creating various public utility buildings. To get the political chaos under control, we can use military, bribes, intimidation, or even public executions. If brutal methods don’t serve their purpose anymore, we can attempt to talk with the opposition, and in case of a natural disaster, The Red Cross will heed our call. In the fourth installment of the game, we are introduced to a new set of special buildings and a system of trading with neighboring countries.
Urban Empire (PC)
Strategy 20 January 2017
An economy simulator focused on managing a city throughout two centuries, starting in 1820. It was developed by Fragment Productions, the creators of the Rescue series. In Urban Empire, we control an entire family from which the subsequent mayors of the city originate, and our tasks include developing the infrastructure and new districts, driving the economic growth, and ensuring our citizens’ satisfaction. The gameplay is richer thanks to the fact that, as decades pass, both the technology and the geopolitical situation change, constantly providing us with new challenges. Another interesting feature is the “unofficial” part of being a mayor — we can resort to various political and personal games as well as corrupting and blackmailing unfriendly persons.
Tropico 6 (PC)
One of the installments in the economy strategy game series started in 2001 - Tropico. The game has been developed by Limbic Entertainment - the creators of Might & Magic X: Legacy and Might & Magic: Heroes VII. In Tropico 6, a player assumes the role of El Presidente - the leader of a banana republic. The objective is to manage the country by developing the cities, providing the citizens with jobs, fixing the damage caused by various natural disasters, as well as issuing decrees that shape both domestic and foreign policies. One of the novelties delivered by Tropico 6 is the fact that the action of the game no longer takes place on a single island - instead, the country is spread between multiple islands, all of which have to be managed by a player at the same time. These islands can be connected by bridges and tunnels. The game also features the agents, who can be dispatched to different corners of the world to - not entirely legally - obtain blueprints of certain structures, such as the Statue of Liberty and The Eiffel Tower. Moreover, the developers decided to allow players to modify the main palace and appear before the society. During a speech, a player can e.g. make populistic promises.
Constructor HD (PC)
Strategy 26 May 2017
Remake of a bestselling economic strategy game released in 1997, prepared by creators of the original – British studio System 3 Software. In the game we take on the role of an owner of a construction company, and our goal is to develop a thriving business and eliminate competition, always breathing down our neck. During the game we have to take care of raw materials supply, such as concrete or wood, and construct customer-fit houses which, when sold or rented, will give us a reasonable profit. A characteristic feature of the title is the possibility to take advantage of various not always lawful methods of undermining the competition. We can bribe protesting hippies, psychopaths, thieves, or saboteurs, and in the later stages of the game also cooperate with mafia. The main feature of the refreshed version of Constructor are its HD resolution graphics. Creators decided not to interfere with the classic gameplay mechanics, keeping also the large dose of humor that traditionally accompanies our struggle.
Pharaoh Expansion: Cleopatra - Queen of the Nile (PC)
Strategy 28 July 2000
An official expansion for the Pharaoh game, a cult economic strategy by Impressions Games and Sierra Entertainment, once again set in the ancient Egypt. This time, as the title Cleopatra: Queen of the Nile implies, the expansion takes place in a slightly later period, during the rule of Queen Cleopatra, the most famous woman in the history of Egypt. Your task is to fight back the Romans, developing great cities, and building historical monuments, such as the Library of Alexandria or the Pharos of Alexandria. The expansion features 14 new historical scenarios (e.g. fighting side-by-side with Marcus Antonius against Octavian) and introduces new branches of the industry, buildings, and inventions. You also have to face rival nations, such as Persians, Macedonians, and Romans, as well as ordinary thieves. Another novelty introduced in the expansion are natural disasters in the form of hailstorms and locust.