Clockwork Empires Announced - Steampunk City-Builder from Dungeons of Dredmor DeveloperCategory: Gaming
Posted: August 27, 2012 11:08AM
Take a little SimCity and turn it steampunk, some Dwarf Fortress and make it modern, a dash of Anno and mix it with some H.P. Lovecraft, and what do you have? Clockwork Empires, the new steampunk city-builder from the creator of Dungeons of Dredmor, is set to be such a game. Gaslamp Games has left the 2D world behind and is crafting a 3D city-builder full of 19th century ideas. Clockwork Empires will have "street urchins, aristocrats, volcanoes, sea serpents, war zeppelins, mad scientists, and at least one foodstuff that doubles as a building material." The game will feature mods, multiplayer, a fascinating story, and plenty more to keep you coming back time and again.
Clockwork Empires puts you in the shoes of an outpost founder and overseer trying to build a colony in an exotic land. You will be able to build factories, cathedrals, pubs, houses, barracks, labs, and even mega projects with various tools at your disposal, like pipes, gears, steam, and Tesla coils. The colony can be populated with upper, middle, and lower-class people, from clerks and scientists to factory workers and the rich. The world of Clockwork Empires is expotentially more dangerous than something actually explored in the real world, as Gaslamp's CEO Daniel Jacobsen explains the game world is similar to old globes with monsters drawn all over. Art director David Baumgart says the world is more chaotic with magic and other strange things possible further out from the heart of the Empire.
This is Gaslamp's take on city-builders, albeit one with a Lovecraft-inspired twist. You need to keep an eye on what is going on in your city, as a building full of scientists left unchecked could start summoning demons, according to Jacobsen. Not everything will be as bad as that, although fishermen away from shore may run into sea monsters and the like. That ever-present danger is a key part of Clockwork Empires, as your colony will be beset by things trying to destroy it. There is no actual victory condition considering this is a sandbox game, but like Dungeons of Dredmor, failing will be fun. Maybe a disease will spread and wipe out your population, or maybe those scientists successfully summon a demon to enslave humanity. Death will come in all shapes and sizes, but do not fret when it happens. Just know that you will be able to go again after notching another mark in a larger story.
The game uses a procedural 3D building technology to let you customize any structure to your heart's content. You input some stylistic goals into a floor plan, like the type of roof or walls you want, and Clockwork Empires makes it happen. This will help make every building unique and give a certain look to your cities, which is always nice to see in a city-builder. There is plenty more to cover on Clockwork Empires, so head over to the source to read all about it. PC Gamer will have an in-depth interview tomorrow and the upcoming issue has a feature story on it. You can also check out the official press release here.