By Alec Meer on January 7th, 2013 at 8:00 pm.
The trouble with games with long names is that it can become impossible to write non-prosaic headlines. For this reason, I demand that War For The Overworld be removed from the internet this instant, and its creators thrown into a fire.
…Which would be be a very silly thing for me to want, given it’s a remake/sequel of one of the games I most love, Dungeon Keeper. And now it’ll star the sinister tones of Richard Ridings, DK’s cheerfully malevolent narrator.
I must confess that when I first heard about War For The Overworld, and that it would be a Kickstarter, my eyes rolled skywards unbidden. It arrived during that crush of nostaglia-fuelled projects in the latter months of 2012, and lacked the involvement of the original devs too. That whole period, speaking as a games journo/blogger/hack/insert term you’re comfortable with, was overwhelming, each new day seeming to bring another resurrection that promised olden fans everything without offering much of anything concrete. War The Overworld was the straw that broken this cynical camel’s back, which wasn’t particularly fair on it. (Embarrassingly, the dev even spotted me having a moan about it on Twitter).
I do want a new Dungeon Keeper, but I want one that does new things with the same concept rather than the same things with better graphics and interface – a Dungeon Keeper XCOM to the original’s X-COM, if you will. War For The Overworld does appear to be more towards the latter than the form, but it is looking like a pretty tasty reworking and there is some talk of change as well sparkles. They’ve even won a Peter Molyneux endorsement:
They’ve also got a playable, Unity-powered, browser-base demo, which you can try here or watch in video-based movement form here:
Playing the demo does activate old excitements in me, I must confess. A new, shinier version of an old flame wouldn’t be such a bad thing even if they don’t change much.
WFTO has already been a Kickstarter success, and even went into stretch goals territory. Original DK narrator Richard Ridings had already played some part in the early trailers, but with £225k in devs Subterranean Games’ kitty he’s now officially and fully onboard for the full game. While the Kickstarter has closed, the devs are still taking pledges – and the attendant early beta access and assorted goodies at various tiers – on their website.
Here’s the woo-we-got-Ridings video: