Delectable Deities: Reus Puts God Back In The God Game

By Craig Pearson on January 15th, 2013 at 4:00 pm.

Other titles for this included 'Good God' and 'Reus Sex'. Also: STARING EYES!
Hallelujah! Just look at Reus, the prettiest game I’ve seen allllll year. I’d probably be willing to make that statement in February, btw. Come March I’ll reevaluate. Reus is a God game where you play a huge God, hunkered down over the world like a child over his toys, plucking at the malleable world and moulding it. The trailer is below, and I insist you watch it right away.

I just love the aesthetics, which are a product of the developers Abbey Games: “Wouldn’t it be awesome to control a titan as such, and model the landscapes to your liking?” The answer appears to be *fistbump*.

You control a giant that can change the planet’s landscape, grasping stone in the giant rock creature’s arms to make mountains, or pounding the ground to create waterways with the crab’s claws. The creatures seem to have very specific roles to play in the land-scaping. There’s another woodsy fellow walking around that I imagine does amazing things with forests.

Like all god botherers, the game is eventually about the relationship that develops with the humans that inhabit the land, balancing their wants and needs. According to a devblog just posted: “With prosperity comes power. If the humans gain too much power too fast, they don’t know what to do with it and become obsessed with it. Large civilization might start wars to gain more land. Wealthy civilization might become recklessly greedy. Advanced civilization might trigger mishaps with their curiosity. So what do you do when the greedy civilization starts to destroy the adorable balanced civilization, and you have all the powers of nature? THAT’S RIGHT, YOU HURL HURRICANES AND ROCKS AT THEM!! A more subtle way of dealing with these problems is by placing natural danger to temper the growth of civilizations. Just add a bunch of lions to the land, and the greedy civilization will be to busy dealing with lions to start a pillage somewhere else.”

That sounds hilarious. There’s a lot more in the blog about the challenges of balancing playing as an actual God, and how to balance their powers, but I’ll send you there rather than recap it because it has some brilliant MS Paint art examples to go along with the words.

But this looks lovely, and the notion of Gods crouching behind the world, watching their creations, has gotten me very intrigued. And excited. Excitrigued!

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46 Comments »

  1. Jeremy says:

    This looks pretty great, has this ever been done before? I mean, god games have of course been done, but this seems like gods v. creation, which is not something I can remember seeing before.

    • Shockeh says:

      Black & White, maybe?

      • emorium says:

        Nope. Black and White is about gods vs gods with creation as their weapon. In B&W creation doesn’t do anything without a god and a god is powerless without their creation.

    • Xocrates says:

      Sandbox of God sort of does.

    • Baf says:

      Afterlife is the closest thing I can think of, and it only lets you interact with the world of the living in a very abstract way.

  2. frightlever says:

    What do the giants add to the game? Is it just a mechanism to slow down change? ie you have to wait until you ponderously move a giant around the globe before you can effect change, rather than just moving a floating hand cursor there immediately.

    • Grargh says:

      And why are there soundtrack and colors? How does that improve the gameplay mechanics at all? Is it just to irritate my rational judgement of the numbers behind it?

    • Baines says:

      At the end of the video, the people are attacking the giants with arrows.

  3. Bhazor says:

    Looks lovely but I’m worried it will just end up playing like another tug of war igame where you just trigger units to spawn and watch them march in a straight line at the enemy. A god game with proper empire management and Total War scale battles would be amazing.
    But still, could be good, colour me intrigued.

    Watching your god just chilling out in the background as your worshippers work is pretty great though.

    • Didero says:

      If I read things right, there is no clear enemy, like an opposing tribe.
      You control all the giants, and you need to balance between helping the humans develop and keeping them humble enough to not attack your giants.
      Which makes this far more interesting to me than god games with a clear combat focus.

      • benkc says:

        Yeah — that certainly sounds intriguing.

      • AshEnke says:

        I don’t know about opposing tribes, but in one of the dev diaries :
        “You might have noted that we’re making something with a 2D planet and a giant”

        I think you only control one giant, the only one on the planet, and he is in charge of the whole population. It’s both your friend and your enemy.

      • Bhazor says:

        That sounds way more interesting than the Swords and Soldiers clone I was expecting. Colour me hyped.

  4. StranaMente says:

    It looks brilliant already. The only thing I wonder is if the world isn’t too small, in this video at least, the gods seem to stand too close to each other. Besides that it’s amazing.

    • frightlever says:

      I may have got the wrong end of the stick, but the giants aren’t the god. The god uses them as tools.

      I’m right, right?

  5. affront says:

    Hopefully the essentially 2D maps can provide enough depth, as otherwise this looks pretty cool.
    I could really use a bunch more good godgames.

  6. tobecooper says:

    I like it. Looks like a more interesting 2D version of Black & White.
    The monkey is no more! Release the giants!

  7. Zandhork says:

    “Reus” is the Dutch word for “Giant”. My justification for stating this not-entirely-coincidental fact is that the development studio is based in the Netherlands

    • Ross Angus says:

      Ah. I thought it might be connected to “Deus”. Thanks!

    • Didero says:

      I was about to post the same thing. Without the justification though.
      I didn’t know the devs were Dutch. Interesting!

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      They also have someone called Bas and someone called Adriaan working for them. Which is funny if you’re Dutch. :)

  8. monkeybars says:

    Wait, an interesting concept for a game of questionable quality and mechanics that isn’t asking me to pay them money upfront to make it? They’re just going to use their OWN money and take a risk!? Colour me excited.

    • Hoaxfish says:

      It’s a strange world, who knows what innovation we’ll see next. Mayhaps, offline purchasing of wares containing digital files on some sort of disc-like item

      Nah! Tis madness! Heresy!.

    • lordcooper says:

      I kinda want to give them money to show my support for them not not asking for my money :(

    • President Weasel says:

      I would like to be reminded about this game when it is available to purchase.

      RPS! I request you remind me of this game at that juncture!

  9. Knightley4 says:

    So, 2D Black&White+terraforming and your creature is You. Lovely, i just hope that planet isn’t so small as it is in the trailer.

  10. Hoaxfish says:

    Was expecting a giant finger to come down and squash the people, but this is good too.

    They could pair it with a second game, where you play one of the people with an ever-present giant god peering down on you.

  11. Tei says:

    Looks lovelly!. But with only a 1D surface, you are going to terraform way too quick, and have too simple strategy options (namelly: left and right).

    • mrmalodor says:

      You mean 2D.

      • wccrawford says:

        No, he meant 1D. There’s only 1 dimension to it: Left and right. You can’t terraform up or down, or forwards or backwards.

        You can raise a mountain, or sink a valley, but the surface is still only 1-dimensional.

        Terraria, on the other hand, is 2D because you *can* do things on multiple levels. And Minecraft is 3D because you can do things in 3 dimensions.

      • Eclipse says:

        gameplay wise is 1D, as you can act in a single line, even if that line is in 2d space, it’s still a 1D surface as you need only one coordinate to know where you are on the line

    • meatshit says:

      I agree. It looks nice, but I’m afraid it’s going to be a game where you’re either twiddling your thumbs most the time or done with what it has to offer in 15 minutes.

  12. mrmalodor says:

    Interesting that they chose a side-scrolling world. That’s not very common in strategy games. The only other side-scrolling RTS that I know of is Tone Rebellion.

  13. Eclipse says:

    looks like a simplified Black&White, but simpler it’s not always a bad thing right? right?

  14. Zunt says:

    That looks delectable. Delectable. Delectable.

    • Craig Pearson says:

      I’m amazed no-one else spotted that. It’ll forever be in the URL. The pain.

      • Zunt says:

        Sorry. I really wanted not to comment on it. But if I hadn’t, it would have itched away at me, gnawing the fringes of my mind as I slept. Eventually I would have snapped and committed gory slaughter with the hammer again.

      • Hoaxfish says:

        Just pretend you wrote it with an accent

  15. AmateurScience says:

    Oh my that looks beautiful. Lets hope it plays as good as it looks.

  16. derella says:

    I want this! It looks gorgeous, potentially fun :D

  17. Hunchback says:

    Kind of reminds me of Sacrifice. Sacrifice was great. Why won’t someone make a sequel to Sacrifice already? :(

  18. Malibu Stacey says:

    Is this what Tiny, Treant Protector and Sand King get up to on their days off?