Black Gold: Oil Rush Is Surprising


There is no niche the PC will not fill. And while clearly something is going to have to go a long way to beat Street Cleaning Simulator (which still sounds like a Your Sinclair running joke to me), it’s good to see the field of oil drilling is not left out with Oil Rush. Except, wait a second. This looks… it looks rather good. And I’m fairly sure drilling stations aren’t usually this well armed.

I was being all, like, “Ha ha, an oil drilling game,” and now I’m like, “Oh.”

Created in Unigine, and indeed by Unigine (a name that will always disappoint me since I learned it’s not “Ungine”), this is an exceptionally pretty strategy game. Jim first spotted it in September last year. It’s a combination of traditional RTS and more John-friendly tower defence. Don’t believe me, you cynical bastard? Take a look at this 12 minute mission walkthrough:

I’ve got a feeling I’m going to have to get someone who understands strategy games to give this one a proper look. The game is due out later this Summer, and you can pre-order it now for $20. The site says this comes with access to early builds, although it’s not clear if that’s now, or soon.


  1. P7uen says:

    I’ve travelled many mouse clicks to be here today.

    I’m an oil man, I’m an oil man and a PC gaming man, and as a PC gaming man I’m going to pre-order this game so that I can continue to do a Daniel Plainview voice out loud to the screen as I am doing now.

    I speel my milkshake!

  2. Gundrea says:

    This reminds me of Rise of Nations: Rise of Legends

    Also I can look at it for you. I do not simply understand strategy games. I am strategy games.

    • Symitri says:

      Rise of Nations remains one of my favourite strategy games of all time. Civ 5 would be higher up if it included the option to limit progress so you never go beyond a certain age outside of scenarios but that’s always been the game-breaker to me. Who wants to play with guns and giant robot mechs! Give me infantry and archers any day.

    • Orija says:

      Rise of Legends was a big disappointment, the first steampunk-based storyline was awesome but the rest of the game steadily declined into ‘meh’ territory.

    • Crainey says:

      What happened to Rise of Nations, it seemed to have just stopped? I put endless amounts of hours playing that game online with my friends and had much fun.

    • apollyonbob says:

      Big Huge decided to make a sequel to it that had none of the things that made the original successful or popular, and it pretty much sucked.

      And I think they kind of lost enough money on it that they ended up downsizing. Or maybe got bought out and shifted around? I can’t remember. Anyway, I think the last thing they did was Settlers of Catan, and since then have moved on to a new studio.

      But Rise of Nations is unlikely to go anywhere again, which is sad.

  3. Yosharian says:

    This looks neat, but we need more details?

  4. Tusque D'Ivoire says:

    Also of note: This is a push for linux gaming, as Unigine has its name because it runs on Linux, too! Wahey!

  5. Karol says:

    I don’t know if you guys have played it, but this game looks a lot like the indie game Dyson (in core gameplay mechanics).
    The presentation is fancy looking and well made, but you still seem to control the units in the same way as in Dyson.

    • Squire says:

      Yeah noticed the same thing Karol, with the dragging arrows between rigs.
      It looks like a cross between Eufloria [Release name for Dyson] and something C&C/Red Alert like.

    • binstream says:

      You can select units of some specific type instead of sending the whole fleet. There are also special skills to be applied in the right place.

    • jamesgecko says:

      Or Galcon, which was a few years before Dyson/Eufloria. Or Galactic Conquest, which dates back to like 1985.

  6. Nemon says:

    It’s actually very common to have top drives, roughnecks, n-line tensioner and hydrarackers equipped with chainguns and rocket launchers nowadays. This looks like a perfect simulator.

    • Tei says:

      I work for a company. And we are building a network of turrets, AA, antitank, anti-sub, radars, in a oil zone in the ice cape. We even have a enormeous underwater base that can be moved, It was built by different contractors and assembled here. Everyone here is ready for the oil peak and the war that will spawn after it. I have helped program the Friend or Foe detector. Is part a open source library from sourceforge, part some chinese video capture cards. It can track faces, and aim to then. Theres still some bugs we have to debug. Like vulcan turrets shotting to people with che guevara t-shirts.
      (We have put a easter egg in the code so the turrets can play the zelda tune while dancing and shotting to the clouds, if you have a t-shirt with the tri-force).

    • Tusque D'Ivoire says:

      And in the Game?

    • TsunamiWombat says:

      I love you Tei.

  7. Pinkables says:

    The name Unigine has never quite sat right with me. I don’t know what it is, but whenever i see it i have to read it about 5 times before the letters make any sense to me.

    • Item! says:

      Indeed – I have to force myself to stop reading it as “Un-engine”

    • Pinkables says:

      Far too much ambiguity for my liking. I’ve come to settle on a sort of “You-knee-Jean” pronunciation. That seems as good as any to me.

  8. Coins says:

    This reminds me of Waterworld. Cool.

    • mortimasIV says:

      Except this sounds terrible but is great. Waterworld was the opposite.

  9. Vexing Vision says:

    What do you mean, “Hahaha it’s an oil rigging game”…. I can’t be the only one who played Oil Imperium 1 and 2 until their C4/Amiga fried?

    This does look pretty good.

    • MartinNr5 says:

      I’d be careful with frying C4 – it’s quite explosive you know.

    • Morte66 says:

      C4 needs to be set off with a detonator. I don’t know what it’s like fried, but I do know you can burn lumps of it and put a frying pan on top to cook tinned meat. SOE types in France in 1944 used to do just that. Really. When they ran out of paraffin for their stoves, they burned C4 instead.

    • Vexing Vision says:

      That was supposed to be a C64, but for some reason my keyboard EXPL… err, failed.

      I shall not cave in and edit the original post, hoping to spark additiona amusement at the typo.

  10. LTK says:

    I can’t help but wonder how it is they’re sinking a submarine by shooting at it from speedboats. It’s a submarine, for god’s sake!

    • DainIronfoot says:

      The same way men with machine guns can take down a massive warship in SC2.

    • binstream says:

      The game is developed in Siberia, there is no ocean in there!

  11. pekbro says:

    Looks like a green peace training video.

  12. DainIronfoot says:

    This has come on leaps and bounds from the last time we saw it. Looks pretty cool!

  13. Khemm says:

    I can imagine the inability to zoom the camera out a bit farther making me furious in the long run, hope you’re not forced to play the game zoomed in as close as in the video.
    The game looks pretty nice that aside, will there be a demo?

    • binstream says:

      There will be a demo later, at the moment all pre-order users get instant access to pre-release builds (updated each 1-2 weeks).

  14. Zelius says:

    An oil-drilling tower-defense game? I’m listening.

    Even looks slightly steampunkish.

  15. j814wong says:

    Really, the game looks fantastic but the main reason I’m interested in it is also being developed for Linux as well as Windows and OSX.

    Linux needs more great games like this.

  16. ChainsawCharlie says:

    Looks decent. $20 maybe bit steep though

  17. Otto Lidenbrock says:

    It’s always nice to see a game that supports Linux, not really my sort of game but I might buy it to support the developers.

  18. Ruadhan says:

    “The site says this comes with access to early builds, although it’s not clear if that’s now, or soon.”

    I pre-ordered, and am downloading a preview build now…

  19. superemmjay says:

    What? No Deus Ex jokes despite the fact that the headline has Black and Gold? Not your day, RPS hivemind?

  20. Axess Denyd says:

    I’m sorry, in what way could shooting people in Che Guevara shirts POSSIBLY be considered incorrect behavior?

    Ah, lovely broken reply system. Sigh.

    • Gilly says:

      Broken? No, mr. Bond…

      Maybe the targeting software has access to databanks counting Ernesto as “Been shot already, you dumbass. Waste no ammo!”?

  21. senshikaze says:

    I have been in the pre-order since day 0, and it has jumped by leaps and bounds every release. You get the dev copies when you pre-order. The game is all but done, and is really fun to play.
    What’s cool about being in the pre-order is that you get to see how a game comes together, especially if you post bugs on their forums. Also, the devs have a quirky sense of humor (one release had a “feature” that was the multi-player was broken (they were retooling it, I think; it is fixed now))

  22. SuperNashwanPower says:

    As an employee of the oil industry, I demand the added realism of being able to share a bunkroom with a fat, flatulent scottish man called Angus, owner of the World’s Hairiest Back. I am not sure if this game adequately captures the spirit of voluntarily imprisoning yourself for two weeks at a time that is working offshore.