Clockwork Empires Offers Endless Laughs, Ageless Demons

You'll have to pry this already mostly eaten fish from my cold, dead hands!

If you place some kind of weird one-trailer-per-day restriction on yourself and are currently fretting about finding Mr or Ms Right: The Extremely Brief Videogame Preview, then look no further. Clockwork Empires, the latest ball of bits and bytes from Dungeons of Dredmor developer Gaslamp Games, just got its first trailer, and it’s sending RPS’ hyper-sensitive Delight-O-Meter into a tizzy. The game is a 19th century steampunk colony builder, but the trailer reveals that it’s so very much more than the staid stew of trite aesthetic cliches that description seems to imply. Somehow, it manages to prompt tearfloods of both uproarious laughter and bitter sadness within the span of, like, a minute. Also, there are giant squid monsters. Enough of my blathering. Watch.

Clockwork Empires is almost entirely freeform. You can expand your colony along lines laid down by “The Empire,” or you can shack up with another faction/none at all. Meanwhile, as the trailer suggests, many, many, many surprises await no matter how you choose to play.

“Cosmic Horror, Factories, Booze, Science, Et Cetera: Clockwork Empires is complete with all the elements for an industrial revolution, a colonial society pushed too far will break down and unleash horrors such as cultists, marauding fish-people, axe murderers, and things darker still from Beyond the Stars.”

That’s quite a melting pot of potential madness, and I’m pretty keen on seeing how it all comes together. Gaslamp’s pristine track record doesn’t hurt either, given that Dungeons of Dredmor was more brillo than a Brillo Pad. Can it inject the same deceptively careful measure of both randomness and calculation into a sandbox city building sim, though? We shall see. It’ll be out in spring 2014.


  1. Sparkasaurusmex says:

    This has been my most anticipated game all year. I really hope it’s great.

    • Synesthesia says:

      Yeah, me too. With this, prison architect and kerbal, i can be so very very happy.

      Also check out their dev blog, whoever hasnt. Its excellent.

    • ersetzen says:

      They have a pretty great development blog with updates about their progress once a week: link to
      Some pretty interesting stuff on there, at least if one has some basic interest in how they work.

  2. Blackseraph says:

    Reminds me of those magicka delayed trailers.

    Looks fun.

  3. lowprices says:

    Looking forward to this. The basic idea of the Gaslamp guys doing Dwarf Fortress with a usable interface is attractive enough, but throw in Victorian-era cosmic horror and it becomes a must-buy for me.

    • boyspud says:

      If you want a Dwarf Fortress-esque game with a ui now, look up Gnomoria. Its an early access game, but theres enough of a game there to play right now (I have well over 100 hours dumped into it). As it stands its pretty good, but it doesnt quite have the depth of DF. Really looking forward to Clockwork Empires, I hope it manages to scratch that DF itch.

    • mangobyte says:

      Honestly, I half-expected “Fun” to be hyperlinked…

  4. Ergates_Antius says:

    Bloody Genestealers ruining another lovely picnic.

    • BooleanBob says:

      Jamstealers, we call them around these parts. Always keep an adamantium rolled-up newspaper handy from about mid-August onwards.

  5. SuicideKing says:

    Didn’t find it funny, but yeah looked interesting.

  6. guygodbois00 says:

    An Empire without a tea kettle, samovar or some similar device is not worth having. Tea was and still is the fuel of any Empire, really. China, Japan, Russia, Great Britain, even Austria-Hungary, all tea, all the way. Those that substituted with coffee, well, history and all that…

    • GameCat says:

      Ok, my plan now is:
      1. Drink tea.
      2. Conquer the world.

      Damn, I didn’t know ruling the world (or at least huge part of it) is THAT easy.

      • guygodbois00 says:

        Yes, we are practically half way there. Pure green for the Emperor, milk, two sugars.

        • Sheng-ji says:

          What heresy is this, milk in green tea, pah

          • guygodbois00 says:

            Why, sweet milky heresy, of course. And I dare say, sometimes there’s even lemon in it.

      • Stompopolos says:

        Any old Creepy British Supervillain could tell you that.

    • jonahcutter says:

      The good old U.S.A. has built quite an extensive worldwide empire. Coffee-fueled. Tea is a distant second in most parts. Practically non-existent in those that drive the empire-mindedness most, really.

      Of course, we’re on the downside of that empire (and thus the ascendency of our truly insane into positions of power). But the fun couldn’t last forever. And one can’t really blame the coffee. Tea didn’t save that upon which the sun never set.

      • guygodbois00 says:

        “The faux Native Americans dumped their tea bags and lo! the ocean was boiling with tea…” – Boston Tea Party -goer

      • Echo_Hotel says:

        So what you are saying is that a Country’s power over it’s territories is based on their choice of chemical stimulants?

        Viva Colombia! May the sun never set on her 10,000 year Empire!

      • mrcalhou says:

        I daresay that this particular Yank quite enjoys a good Earl Grey in the evening.

  7. squareking says:

    Based on my research, Dungeons of Dredmor was easily more brillo than an entire Brillo factory. Might want to correct that.

  8. Lemming says:

    It looks like a fun game, but I can’t get passed that art direction. A missed opportunity for something unique if not more characterful there, rather than ‘my first 3d model’. I’m sure someone’s going to argue how it’s deliberately bad in some kind of post-modern way, but that doesn’t really work for 3D.

  9. Shooop says:

    Lots of ambition, but can they pull it off?

    I hope so. Lovecraft and gallows humor are two things the game industry can never have enough of.

  10. Gap Gen says:





    • dE says:

      “Engaging Piston, hammering away, sir!”
      “Requiring additional Lubricant.”
      “Strapped on and ready to go.”
      “Hehehe, something is leaking. [Pause] Yep, that’s a spill.”
      “Can’t get enough of these Cogs.”
      “O! That’s what the ring is supposed to do”
      “This just went bump in all the right ways.”

      • Drakedude says:

        That last line, right there, deserves to be stolen by most of creation.

  11. guygodbois00 says:

    “Zombies, crikey! I better get my trusty, bayonet-rifle.”
    “And I’ll get me brew”

  12. Alphadrop says:

    Chap with the tentacles, five rounds rapid.