Clockwork Empires [official site], the Lovecraftian colony management game from the creators of Dungeons of Dredmor, has been swelling like a fungal bloom in the cellar of Early Access. Today, it's ready to emerge. It's the kind of game I'm surprised to realise I haven't already spent fifty hours playing but I haven't touched it at all yet. This weekend looks like the right time to visit the damp, diseased frontier of a clockwork kingdom. Yes. My Halloween game shall be a management sim this year.
Eldritch horrors assaulting a community of hapless settlers? Despair and grief that can drive those afflicted settlers to experiments in the occult? Steam knights? RimWorld-like emergent stories in an offbeat town management game? I'm quite excited by all of this, even if I can't quite tell whether it's going to be more The Sims: Dunwich Life or Theme Innsmouth.
The last major update had a fascinating mix of major additions:
implemented an Office Supply system to replace the upkeep system
added biome unlocking
redid guns & ammo (pew pew)
added madness and enraged states
and made enormous improvements to UI all over the place
The leap from "an Office Supply system" to "madness and enraged states" seems like a fairly sizable one, until I cast my mind back to the years I actually worked in an office. I barely left my enraged state for one entire year.
One reason I've avoided the game until now is that people I know who played told me again and again that it didn't seem ready, with expected features either missing or unbalanced. I'm hoping the exit from Early Access is well-timed and that a few more months in the cellar weren't needed to achieve finest fungal fettle.