That was quick. When city-builder-specialists Tilted Mill recently revealed they were pursuing a Direct-selling digital downloads model we presumed it'd be a while before we saw anything other than a remix of Children of the Nile. We were wrong. Hinterland, their first game, is apparently going to be available before the end of Summer. Which will be going some, as looking out the window into rainy England, it appears that Summer is already over. Still - from the details that they've teased out, it's sounding like some kind of compelling cross between a Roguelike and Dwarf Fortress. Which is going to provoke a woo. Woo!
While there's a trickle of information on their site, you'll be best directing your eyes to Tom Chick's interview with the guys. Reading between the lines, it seems to be pursuing a more intimate image of what a heroic adventure could be. Set around a single village, you play the general organiser and hero, getting a party to come with you and leave their ploughshares behind and adventure, while all the while the village keeps on ticking over. All of which reminds me of a serious attempt to do almost Seven-Samurai style initimate environment - and that Loot, Level and Build tagline kind of hints at a sort of missing link in the questing game. In the same way Depth of Peril's increased attention to the village rejuvenated the game, this is absolutely brimming with potential.
I'm excited, in short. Random generation. Intimate scale. Low-magic. Refocusing in the fantasy genre to lead to novel interactions. The word "Hinterlands". This couldn't be any more my sort of thing if the characters all kept on pricing up Skaven Army lists while listening to Orange Juice records.