After crafting viruses to wipe out humanity in Plague Inc, the next strat-o-sim from developers Ndemic Creations will give us a trickier task: restore a war-torn region. Rebel Inc: Escalation will have us restore infrastructure and build civil programs, vie for public support, engage in military action against insurgents, and try not to muck it all up. Ndemic say it's inspired by events in Afghanistan, which raises some moral questions. Following its debut on pocket telephones last year, Rebel Inc is now headed to PC and soon - this month.
We'll take control as one of six classes of governor, folks with different abilities and focuses from a mundane civil servant to more focused ones like a general or black market operator. There we are, trying to get the country under control while insurgents are fighting against that. A tricky balance of social policy, investment, public perception, military action, and more, with different forces pushing and pulling and upsetting each other. As ongoing global events show, it's a colossal task.
Ndemic say the simulation underpinning this is inspired by events in Afghanistan, and contains "real world development initiatives and an innovative representation of counter insurgency tactics." That does give me pause, considering the immoral and counterproductive invasion which started that, but the game is abstracted from that situation.
"Although a fictional game, Rebel Inc. looks at important real world issues and we have made every effort to deal with them sensitively," Ndemic claim. "The game has been extensively researched and has been developed in cooperation with leading regional politicians, business people and journalists as well as international charities, experts and governments."
It's certainly a situation less clear-cut than Plague Inc, where we can all agree that a 12 Monkeys-style purging of humanity is the only moral action.
Rebel Inc: Escalation is coming to Steam Early Access at some point in October, priced at $15. They expect to launch it in full by the end of 2020, having added newness including more regions, more governors, a campaign mode, cooperative and competitive multiplayer, daily challenges, and a scenario editor with Steam Workshop support.