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Streets of Fortuna is a chaotic The Sims-like in an ambitious open-world city sandbox, made with the help of Dwarf Fortress creators

Steal, cook, trade, assassinate - or just romance everyone you meet

Trading goods as a smuggler in open-world megasim Streets of Fortuna
Image credit: Kitfox Games

For me, sandbox games are never better when there’s an inherent chaos about to erupt at any given second. In a literal sandbox that might be anything from a kid burying a freshly-laid turd like a mischievous cat ready to be stepped on by an unsuspecting trespasser, gathering handfuls of grit to lob in a another kids’ eyes or swallowing a bunch of sand (hopefully turd-free) in pursuit of alchemising diamonds in their stomach. There don’t seem to be turds of any kind in upcoming sandbox RPG Streets of Fortuna, but that’s about the only thing that this ambitious “megasim” appears to be missing in its sprawling go-anywhere, do-anything open world.

Streets of Fortuna sets the player loose into an original historical-ish city inspired by Constantinople around 500 AD. After that, it’s up to the player what they do - there’s no class or job system to speak of, a la The Sims, but you can improve in specific individual skills that might help you become, say, a blacksmith, or cook, or trader, or priest, or thief. Or instead of seeking a vocation or crafting goods, you could simply try to shag your way around the city or do whatever else you need to do to survive on the streets as a penniless nobody.

Reacting to your hijinks will be a procedurally-generated city full of a thousand individually simulated citizens and communities, whether they’re guards ready to chase you down if you’re caught nicking goods, potential customers to ply your wares - however legal - to, or targets for you to woo with romance or assassinate as you see fit. That might even include the city’s ruling Overlord, if you can find a way to try and take over the city yourself.

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If a ridiculously detailed world created with procedural generation simulating the lives of hundreds of people sounds a bit like Dwarf Fortress, there’s a good reason. Developer-publishers Kitfox Games previously brought Dwarf Fortress to Steam and, and tapped up co-creator Tarn Adams at Bay 12 to help design, polish and playtest their own ambitious sim game.

Kitfox say the vibe is “emergent chaos” and seeing stories play out as the world reacts to your various actions, which sounds like plenty for me to lose dozens of hours to given the plethora of possibilities seemingly on offer.

Revealed over the weekend during the PC Gaming Show, Streets of Fortuna has already been in development for two years, but Kitfox say there’s a “lot” left to do before it’s released on Steam - with no release date yet. Beyond that, the devs have plans for regular updates on top of the basic framework to delve even deeper into elements of the fictional world, such as politics, going beyond the “default” player experience of surviving on the streets as a thief.

The flurry of summer games events are now underway! Hit up our Summer Game Fest 2024 hub and our Day Of The Devs roundup for all the news worth caring about from the shows so far.

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