Strategy Games News Bulletin - November 22nd, 201922 Nov 2019 0
An excellent mix of big and smaller news items this week, capping off a period of plenty of strategy releases to set us up for the holiday period. There’s almost too many to process, so some reviews have had to be pushed back to keep an even pace. That’s not to mention existing favourites getting plenty of updates and new content as well - who’d have thought a niche website looking at strategy games would have TOO much to do?
Meanwhile, thousands of miles away...
Moar Age of Empires 4
Following its announcement last week, further details have been emerging regarding Age of Empires 4. Our friends over at PCGamesN had someone on the ground at XO19 and so were able to ask some questions of the development team:
- There won’t be Microtransactions in AoE4. Instead Microsoft are looking at more traditional expansion content. What that will look like will depend on the community.
- The dev team are exploring with different game modes, so that you can play longer games, but also shorter bite-sized experiences if that’s all you have time for.
This all sounds great in theory, but this is a game with a rather hefty legacy sitting atop its shoulders and it’s been coming for far, far too long. Of course Microsoft will be saying good things about it at this stage. What ends up actually happening, remains to be seen.
New Game: Star Dynasties Announced
One of this week’s more interesting new announcements, Iceberg Interactive announced yesterday that they’re working with Pawley Games to bring a new sci-fi grand strategy game to life - Star Dynasties. It sounds a lot like Crusader Kings in space, with a mixture of empire management and emergent narratives centered around characters and family drama.
The developers have put out an initial dev diary that goes into more details as to what the game is about:
The only downside is, it’s not due out till early 2021. 2021! Why must they tease us so?
Starborne heralds the end of Alpha period with Tournament server
Starborne - the epic MMO empire strategy game - is getting ready to transition out of Alpha into a more complete beta state. To mark the occasion, they’re opening up one final Tournament server, where players can compete to claim a place in the game’s history.
The Tournament server will test players like never before, and will feature unique features such as:
- Specific Entry Requirements
- New Station Building mechanics, as well as the Navy Base being removed from the game
- No access to most of the shop
And more more changes and tweaks. Here’s a rather strange video for you to watch:
The Gears of War XCOM Game is Not Dead
Gears Tactics was announced during E3 2018, and we haven’t heard a peep from it since. If it weren’t for the fact that it’s on our list of upcoming strategy games, we’d have thought we made it up, but no, it’s there… it’s just no-one’s heard anything about it. Until Now!
We’ll be getting another look at the title during The Game Awards on December 12th, according to an official tweet. It’ll be interesting to see what they’ve been doing with the XCOM-but-Gears of War idea over the past couple of years.
Early Black Friday Sales
Some companies are getting the sales in early this year ahead of Black Friday next week. Here’s a few that we’ve spotted:
- Humble’s kicked off their Fall Sale which runs through to December 3rd. A wide range of games old and new are featured, and we’ve spotted a few Strategy items such as Civilization 6: Rise & Fall that might be worth checking out.
- At the same time, if you wanted to get This War of Mine, Frostpunk or any of the Anomaly games cheap, 11 Bit Studios is also having a publisher sale on Humble.
Finally, in celebration of a new game launch this week and the newly announced game above, Iceberg Interactive are having a publisher sale of their own over on Steam just for this weekend. They’re a very ‘try hard’ mid-tier publisher with a wide range of strategy games (especially sci-fi 4X) and while not everything hits the mark, I’m personally glad they exist and are able to keep doing what they do.
And the rest…
A few other minor bits and bobs worth highlighting, while we’re here:
- Age of Wonders: Planetfall’s first expansion launched at the start of the week, called Revelations. Our review will be going live on Monday.
- Prison Architect’s new Psych Ward expansion has also been released.
- Factorio will be releasing from Early Access on September 25th, 2020.
- A beta for digital adaptation of legacy board game Charterstone has been announced, you can sign up here.
That’s all we’ve got for you this week - enjoy your weekends, and we’ll see you Monday.