The Colonists Review
The Colonists have finally landed in the best not-Settlers-Settlers game in years.
For those of you old enough to remember The Settlers, played by this reviewer on an Amiga, you’ll remember it did an amazing job of making being efficient a fun game.
There have been a number of The Settlers games, each moving further away from the original genius template than the previous.
The Colonists takes the originals brilliant formula and wraps it in a cute robotic shell. You start each game with your ship landing. The ship has limited resources so you need to build some basic structures (e.g. wood cutters, surface stone mines) quickly to start to gather additional resources to expand.
You build out roads that have pin checkpoints between which resources are transported by worker bots.
Although the aim of the missions differs, the underlying way to win the level is to ensure you have an efficiently running colony.
The little robots shuttling goods about appear to have unlimited power and will work without interruption. For heavier jobs you’ll need to provide batteries, these are generated by housing via a curious mixture of food and water.
It’s a beautiful game to watch, you can speed up gameplay but it’s very enjoyable to just watching the little ‘bots go about their tasks.
The Settlers did have an element of combat, if your boarders were next to an AI player you could send your troops over to try and conquer watch towers, if successful you took over the AI’s land. The same principle is present in The Colonists, you can attack the AI watch tower and take it over.
In these combat missions it’s vital to have an efficient running colony, you need to get repair materials to the front lines to ensure you don’t loose to an attack, you also need to be quickly researching advanced technology to give your towers the upper hand. Unfortunately this does mean these missions take very little time to complete, they key being to expand at the AI quickly and research the arrow tech. If you get next to the AI with arrows before they have them you’ve walk all over them in no time at all.
The amazing thing about The Settlers was that even the action was heavily reliant on getting the right resources from point A to point B. The Colonists manages to replicate this and if you get the setup wrong you’ll want to start the entire level again to make sure efficiency is king.
If you loved The Settlers you’ll love The Colonists, it’s the same template updated with a sci fi twist and lovely graphics. If you’re new to this sort of game you’ll find it refreshingly different from the usual strategy games that focus on building an army with resource management a secondary thought. Hopefully in time additional modes and content will be released as there aren’t many campaign missions to work through at the time of launch.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve a new land to colonize!