Joining in the tradition of the old Transport Tycoon, Industry Tycoon, Traffic Manager, Transport Giant, etc series of games, Oligopoly: Industrial Revolution is a strategy game of industrial management.
Oligopoly: Industrial Revolution, which is being developed by Viny Game Studio is a complex strategy title of production, transportation and trading. From farms to infrastructure, your goal is to build a thriving economy on what will eventually be a variety of maps, through an assortment of winning conditions.
Even at this early stage, Oligopoly is both complicated and fun to play. Being a huge fan of these types of simulations, I have already experienced rushing to expand too quickly — and then going broke. I can see that I have my work cut out for me.
Something great about Oligopoly is the overlay for products. Sure, most in this genre have specified iron, coal, copper, etc. deposits… which makes sense. However, all products have certain areas where they thrive or where they’d be a total dud. It’s not simply a matter of ‘I want to grow wheat here…’ because you have to look at the overall picture — for every product.
For example, if milk is limited to a couple of certain, smaller areas around the two cities you are hoping to connect, you can jam yourself up very quickly if you build meat and egg farms in ‘milk’s area’. Planning ahead makes a huge difference in Oligopoly. If you just start plopping farms down without regard to where they’ll benefit the most, you will find yourself frequently starting over.
Of course, you can take raw products and combine them by using factories. Again, watch the factory placement so you’re not taking away a product’s area. So far, Oligopoly doesn’t make it easy to produce higher earning, more complicated products either. Say you want to make a burger. Although the bread and meat may be close, the tomatoes are far across the board. It’s like that with all the factory products. It’s not going to give you the chance to easily become a billionaire — which is the first of the easier scenarios.
Actually, it’s the only easy one at this time. There’s one hard scenario right now which is ‘Silicon Valley’. Then, there are four sandbox maps. However, they are all infinite money without any goals or restrictions — something I personally have no interest in, but it might appeal to some people.
Again, it’s already enjoyable to play. It’s still fairly early in development. I will do a proper review once Oligopoly is released. I can’t wait to see what all they have in store (pun intended).
Oligopoly was reviewed with EA Patch #10, although I know EA Patch #11 is close to release. I didn’t see an actual build number anywhere. It is available now on PC & Linux.