This is unfortunately a huge disappointment and it's so sad that I feel this way because the graphics and the setting could have made for something really special.

But this is unfortunately not only a waiting game but also a puzzle game and has almost no bones of being a city builder at all. You're not doing any resource pipelines a la Anno but mostly simply waiting for your drones to shuffle the 3 resources around. They give you the option of building factory layouts inside buildings but the larger buildings with much more space for citizens and offices that generate way more money make that utterly obsolete and your factories end up being exclusively to process resources within the first few hours. The campaign requires that you achieve victory on the first map to progress at all and this is one of the most tedious things I've ever done in a game with requirements like "hold X amount of artifacts" which are utterly banal. Research is exclusively all percentage changes to things like waste generated or area covered and all buildings are simply unlocked with money. There's so much they could have done here but instead they chose to add some incredibly lacklustre combat that absolutely does not work. You're not building a city so much as just plopping one of 10 buildings and trying to "combine" adjacent buildings to make for one slightly more efficient building. There's completely pointless mechanics like "burrowing" with dedicated research which baffles me. Instead of a sprawling metropolis you're slowly plopping mostly single tile banal structures. Even the area you're allocated at the start is so restrictive and tedious to work around and it takes a lot of waiting before you can expand. Even the resource management is tedious with tiered resources. Sometimes you might end up with only the higher tier of minerals which means you're wasting almost 25 construction units for a waste bin that takes 2.

It's so unfortunate how this shaped out. I cannot believe how hard the developers dropped the ball here. I'd bought this on early access and THREE years later it has not changed for the better.

Reviewed on Feb 07, 2023