Kalypso has announced a new city building simulator, although this one has a twist. Urban Empire focuses as much on the political aspects of running a city as the strategic planning, over the course of 200 years.
Players take on the role of a Mayor of a city, where they must "stablish infrastructures, plan city districts, debate political decisions at the town council, bribe or blackmail your opponents, empower the democratic rights of your people or ignore them and reign supremely by yourself."
If that sounds familiar, it does seem like the game is "Tropico set in a Western town," but according to Kalypso, the gameplay is completely different from Tropico. Players choose from four ruling families with five individual characters from each family. Families include the Kilgannons, who champion equal rights and social justice, and the Sant’Elias, an intellectual family that pursues scientific progress.
The game starts in the 1820s and visits five different eras of history. The timeline features up to 800 dynamic events that force the gamer into making hard decisions. Events include things like women’s rights, the hippie movement, and child labor.
Urban Empire will be released later this year on PC, and is making its debut at the Game Developers Conference this weekend in San Francisco. Gamers can visit the Steam Store page.