Games Where You Build a City

Of the Tabletop, and other, lesser varieties.

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Serrin
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Games Where You Build a City

Postby Serrin » Sun May 22, 2011 1:44 pm UTC

Call me crazy, or OCD or something, but I have an intense fascination where you build cities in an RPG type manner. To be abundantly clear, I'm not talking about Sim City, or Black and White, or Minecraft, or Starcraft. It's not just games where you build cities, but games where the cities you build have some soul to them. Examples of games in this category include Breath of Fire 2, Tecmo's Secret of the Stars, one of the Suikodens, Terraria(?!), Dark Cloud (or so I hear), Soulblazer and (and how I loved it).

Looking over the list, I see a whole ton of SNES and early console games, and nothing recent. Part of this may simply be the narrowing of genres, but I suspect a lot of it is the fact that my gaming tastes have broadened over time, and I can no longer claim to have played every RPG ever. So, does anyone else share my bizarre fixation? Are there any games from the last decade or so I should be playing? Anyone just want to spaz out over how awesome Soulblazer was half a lifetime ago?

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Swivelguy
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Swivelguy » Sun May 22, 2011 2:10 pm UTC

I played dark cloud 2, it's a pretty decent game overall.

The cities you build in that (really more like villages) are made from prefab parts, like blocks and trees and fence-segments, and have to meet certain requirements (eg. "a fence runs from the well to the town hall"). It's not particularly challenging to meet those requirements, and you'll have plenty of parts left over to improvise and make it pretty. I will admit that I recall spending considerable time doing this for no real purpose.

The town-building is a pretty small part of the game, and once you build them, you don't really do much with them. Other parts of the game include grinding experience, doing a sort of alchemy on your weapons, and playing golf.
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby EmptySet » Mon May 23, 2011 3:10 am UTC

You can kinda build the town of Raven Rock in Bloodmoon, the expansion to Morrowind. I say "kinda" because there isn't a huge amount of choice involved... there are just a couple of options like "Should we have a blacksmith or a general store?" and other than that the town gets built piece by piece as you do the appropriate quests.

I'm pretty sure Skies of Arcadia, on the Dreamcast and Gamecube, also let you build your own town and populate it with people you recruited. But it's a little hard to find these days.

Tales of Symphonia lets you gradually rebuild and then improve a destroyed city as a late-game money sink, but there's no choices or anything. You just dump all your spare cash on it until it's done.

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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon May 23, 2011 3:12 am UTC

Actraiser is the most prominent example of this I can think of.
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Eseell
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Eseell » Mon May 23, 2011 3:53 am UTC

I really liked Dark Cloud and Dark Cloud 2. The city building was a neat part of both games. White Knight Chronicles, also by Level 5, had some city building but the game itself wasn't that good so I only got a few hours into it.
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Dark567 » Mon May 23, 2011 4:26 am UTC

Eseell wrote:I really liked Dark Cloud and Dark Cloud 2.

I forgot all about those games.... and the fact you build cities in them.

I really wish I had a working PS2 now so I could go back and play. Damn PS3's lack of backward compatibility.
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Faithful
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Faithful » Mon May 23, 2011 12:48 pm UTC

Kingdom of Kefflings allows you to build the Keffling's a city. That's the closest I can think of.

That's on the xbox arcade.

It's actually pretty neat. I built my town, realized I didn't like the lack of efficiency, and redid it all. Took hours and was mildly enjoyable.

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Lostdreams
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Lostdreams » Mon May 23, 2011 3:24 pm UTC

Breath of Fire 3 also had town side quests. They weren't in depth though. Mostly it was picking what you wanted the shop to do and who you wanted to do it.

Dark Could 2 was already mentioned but it's worth mentioning again.

Chrono Trigger doesn't have world building per se but the changes you make in the timeline will often cause major changes in the world at later dates. Also it has 13 endings and a "new game plus" option.

Spore revolves around building things from creatures to towns to vehicles.

Dungeon Keeper 1 and 2 is completely underground and you carve out an underground city. The type of rooms you build define which creatures live in your dungeon.

Civilization: pick one.

Animal Crossing is a bit kiddish but is all about building a city/cities.

Little King's Story for Wii. It's like Pikmin but you conquer areas and build a town.
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby MrConor » Tue May 24, 2011 5:01 pm UTC

http://www.fallout3nexus.com/downloads/file.php?id=7070

You may be interested in the Real Time Settler mod for Fallout 3. Here's the trailer. I've never actually played it, but it seems to be the sort of thing you're looking for.

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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby broken_escalator » Tue May 24, 2011 5:48 pm UTC

Lostdreams wrote:Little King's Story for Wii. It's like Pikmin but you conquer areas and build a town.

This was a pretty fun game when I played it.

I love the idea of building cities and defending them, like in black and white or even starcraft. Age of empires and stronghold games were pretty similar too. You're supposed to conquer people but its also really fun to just exist.

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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Xanthir » Tue May 24, 2011 9:15 pm UTC

"My Life As A King" on the wii shop is all about city building. You're a king, and you build a city and send your city's adventurers out to do quests. You don't actually control the adventurers; it's all-king-all-the-time, and you just read about how the adventures went the next day.

I've sunk quite a lot of time into that, and occasionally pick it up again for a couple hours because it's rather fun.
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Dark567 » Tue May 24, 2011 9:23 pm UTC

broken_escalator wrote: ... stronghold games were pretty similar too. You're supposed to conquer people but its also really fun to just exist.

Like this Stronghold

or this one?

Because I really didn't like the former, but really like the latter. Actually the latter is probably very close to what the OP is asking for as its very not Sim City/AoE/Starcraft.

EDIT: Actually for the former I might be remembering Stronghold 2....
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby broken_escalator » Tue May 24, 2011 9:32 pm UTC

Either stronghold really. Just the older one was more city oriented.

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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby SecondTalon » Wed May 25, 2011 2:30 am UTC

Majesty. Majesty was a neat game where you built a generic fantasy town kingdom thing to attract heroes that defend your area from monsters. You couldn't directly control the heroes, but you could set bounties on the monsters in the hopes of persuading them to kill the whatever.
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Dark567 » Wed May 25, 2011 2:34 am UTC

SecondTalon wrote:Majesty. Majesty was a neat game where you built a generic fantasy town kingdom thing to attract heroes that defend your area from monsters. You couldn't directly control the heroes, but you could set bounties on the monsters in the hopes of persuading them to kill the whatever.

Is it worth picking up for $5 on steam? I have never played it.

EDIT: Picked it up... and I probably have to go with not worth it. I can't help but play and think to myself that I would rather be playing something where I actually control the units. The building system just isn't complicated enough to be exciting on its own a la Sim City or Tropico.
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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby New User » Fri May 27, 2011 6:28 am UTC

I never played it but Wurm Online is an MMORPG that's all about crafting and building. Supposedly everything has to be built by players, like bowls and spoons, and even the buildings and roads and stuff. I remember reading that players have to dig out foundations to build into, and build up the city from scratch. It sounded interesting, but I think the last time I checked it was pay-to-play which is why I never played it (I'm quite the cheapskate).

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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby MrConor » Fri May 27, 2011 12:38 pm UTC

New User wrote:I never played it but Wurm Online is an MMORPG that's all about crafting and building. Supposedly everything has to be built by players, like bowls and spoons, and even the buildings and roads and stuff. I remember reading that players have to dig out foundations to build into, and build up the city from scratch. It sounded interesting, but I think the last time I checked it was pay-to-play which is why I never played it (I'm quite the cheapskate).


I believe that Notch of Minecraft fame once worked as a developer for Wurm Online. I'd try it out myself, were it not for the fact I already have Minecraft which fulfils the same creative urges.

EDIT: Whilst looking for more information, I found this thread on the Penny Arcade forums which has a little more information and screenshots. It also says that they have a limited free version; I might try it out just to see what it's like if they do.

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Re: Games Where You Build a City

Postby Gauteamus » Mon May 30, 2011 9:37 am UTC

Dwarf Fortress - www.bay12games.com
Haven and hearth - www.havenandhearth.com

EDIT: I was in a hurry when I posted this, but the urge to post won over the duty to elaborate on my links.

Dwarf Fortress has its own thread, and should hardly need further introduction - you build a mostly underground city populated with Dwarves with Attitude, then let rain all the terrors or SimCity upon your unsuspecting citizens. Preferably volcanic eruptions, Godzilla attacks, and assassinations of nobles simultaneously.

Haven and Hearth is an indie MMO under development.
Some key features:
- heavy investment in character
- permadeath
- open PvP
(a combination that keeps you on the toes in a game that would otherwise be closer to Farmville extended with mining/hunting etc.)
- player transformable, NPC free world
- some innovative (?) mechanics for raising character stats
- crafting oriented economy simulation, with an emphasis on the struggle to move from wilderness survival to civilized village infrastructure.
- player enforced justice, politics, economics etc.
- quite heavy focus on city/community building, though hermiting is still possible
- fairly free terraforming/player influence on the environment
- set in pre-medieval Europe (germanic/slavonic tribal communities)
- horribly lacking in official tutorials/manuals, but with a decent wiki of player documentation

The game is developed by two swedish students, and had a quick pace of development until about a year ago, when the duo was picked up by (or picked up) Paradox Studios as publishers for Salem, the parallell MMO they are making, apparently quite similar in mechanics to Haven and Hearth, but set in early colonial Americk, and in 3D.
While development currently is slow, the developers have expressed intention to continue more active work on H&H after the 2011 release of Salem, possibly backporting portions of the work on this (by the community) despised, if with curiosity awaited cockoo youngling.

The community is influenced by the Laizzes-faire attitude of the developers also in regards to forum moderation, but if you can see beyond the admittedly fair amount of noise, you will find a quite mature group of players who have grown to love a probably unique barock pearl on the young and yet category-lacking reef of MMOs.


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