So, spoilers: I really like this game. I enjoy most games in the ‘management’ ‘city-builder’ ‘culture survival simulator’ genre. Games like Dwarf Fortress, From Dust, SimCity and now the new Banished which our dear Logiz passed my way to give a try. Gnomoria is the sort of game that can keep me hyper-focused for hours until my eyes burn and my neck is stiff… And that’s a good thing, isn’t it?
Survival is the name of the game in Gnomoria and at first it seems simple enough. Plant some food here, chop some wood there, build some nice things, and mine for pretty and useful stuff. That is, for the first in game year…but after that, it becomes a good bit harder. Now you have to focus on your squads, your military. They need to be equipped with good weapons and armor and have received plenty of training so they can survive the threats to come. Goblins, Skeletons, and Pinky the Murderer are all just off the edge of the map or hiding the darkness of your mining tunnels, ready to come seeking the blood of your gnomes and their treasures too. In fact, after 14 hours of playing, I’ve not successfully made it past year 1.
The game takes place on a map of which you can determine the size prior to starting the game. You have dozens of levels going up and down to explore, but during the exploring be careful you don’t get caught out alone when enemies appear on the map, or that one Gnome you named Logiz won’t last long… Sorry Logiz.
The resources on the map are straight forward. Strawberries and oranges make wine, you can grow wheat for bread, mushrooms for stew, and cotton for fabric. You can build farms underground and outside, and groves of trees for food and wood. There’s around two dozen workshops that can craft hundreds of in game items and more are expected to be added to the game. Of course, crafting is a huge part of the game and not something I’ve gotten deeply into yet. You can build out of almost any material, soil, rock, solid metal blocks and more to create your walls, stairs, and ramps. There’s even a scaffolding block I’ve not had a try at using, but I would assume it’ll allow me to build bigger walls without having to create stairways leading up the sides.
The music is okay, but it’s nothing to rave about. I switched it from Classic to Orchestral, and that helped. Overtime, I find the classic soundtrack to get a little grating… but most things would, after hearing them for a few hours. While changing the sound settings I spotted the gameplay tab where you can even control how far your Gnomes will travel for nourishment–should they grab what’s closest or what’s best?
All in all, if you like management games anywhere near as much as I do, you can’t go wrong with Gnomoria.
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