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Thursday, August 3, 2000

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6:00 AM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

Gamecenter has posted a short preview and screen shot gallery of Tropico, an upcoming sim from PopTop Software and Gathering of Developers. In this unique approach to the simulated-city genre, you will take the role as dictator of a Third World country which just happens to be an island in the Caribbean. Spare the rod and spoil your citizens, or weed out the capitalist pig-dogs and crush them under your iron heel -- it is your choice.

This game is built with a modified form of the engine from Railroad Tycoon II, a pseudo-3D overhead view with crisp detail. As shown in the screen shots, Tropico will feature a wide variety of architecture, from Spanish mission-style churches to the common gas station. Here's an excerpt from the preview with more details on gameplay:

Tropico will combine the strategic building and management you saw in Poptop's first game, Railroad Tycoon II, with a slightly tongue-in-cheek mix of Latin American politics. As ruler, you will have to appease various internal political factions. You may even have to worry about resistance fighters in the hills. You'll control an army to help fend off those rebels in the hills, but you need to keep your officers happy, or you might see them join up with the rebels. On the other hand, if you tilt too far towards the army, the Church will be unhappy with you and start spreading dissent through the people. And don't forget about your economy. Unemployment and low wages will cause the ranks of the rebels to swell. And, to top it off, you have both the U.S. and the Soviet Union interested in your internal affairs, and you can't make both happy.
The Soviet Union? Obviously the setting is before the fall of the Evil Empire. In any case, if you are interested in this curious take on the Sim genre, be sure and check out the preview and screen shots. Tropico is due for Mac and PC in early 2001.

Tropico Preview at Gamecenter
Review of Railroad Tycoon II: The Second Century
PopTop Software
Buy Tropico

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