Civilization-builder The Settlers is coming to Nintendo DS this fall, which will be the first time in the series' 13-year history that it has appeared on any format other than PC.
The game has you controlling a group of Roman explorers attempting to survive and set up a civilization on a deserted island. In order to do this the right balance of skill and know-how is required. For instance, builders are needed for construction while scouts are required to find supplies.
Then it is a case of establishing suitable living conditions before creating a firm economic base, with farming and mining a very important aspect. Once this is done, thoughts must turn to defending all your good work, so developing an army is essential.
Above: You can swap around what is shown on each screen
The game is being developed by Blue Byte, which is keen to exploit DS's unique features. So, on the touch-screen, gamers will be able to use the stylus to organize operations while watching the settlers go about their business on the top screen. These views can then be swapped depending on how you want to control the game.
Two campaigns are included, Roman and World, which take place in a gaming world made up of seven continents and populated by four different races - Roman, Viking, Nubian and Asian.
Games such as Advance Wars have proved there is an audience for simple but addictive strategy on the handheld and The Settlers has a good chance of proving very successful, particularly as it has always had a firm following on PC.
June 13, 2006