Megalopolis is a Sim City style game where you manage a virtual island in a series of scenarios. The aim of the game is to build housing for your residents, providing them with water and power sources which increases the population thus earning you money. Power sources are a strong feature of this game, it follows an environmental theme in which you must decide between clean and dirty sources. Clean sources such as wind power do not pollute the atmosphere but they provide power to fewer zones, while dirty power such as coal covers a larger number of zones but it is more harmful to the environment. Unused zones can attract slums and dump sites which cost you money and increase the pollution. Too much pollution will cause environmental disasters such as forest fires or in the worst case mass flooding which can wipe out your city in seconds.
Presentation is excellent and the graphics are very well drawn and suit the game, it reminds me of a cross between Sim City and Civilization. Each building type is clearly definable with smoke bellowing out of factories chimneys and lights in housing to show the occupancy level. The music is relaxing and works well with the pace of the game, there are not many sound effects but these include a robotic voice which repeats your commands when performing actions or to explain if you do not have enough money.
The user interface is clear and easy to read and shows your money, population and the all important CO2 meter and time countdown. Building options are chosen via a radial menu controlled by the right analogue stick. It mostly works well, but you can occasionally find yourself selecting the wrong building type when in a rush or not fully paying attention.
There are in total ten scenarios, seven main and three bonus, which can be played in Story and unlocked for the Free Mode as you progress. There is also a very useful in game tutorial which I recommend you go through first as it explains how to play the game and what the positives and negatives of building types are. Each scenario lasts for ten minutes of real time which equates to ten years of in-game time.
The Story Mode follows a basic story where at the start of each scenario you are told a part of the story and that you have new building types at your disposal, but there are no clear main objectives despite the bonus objectives being clearly described. You will spend the first couple of games getting to grips with how it all works, it should then start clicking into place as you learn to better manage your planning of buildings, making the choice between clean or dirty power and if you should bulldoze some trees to earn some quick money and run the risk of high pollution. With bad planing you can often find unused zones being overrun with slums at a fast rate, I think the frequency of this is a bit too high and if you do not pay attention you can almost get stuck in a loop deleting one as another pops up.
The lack of objectives can enable you to breeze through the entire game in a couple of hours. By the time you have reached the final scenario, all the building types will unlock but you only get to use them all in their entirety in this final scenario. You are left wondering what is the point of them as you have not really required them until the final scenario. You can however replay the scenarios with all buildings unlocked in the Free Mode and try to improve your scores for each level which are saved to the local leaderboard. Each scenario does feel very similar and it may get repetitive for some. More scenarios or clearer level objectives that must be met in order to complete the scenario would make this more of a challenge and enjoyable game.
The game, despite it’s few problems is still fun to play and I did enjoy playing it. If you like playing management sims but do not want to get bogged down with micro management then this is the ideal game for you. With the ten minute game time, it falls in the quick play game category if you are pressed for time. It also has a good positive environmental theme which if this game does nothing else, it will help you understand more about the environment. At 400 there is just enough to warrant the price but by the end of the game you may be left wanting more.
Here is your chance to win a token for a free copy of Megalopolis. To enter all you need to do is download the trial of Megalopolis and tell me:
What is the name of the second level on the Free Mode of Megalopolis? (The first level you can play in the trial)
- NOTE: The first level is unavailable to play in story mode, it is the second level that you can play in the trial, so the question has been changed to clarify this. I have checked all the current entries and all are correct, so if you previously answered the original question your answer is correct it will still be valid and accepted into the draw. Apologies for the confusion.
Once you know the answer, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject name ‘Megalopolis Token Giveaway’ and your name and answer to the question in the message body.
The deadline to submit your entry is Friday 28th August at 23:59:59 BST, only one entry per person please! Anyone may enter but please remember the token may not be redeemable if Indie Games are not available in your country. The winner will be decided at random from correct entries and notified by email shortly after the deadline. Good luck!