I’ve only played a bit of the Tropico series in the past. It’s a city-builder type game that sees you play as an appointed dictator in a banana republic, making an island paradise for your citizens and tourists, while still passing enough back to the people who appointed you – or the revolutionaries on the island.
Right from the get-go, I was really impressed with Tropico 6. I know Kalypso aren’t a one man band kind of company, but even so, I was surprised just how great Tropico 6 looks. The opening cutscene was extremely well rendered, funny and with an excellent voice over and soundtrack. The actual in-game is mirrored in this as well, you can zoom in close and follow your citizens around, and at every zoom level, the game looks good. The in-game soundtrack is average at best, but the voice over lines are delivered extremely well and, although they do grate after a little while, they’re overall very well done.
As opposed to other city builders where you’re given a small scenario or a blank page as requirements, Tropico 6 comes with a campaign. Or at least, many scenario missions to accomplish. These all give you something to aim for, some reason to continue building and also introduces you to different functionality and buildings. There are plenty of different quests to complete as well, with various people coming to you and asking – or sometimes ordering – you to perform tasks for them to help their cause or trade with them. There are a significant amount of features to dabble with as well, so it is easy to lose yourself and spend hours upon hours in the game.
The other positive with having the lengthy campaign, is that it was so easy for me to get to grips with the game. There are five tutorial missions as well, to further enhance the ability to start the game and know exactly what to do. For me, this was everything. I have had a few games lately where it was obtuse to get to grips with, or I needed to play previous games in order to fully ‘get’ everything. But here, it’s bliss. I was able to start up the game, play through the tutorials – which are fun in themselves – and just crack on with the game. Within an hour or two I was up and running, ploughing my way through all of the campaign missions in front of me.
I gave the game a hefty amount of time, and I only ever found one quibble really. It’s pretty minor as well, but for those of us who are very keen on the attention to detail front, it can get pretty annoying. It’s all about the road placement. Generally, it’s not too bad, but it doesn’t quite go from square to square, and occasionally tries to smooth it out with gentle curves where it can. The only issue with this is that sometimes it thinks you want a crooked road when really all you want is a tiny straight bit. So instead of your island being wonderfully, perfectly crafted, you get a mostly good settlement with some absolutely nutty roads that look horribly out of place.
The Final Word
Aside from the minor criticism about the road placement, there is no reason to not want to play Tropico 6. It’s a fine game with some supremely nice touches. The campaign mode, all of the quests you get in it, and the wonderful humour all add up to a top notch game. It’s well worth the price and I can see myself spending many an hour trying to create an island paradise.