Fantasy Town Regional Manager

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Fantasy Town Regional Manager


Ye Olde City Builder

EA SCOUT the last line of defense for buying on Steam's Early Access

Ye Olde City Builder

I have always enjoyed city building games. I love watching as my city begins from a single building or resident and then slowly but gradually grows into a bustling metropolis. Fantasy Town Regional Manager has players doing the same, but with a Dungeons and Dragons type theme, as the goal is to recruit as many adventurers as possible before the threat hanging over the town takes hold.

Adventurers come in the form of five different types – Brawlers, Outriders, Performers, Diviners and Arcanists and will be attracted to your town by constructing specific buildings. Starting with one hundred gold coins, players must choose between one of three randomized cards each depicting one of the numerous buildings available for construction. Each building has a price, and several modifiers which will either increase the influx of gold to your city, help to increase adventurers or house and feed those adventurers.

In a turn-based style with each turn representing one day, players will spend their funds and then place their desired building within the small patch of bare ground surrounding their guild hall. Once all the funds have been spent and buildings placed accordingly players will elect to start a new turn. Each new turn begins with the daily newspaper which has the current news including any new adventurers migrating to your town or any new threats to the town. Often, there will be interactive options, such as whether to purchase items from a wandering merchant or whether to attack an intruding ogre. These options will all have consequences or advantages, such as increasing gold for several turns, increasing your towns populace, or increasing the threat.

In essence, the goal of the game is to keep the influx of adventurers to your town above the level of threats from nearby fantasy monsters. Choosing which building to construct at the right time can be a tricky thing though. It is all well and good erecting structures that will entice adventurers, but players will also need to be able to feed and house them as well as make enough gold to keep expanding the town. The other issue that players need to take note of is the randomness of the cards. Every turn there are three cards that are drawn from a deck and players can inly build a structure from these options. However, after selecting one card, a new card takes its place and players can keep purchasing until they run out of gold or decide not to spend anymore. Saving funds for the next time your required card appears can be a valid strategy. As players progress and the town’s population grows, they’ll start earning larger amounts of gold. This is somewhat cancelled out by the fact that with each iteration of a particular building, the cost increases.

It is not just the buildings that cost gold in Fantasy Town Regional Manager. It won’t take long for players to take up all the available vacant land, so players will have to resort to clearing the surrounding forests to open up space. Unfortunately, clearing the land can be quite expensive – maybe the lack of lumberjacks amongst the adventurers is the reason – but either way, expansion can’t occur if there is no vacant land.

What is a fantasy game without quests?

Every few turns, an Adventurer quest will appear. These quests can have some great rewards, but unfortunately will temporarily reduce the adventurers currently residing in your town. Send too many on quests and there may not be enough to control the threats to the town. The quests can reward the player with new cards (representing new buildings) or clearing a portion of land for free. There is quite a bit of risk/reward in these tasks, and I found it best to ensure there is a minimal threat before heading out on a quest.

Eventually, the threat to the town becomes too great for the population of adventurers to handle and the game will come to an end. But that does mean that you can’t start again. And starting again brings with it all the bonuses that you’ve collected in previous towns.

There is also an RPG element to Fantasy Town Regional Manager. Completing objectives for each type of adventurer will grant Reward points or tokens for each faction. These tokens can then be used to spend on abilities for each of those adventurer types. Abilities can include starting the game with a higher satisfaction rating, decreasing the base cost of quests, or even increasing the output from food and gold producing buildings. The bonus of this is that each ability you unlock will remain for future games – essentially giving players a much-needed boost at the start of their next game.

A slow build

In its current state, Fantasy Town Regional Manager is a fun game that has a bit of a slow build (pun fully intended). You’ll play through a couple of times and your town will be overrun fairly quickly. But as you play through the game again and again, the bonuses collected will enable you to get off to a healthier start each time. It is very simple to play, with the turn-based system allowing players to play at their own pace. The cartoonish visuals will appeal to all, and I particularly enjoyed how the change of seasons are represented. All the important details are well laid out and players will easily be able to ascertain their current predicament. Fantasy Town Regional Manager is also full of fantasy tropes, especially within the daily news. If you decide to give this game a run during Early Access, I encourage you to have a read, as you’re sure to have a chuckle to yourself.


There are no guarantees - but we'd bet our own money on this one. If you're going to take a chance with yours, odds are good this one will deliver.

Hooked Gamer's Steam Early Access forecasts are intended to help you differentiate between Early Access games that have the potential to blossom and those more likely to fail. We look at the team's ambitions, their track record, and the state of the latest build to predict if opening your wallet will help fund a potentially great game, or is better used to light other fires.