Anticipated indie hit Manor Lords is everyone’s most wanted Steam game, so it’s a good job it’s coming to Game Pass

1 month ago 58

All eyes are on Hooded Horse and Slavic Magic’s highly anticipated historical city building game, Manor Lords, just days before it launches.

Manor Lords key art - a soldier rides a horse – looking at the Game Pass logo. Image credit: VG247

Why is everyone so interested in Manor Lords? The game, an ambitious city builder/RTS hybrid, attempts to simulate how medieval towns were constructed by embracing organic layouts and doing away with the grid systems common in the genre. And, today, it hit 3 million wishlists on Steam – that's no mean feat. It's currently above even Hades 2. That's impressive.

Its trailers have been attractive, interesting, and intriguing – but there's something else to the game's rampant success. It's 2022 demo managed to persuade half a million people to wishlist the title alone, and since then that base of interest has swelled even more.

I think it has something to do with the high degree of historical authenticity, and the pleasing rags-to-riches premise that the whole thing is built around. Right now, in today's world, social mobility feels a bit stuck – and we all feel a bit hemmed into whatever monetary situation we're in. Manor Lords gives us a fantasy in which we can own land – imagine that! – and lift ourselves out of serfdom.

A row of soldiers stand with their spears and shields raised in Manor Lords. Brace! | Image credit: VG247

Going from a bustling little village into a complicated, intricate city with its own financical ecosystem and production chain feels like Factorio, circa 1379. Albeit with more war, and a need to keep at least one eye on your neighbouring duchies, lest they try and wrest control of your blossoming kingdom away from you.

“Slavic Magic has done amazing work,” says Hooded Horse CEO Tim Bender in a statement shared with VG247. “We’re honored and glad to be his publisher and help him realize his dream.”

The game is no doubt going to be a huge hit on Steam, but if you don't fancy parting with about $25-$30 at launch, there's another option. Manor Lords will release into early access for PC on April 26, 2024 via Steam, GOG, Epic Games Store, where you will be able to buy it, sure, but it will also be available day one on PC Game Pass via Game Preview. This is a nice inexpensive way of seeing f the game is for you – especially if you get a free trial via the link at the bottom of this page.

We wrote about the game way back in the hinterlands of 2020, where Sherif noted that it looked promising... though expressed doubts that Slavic Magic would pull off the Total War-style complex simulation on a smaller scale. Turns out we had nothing to worry about; the early access version of the game was a winner, and it looks like the final release is also going to be something special.

Three million people can't be wrong... can they?

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