Neptune's Pride 2: 64-player game mode being tested in preparation for public release
I'm not sure how I feel about getting emails from Neptune's Pride. Dirty, I guess? It was a game responsible for some pretty reprehensible behaviour, as part of a month-long campaign of stress, plotting and backstabbing. After it was over, I swore never to play it again. Then Neptune's Pride 2: Triton appeared, so naturally I played it again. Now it's emailing me, seemingly for no reason other reason than to taunt me with a reminder of its existence, and to reveal that its developers are testing out 64-player games of mammoth machination and mental manoeuvring.
This first test game is part of the preamble that will eventually lead to Iron Helmet rolling out a publicly available 64-player mode. It sounds like a perfectly pleasant way to spend some time, especially if you a) have 64 friends, b) want to lose all of them at once. That said, one of Triton's main features is a turn-based option, meaning you can at least ration your scheming into manageable chunks.
If you've not played Neptune's Pride, it's a simple board-game like strategy that, in its main mode, runs in real time. Sending ships, issuing orders, and queueing research takes hours to complete, ensuring that games can go on for weeks, or even months. But its battle system is easily understood, which shifts the majority of your time to the diplomacy screen, where you can plot with fellow players to make and break alliances.
You can take a peek at the 64 player game now, by following its link. The information you can discern from it is light - so as not to give its players any information - but you can get a feel for the immensity of such a campaign.
As yet, there's no release date for the 64-player mode. You should know when it's out, though, because you'll be able to hear my mournful screams.