Anno 1800’s game modes offer unbridled customisation

 Launching April 16th, Anno 1800 is the latest instalment of Ubisoft’s time-travelling city-building series, casting its brassy monocle over the turn of the 19th century. This was a time when monarchies grasped onto power with withered bejewelled fingers, while the modern world roared into being with the start of the industrial era.

The game gives you a huge amount of freedom about how you approach this seismic era, and here we’ll be talking about the three different game modes that will keep you clicking through the 19th century.



No Anno game would be complete without its trademark sandbox mode. In Anno 1800 it offers more customisation than ever, letting you create a game as long and relaxing, or as pacey and intense as you like.

Pick up to three rival factions, populate the world with Traders and Pirates, then create a bespoke game that suits you. Play God and shape the world, adjusting the size of the map, the size of the islands within it, and the wealth of minerals available to exploit.

Choose how much income you start with, how often special events like fire outbreaks and side-quests occur, and whether you want to start the game with a few fishing boats or a complete war fleet ready to dominate the procedurally-generated archipelago.

Finally, pick your victory conditions. There are a whopping six to go for, and you can decide how many of them your game features. Do you want to win by turning your empire into a haven for wealthy investors, or by building monuments to show off your cultural loftiness? Then there’s the Anno veterans’ favourite: An open-ended game with no victory conditions at all.

Sandbox mode leaves it all in your hands.



Anno 1800 has a full campaign mode, designed to offer both old and new players a compelling story through which to learn all the game’s mechanics. It’s based around the sandbox mode, and is just as customisable, so it’s perfect preparation for the endless tide of games you’ll be playing once you finish the campaign.

After choosing your character and giving them a name worthy of city-state leadership, you will be plunged into a family saga of death, greed, betrayal, and ambition fuelled by the furnaces of the industrial revolution. 

Upon learning of your wealthy father’s death from your sister, you return to your home city, only to be ousted from your inheritance by your Uncle Edvard. Banished to a wild island paradise, you must then start from scratch, building it out into a thriving multi-island metropolis to rival that of your uncle.

As your influence grows, you will encounter other city-states, and get embroiled in world-shaping events ranging from the conspiracies of fading monarchies, to foreign wars of independence in the New World.



After a hiatus last time out, multiplayer mode has been reinstated to Anno 1800. You can play in an alliance with shared victory conditions for a nice co-operative knees-up. Or, for a bit of healthy competition, play in an alliance but with separate goals, letting you gain economic advantages over each other.

Then there’s the free-for-all mode, where alliances are fleeting, and the battleship fleets are always ready to engage.

Multiplayer games can be set up through custom lobbies for you and your friends, or by matching you up with random players around the world via ‘Quick Match’, where new allies and enemies are waiting to be made.

Online multiplayer games can be tough to keep in sync within sessions, and to keep going across multiple sessions, so Anno 1800 has plenty of safeguards in place. The game host can be switched at any time, and each time you log into multiplayer you’ll see a list of the people who played with you in your previous sessions, making it easier to reassemble them for future games.

The modes of Anno 1800 build on the open-ended, free-form gameplay that fans have come to expect from the series. You’ll find almost the same depth of customisation across all the modes, each of which lets you fine-tune how you’re going to experience one of the most fascinating and important eras in modern human history.

Anno 1800 will be available to buy from April 16th on Ubistore and Uplay, as well as the Epic Game Store.