Armada becomes Tooth and Tail, first "real" screen released

Tooth and Tail

Monaco creator Pocketwatch Games announced Armada (stylized [ARMADA]) last year as a streamlined RTS that puts a premium on creative strategy rather than clicks-per-second. To emphasize that focus, the whole thing is being designed first and foremost to be played with a controller, a very unusual move for a genre that's most obviously at home on a mouse and keyboard. We haven't heard much about it since, but today the studio unveiled the "real" in-game visual style, inspired by early RTSes like Command & Conquer, as well as not just one but two new names.

Armada was actually a code-name, according to today's announcement, which was then switched to Lead to Fire as the official title. But apparently nobody liked that name—it "sat in our stomachs like a bad gyro"—and so it was changed again, to Tooth and Tail, which is appropriate to the subject matter and has a pretty clever hidden meaning, too .

The official art, meanwhile, is pixelated and pretty. "We subscribed to the SpyParty philosophy—the game should look utterly shitty until it’s absolutely amazing. People will always assume that halfway-decent programmer art is the final visual target," Andy Schatz of Pocketwatch wrote, explaining why the studio kept the real art under wraps until now. "And it finally looks great! (or at least we think so). Inspired by the RTS games that we grew up on—we wanted to take the pixel art from the early 90’s and modernize the heck out of it. Pixel, meet shader."

Schatz said the development of Tooth and Tail will be "a lot more open" now that the proper art has been unveiled, but there's still a long way to go before the game is finished. A release date hasn't been set but the team expects to have it ready for launch sometime in 2016, with a possible Early Access release in the cards as well.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.