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King Pins is a micro-RTS inspired by Age of Empires

A full screen image from the video game King Pins, depicting kingdoms and soldiers fighting. It is depicted in a cute, retro-pixel style.
(Image credit: Sokpop Collective)

Game development collective Sokpop's latest is a $3 real-time strategy game with a neat concept: Boiling down the Age of Empires-style RTS to its absolute basics. The result is King Pins, a micro-RTS that forces you to quickly figure out a detailed economic strategy while reacting to your opponents' maneuvers. The object of a match is simple: Kill the enemy's king unit before they kill yours.

King Pins has a cute and fun campaign that takes about an hour, introducing you to the game concepts and unlocking game's four factions: Goblins, Humans, Elves, and spooky undead Devils. You can then do local skirmish matches against an AI with a few difficulties or with up to 4 human players. It's an RTS you can play from the couch, which is neat to say the least. Like Age of Empires, it's a game where you carefully time your unit production and building creation to end up with the right mix of attacking units at just the right time. Unlike an Age game, you can't catch your opponent off guard because King Pins has no Fog of War.

Sokpop Collective is a Utrecht-based four person game development crew best known for making two small games every month through their Patreon program, which is funded by just over 1,500 people. Earlier this year, they successfully passed the two year mark of making two games a month without skipping a beat.

You can find King Pins on itch.io for now, but like most of their games it'll probably make its way to Steam sooner or later. It'd sure be neat if they figured out Remote Play Together for this one! 

Jon Bolding is a games writer and critic with an extensive background in strategy games. When he's not on his PC, he can be found playing every tabletop game under the sun.