Build a criminal empire or tear one down in Company of Crime

Company of Crime
(Image credit: 1C Publishing)

Company of Crime is a tactical turn-based strategy game, inspired by the likes of XCOM and Mafia and set in the exciting and transformative years of 1960s London. It wasn't all rock 'n' roll and mini-skirts—corruption and organised crime also played a big part in this iconic era. So it's up to you whether you choose to build up your own crime empire through fear, influence, and respect, or tear one down, as you work your way up the ranks of Scotland Yard. Company of Crime will be available on Steam starting August 8, 2020.

Swinging London was a huge time of change. On the surface, music, fashion, and art came to the forefront as England's capital truly began to find its feet after the gloomy post-war years. But organised crime was rife as notorious gangs worked covertly to gain influence with politicians and movie stars. The most well-known of these were undoubtedly the Kray brothers as they rose from their working-class roots to gain popularity and notoriety and climbed their way up the social ladder by questionable means.

You'll take on the role of either a criminal gang or Scotland Yard. Each campaign contrasts sharply with the other, giving you insight into both sides of Swinging London. If you choose the dark underworld of crime, you'll need to build up your gang's influence and notoriety, all while staying beneath the radar of Scotland Yard. In contrast, the police campaign is more reactive and slow-paced as you work your way up the ranks of the force. And you'll need to be thorough when searching for clues and gathering evidence if you want to outwit and close in on those infamous gang leaders.

It's all about building fear and respect as a criminal mastermind in 1960s London. Guns may seem like a sure way of getting what you want, when you want it, but sometimes you'll need to be far more subtle than that. Gentler, less deadly forms of persuasion can be far more effective if applied in the right way or to the right person. Gunfire is loud after all and is more likely to draw unwanted attention and this is where the 'heat' mechanic comes into play. Heat will be generated by violent actions and loud noises and if you accumulate too much of it, someone is sure to call the authorities. And if the police do show up to investigate, you'd better be certain you haven't left behind any evidence that could incriminate you or your associates and put your entire criminal empire in jeopardy.

(Image credit: 1C Publishing)

If you choose to take on the role of Scotland Yard, you will be tasked with gathering evidence against the many criminals at work in the capital. As you build your career and work your way up the ranks of the police force, you'll need to search out and analyze 'suspicious' locations, collect evidence and try to puzzle out which families are tied to the crimes that are plaguing London. You can bet it won't be easy though—these criminals are pros when it comes to covering their tracks and they'll do their best to destroy any evidence of their misdeeds. And who's to say that their corruption hasn't infiltrated Scotland Yard itself?

Whichever role you choose, melee combat will play a big part in Company of Crime and helps to set it apart from other tactical turn-based strategy games. Each unit has a 'zone of control' and you can remove this from an enemy unit by engaging or distracting them while another member of your team sneaks up behind and gets the jump on them. You'll often find yourself fighting in tight spaces and your surroundings will play a big part in your combat choices. Chairs or bottles can become deadly weapons or distractions and should someone manage to get hold of a gun, you'll need to choose whether to try to disarm them, exchange fire, or beat a hasty retreat.

(Image credit: 1C Publishing)

Company of Crime brings the thrilling world of Swinging London to life and keen-eyed players will find many references from this iconic era as they are woven into the lore of the game. And while their names may have been changed slightly, you might even find yourself face-to-face with some of the real-life, criminal gangs of the time, so you'd better tread carefully.

Company of Crime is developed by Resistance Games and published by 1C Entertainment, and is set to launch on August 8, 2020. If you're keen to jump into the iconic world of 1960s London, you can check out the game on Steam right now and add it to your wishlist.