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Clockwork Empires, the eldritch horror colony simulator, will be out this month

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Clockwork Empires, the "colony explosion simulator" that mashes together The Sims and Cthulhu in a strange, steampunk world, has been in Early Access for a couple of years now. It's undergone a number of updates over that span, including one in which Frontier Naturalist and Man of Science Amon Chalkbracket unearths a strange artifact, turns into a fishman, and runs away to the sea (which I mention mainly because of his fantastic name). A beta began in May, and today developer Gaslamp Games announced that it will go into full launch on October 26. 

At its core, Clockwork Empires is a sandbox colony management sim in which you must establish, maintain, and grow an Imperial outpost on rugged, untouched lands. Strip the resources, feed the machines, drive industry and progress—and then deal with the dread consequences of awakening that which waits, dreaming. 

"Every colonist is a unique simulated individual with their own personality, motivation, secrets, and peculiar desires which must be satisfied lest they invite Terrible Consequences ranging from occult ritual to delicious cannibalism," Gaslamp said. "When terrible things go Too Far, eldritch Horrors may be unleashed—leaving colonists in chaos, confusion, and occasionally Oddly Transformed amidst burning wreckage, from which only you can save them (maybe). Do your job well, or let it all crumble into a pile of misery and start over in the next spot over; either way, in true Bureaucratic fashion, you will bring Glory to the Clockwork Empire." 

The nice thing about the Early Access release is that even though Clockwork Empires won't technically be released until later this month, you can buy it and start playing right now if you want. There's also a website with more details at, and you can lay your eyes on some screens below.

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.