The next game from the Battle Brothers devs is a sci-fi tactical RPG that 'takes everything beloved' about their last game and 'improves it tenfold'

Overhype, the studio behind the really rather good Battle Brothers, is beating its swords into plasma rifles for its next game. Called Menace, it's another turn-based "brutal tactical RPG" in the vein of its predecessor, but it's trading in grim low-fantasy for a "grounded sci-fi strategy experience". I think grounded might just be another way of saying grim, judging by the number of people howling and turning into clouds of vapour in the trailer.

"Menace takes everything beloved about Battle Brothers—the evolving characters, the challenge, the army management, the dynamic sandbox gameplay," reads the game's announcement blurb, "and improves it tenfold." As you head up strike forces composed of infantry, tanks, and mechs, Menace boasts it will "shake up the current norms of turn-based tactics games."

(Image credit: Overhype Studios)

A transition to 3D environments allows "larger skirmishes across living battlefields" than you could find in Battle Brothers, while "the game’s mysterious enemy builds on Battle Brothers' sandbox and offers a powerful foe that has profound consequences on the strategic layer". "Cut off from the core worlds, help isn’t coming but neither is oversight or repercussions."

So you're going to die a lot, sounds like, which should be as familiar as an old friend to anyone with experience of Overhype's medieval mercenary sim. But Menace promises you won't get bored: "Every run of Menace plays differently from the last, and players will face seemingly insurmountable challenges that take multiple forms across playthroughs," says the studio.

Those seemingly insurmountable challenges will come in the form of Menace's procedurally generated "multi-mission operations," featuring a bunch of different vehicles, your own randomised squads of cannon fodder, "detailed supply management," and factions that you can alternately ally with or wage war against, depending on your inclination.

(Image credit: Overhype Studios)

You can manage your press-ganged rubes aboard your "mobile base of operations," which sounds to me like a kind of XCOM base layer (though I could be reading too much into a single line on a press release).

Menace hits next year, although neither Overhype nor Hooded Horse, the game's publisher, are being any more specific than that. It'll release via both Steam and the Epic Games Store, depending on which side of that modern day tactical and strategic conflict you come down on. 

Joshua Wolens
News Writer

One of Josh's first memories is of playing Quake 2 on the family computer when he was much too young to be doing that, and he's been irreparably game-brained ever since. His writing has been featured in Vice, Fanbyte, and the Financial Times. He'll play pretty much anything, and has written far too much on everything from visual novels to Assassin's Creed. His most profound loves are for CRPGs, immersive sims, and any game whose ambition outstrips its budget. He thinks you're all far too mean about Deus Ex: Invisible War.