Empire of Sin, the strategy game from romero games and Paradox interactive, puts you at the heart of the ruthless criminal underworld of 1920S prohibition-era Chicago. It's up to you to Hustle, charm and intimidate your way to the top of the pile and do whatever it takes to stay there. This character-driven, noir-inspired game puts players smack dab in the glitz and glamor of the roaring 20S, all while working behind the scenes in the gritty underbelly of organized crime.
Empire of Sin is a love-letter to the old-school design of Bullfrog games. Part management sim, part RPG, part XCOM (with gangsters), it achieves its goal to bring different elements together into a cohesive and enjoyable unit. Its shortcomings and few bugs did not affect how much fun we had testing this game.
Empire of Sin has its bugs and some rough cinematic moments. But Romero Games pulled this project off with a team of just 30 people. For a game of its ambition, that seems like a small team. It’s pretty much an indie project, or perhaps “double-A,” compared to other games that are more polished but have hundreds of developers — or even more — working on them. What I also liked was that the game feels smart. I felt like I was playing against other crime bosses who were figuring out how to outthink me or double-cross me. And that’s what you want in a gangster game.
Empire of Sin is a great strategy and management game, that manages to capture the essence of its setting, even with its shortcomings.
Empire of Sin is a rather seductive mix of turn-based strategy inspired by XCOM and Prohibition-era thug management games. The game experience is varied enough and the city of Chicago lively enough for the player to have a good 20 hours of fun, but don't expect to invest much more in it as the situations you will face during the fights, in the management of your empire and in the relationships with other gangs will repeat themselves quite quickly, giving the feeling that you've gone around pretty quickly and not really making you want to restart a game after reaching the end credits.
Empire of Sin has a lot of potential. Unfortunately, it's buggy and full of odd design choices, never really reaching the heights it sets for itself. My only caveat would be to keep an eye on patches and feedback. If the developers stick with it, Empire of Sin could evolve into a comeback kid. Wait for a sale if you're desperate for mob action, as it's not in great shape currently.
Empire of Sin gets lost in a maze of design decisions that lead to an unfocused and sprawling game. The management and RPG mechanics cannibalize each other, meaning that neither works on its own and they definitely don’t work well together.
Empire of Sin's criminal management sim and turn-based tactical combat combo sounds brilliant on paper, but it completely fails to live up to its aspirations due to major imbalances and bugs.
February 18, 2020
Empire of Sin has been delayed until autumn 2020.
March 21, 2017
The swiss online store WorldofGames lists Assassin's Creed Empire and sets the release date for October on PC, PS4 and Xbox One. Read more