The Settlers series is back with a new game, The Settlers: New Allies. It has a modern take on its classic real-time strategy formula. The Settlers: New Allies is available on PC and will soon be available on consoles, allowing a new audience to enjoy the game’s engaging and deep gameplay. The Settlers: New Allies builds upon the series’ legacy, which started in the early 1990s. It has added new features and mechanics while staying true to the core gameplay that made it popular.
AT A GLANCE
Release date: February 17, 2023
Developer: Ubisoft Düsseldorf
Final Score: 8/10
In The Settlers: New Allies, players have access to a wide range of resources that they must manage effectively to build a prosperous settlement. This includes gathering food, wood, stone, and other materials, as well as producing goods and constructing buildings. As players progress, they can also recruit and train troops to defend their territory from enemy attacks.
One of the most significant features in The Settlers: New Allies is the addition of new ally factions. Players can form alliances with these factions, each with its unique abilities and units, to help them achieve their objectives. These allies can provide players with valuable resources and reinforcements in times of need, helping players to defend their settlement against enemy attacks.
The game also features a more dynamic economy system than previous Settlers titles. Players must balance resource production and consumption carefully to ensure their settlement has enough resources to sustain itself and to train new troops. The introduction of new production chains, such as glass and pottery, adds another layer of complexity to the game, making it a challenge for players to optimize their settlement economy.
Unfortunately, it falls short for those who prefer economic and strategic gameplay, as the focus has shifted towards combat and military action. Military preparations and combat are a more significant part of the gameplay, as players need to secure resources to create tools and weapons to train their warriors. Engineers can prospect for veins of coal, iron, gold, and gems that can only be found in clearly marked areas, and they are the only ones that can put up buildings and push out the border stones that define the territory a faction is controlling.
Once players assemble a strong military force, it’s time to take the fight to the enemy, killing their warriors and engineers. The game also has academies, which open up research via guilds, to boost a player’s faction’s capabilities and playstyle, and defensive towers and bastions can also be invested in. The game’s supply chain mechanics are essential, but food represents a secondary concern. The game includes a shop where players can use two types of currencies to get cosmetic enhancements for their chosen faction. The game also allows up to 16 players to engage in both cooperative and versus multiplayer matches on its skirmish maps.
The Settlers: New Allies introduces Carriers, which is a new twist in its gameplay. The entire population is represented on the screen, and basic civilians act as automated Carriers. They move resources and materials in real-time from harvesting operations to your settlement’s warehouse and from the warehouse to construction sites, trading harbors, or wherever else they’re needed.
Managing the economy and allocating roles to different professions is key to building a thriving settlement. The game introduces three factions: Elari, Maru, and Jorn. While the factions have unique visual identities, they are not fundamentally different in terms of mechanics, and the limited narrative may leave some players wanting more.
It has 13 campaign missions and three administrative trees for settlement defense, claiming territory, or offensive power. The game’s campaign centers on a group of refugees who land on a group of islands and encounter other factions, including groups of bandits. Players can test their skills in PvP Skirmish mode, battling human or AI opponents with any faction.
Visuals and Technical Performance
Visually, The Settlers: New Allies is stunning. The game world fills the player’s senses with vibrant colors, while the highly detailed environments provide a sense of immersion as players explore. The designers have created well-designed character models, each with its unique appearance and style.
The Settlers series has always been known for its detailed and immersive world-building, and the latest addition does not disappoint. The game is full of visible activity, with your settlement continually buzzing with Carriers moving resources, and Engineers constructing buildings and expanding your borders.
The attention to detail is impressive, with even the most basic of civilians having their own unique looks and animations.
When it comes to system requirements, the game is fairly easy to run. To run the game at a minimum of 1080p at 30 frames per second, you’ll need at least an AMD Ryzen 3 1200 or an Intel Core i3-6100 processor, 8 GB of RAM (running in dual-channel mode), and an AMD Radeon 550 or NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950 graphics card. You’ll also need at least 14 GB of available storage and DirectX 11.
For the best possible experience, it’s recommended to have an AMD Ryzen 5 1600 or an Intel Core i7-6700 processor, 8 GB of RAM (running in dual-channel mode), and an AMD Radeon RX 470 or NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 graphics card. It’s also recommended to have an SSD for faster loading times. The game requires DirectX 11.
Overall, the game runs smoothly on PC, but players will need a relatively powerful system to enjoy it at its fullest potential. Players with lower-spec systems may experience some slowdowns and frame rate drops. However, with the right hardware, The Settlers: New Allies is a visually stunning experience.
The game’s user interface is intuitive and easy to navigate, providing players with all the necessary information and controls they need to manage their settlement efficiently. The game also features impressive visual effects that add to the immersion, such as dynamic weather and lighting effects that change in real-time.