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De­vel­oper EarthWork GamEs • P RICE $ 18­

I be­lieve I first saw Forts at PAX Aus­tralia in 2015 and I loved the mad­ness of build­ing tipsy tow­ers (and smash­ing other peo­ple’s tipsy tow­ers) so much that I made it my fea­ture game that year. This year I re­viewed a full re­lease and it’s now on the In­die Show­case! What more could I say about the game? De­signer/Pro­gram­mer Tim Auld tells us, “We are get­ting around 2000 mul­ti­player games per day four months af­ter launch. We’ve had a sur­pris­ingly strong show­ing from France, but Ger­many and the US dom­i­nate.” Cer­tainly, some of my favourite Forts mo­ments were play­ing co-op with a friend.

So, given Forts is some­thing you can buy now, let’s look at how peo­ple can get in­volved. Auld says, “Play­ers sign up to the North Amer­i­can or Euro­pean Chal­longe bracket. Co­or­di­na­tion is via Dis­cord. For each match, a ref­eree hosts the game, as an ob­server, to me­di­ate map se­lec­tion,

en­force rules, keep score and save the re­play. The first round is in­stant knock­out, semis are best of three, and the fi­nal is best of five. The cham­pion and run­ners up re­ceive Forts keys and t-shirts.” Have I par­tic­i­pated? Wow, I am way too scared. If you are un­fa­mil­iar with it, Forts is a game with many pieces and pos­si­ble build or­ders.

And, it’s get­ting more stuff! Auld tells us, “The com­mu­nity has been keen for new weapons. Our favourite, so far, is the flak can­non, which has an ad­justable fuse. The det­o­na­tion can spray shrap­nel be­hind en­emy bar­ri­cades, good for flush­ing out en­emy mor­tar po­si­tions.” There’s also a map edi­tor and meth­ods for mod­ding. The de­vel­op­ers even in­cluded a map and mod­ded AI by player and com­mu­nity or­gan­iser, Quxz­cover. One of the best things about at­tend­ing PAX over the last five years has been meet­ing and main­tain­ing con­tact with de­vel­op­ers as their games evolve. Forts has been won­der­ful to watch grow.


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