DEVELOPER Ubisoft Blue Byte/ PUBLISHER
In what’s possibly the perfect game premise, Anno 2205 is about building a city on the moon. Taking place in the 23rd century, where cities are built and governed by benevolent, carbon-neutral corporations, Anno places you in the penthouse office of one such unlikely capitalist venture. You’re then tasked with becoming the world’s number one business, by constructing and supporting a lunar colony, and plundering its abundant mineral wealth.
Not surprisingly, building a city on the Moon is expensive, so you must first establish yourself on Earth by founding at least two other metropolises – the first in an idyllic, resource-rich temperate zone; the other in the Arctic, where settlements must be constructed close to heat sources and your business activities must remain environmentally conscious.
What makes Anno 2205 interesting is its complex blend of city building and resource management. Each of the three city types has multiple classes of individuals, from lowly workers to high-flying executives, and each of these socio-economic layers needs to be supported by the one below it. In addition, each zone produces unique items from a chain of resources, some of which are required by other zones. It all results in an intricate web of trade routes and product chains that’s gently satisfying to string together.
The satisfaction is compounded by the delightful detail. Tiny robots tend to crops, flying cars zip between skyscraper-lined streets and, on the moon, tiny astronauts hop and skip between your colony buildings.
Around the time you begin constructing your moon colony, however, problems begin to emerge. Supporting your moon base requires a significant cash flow, which means having a huge workforce on Earth; this in turn means supporting that workforce’s needs through expanded