Antiheroes: A Guildy Pleasure

There just aren’t enough hooded assassins these days. We’ve been saying it for months in the office. However, this new Steam Greenlight delight from Corpse Craft developer Tim Conkling is a little more unusual and plunges us into a gas-lit Dickensian 19th century city full of thieves and murderers. Described by Conkling himself as Civilization meets Hero Academy, Antihero takes the 4X strategy genre and spices it up by adding slaughter and corruption.


A little history lesson for those unfamiliar with the oeuvre: 4X is the shortened version of explore, expand, exploit and exterminate, with Civilization as a prime example. However this take on the genre adds thievery into the mix instead of just sheer world domination. There’s a full campaign mode available, but there’s been equal focus on asynchronous multiplayer that allows you to have multiple matches running at the same time. Conkling ideally wants Thieves With Friends with games lasting under an hour.

Blue steal
You are the proud new owner of a Thieves Guild and start off with a master thief to do your bidding. you can send him out into the world to half-inch whatever you wish, train street urchins to infiltrate buildings, and even blackmail the rich elite of the city to make some extra cash on the side. assassination missions are on offer if you don’t mind getting your hands dirty, and powerful skills such as advanced scouting can be learned as you steal resources and upgrade your guild. you can also arm your thief with an assortment of nasty weaponry such as poisoned crossbow bolts for taking on a contract killing or two.

The visuals are beautiful with a hint of the Don't Starves about them, and the board game setup adds a dose of charm. and yes, although you didn't ask, you can play through it without a single murder and make the most of the corrupt nature of the world with extortion and blackmail… but where would be the fun in that?

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