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22 Jan 2011

I've been real busy lately and am thus very, very late to the party on this one, but fellow game designer, colleague, and all-around swell guy Matthew Gallant and his indie associates (collectively called No Fun Games) certainly deserve recognition for their excellent one-button RTS Pax Britannica.

From their site:

Pax Britannica is a one-button real-time strategy game by No Fun Games. Up to four players battle it out underwater, struggling to be the last one standing!

Holding down the button spins the needle on the radial menu in the middle of the player's factory ship. The needle will only travel as far as the player's current resources allow. Resources (gold? seaweed? who knows!) accumulate over time.

It seems almost too simple to be strategic, but this design effectively distills the RTS concepts of resource management and unit deployment into a tightly-focused package. One-button interfaces are fascinating studies in game design constraints, and Pax Britannica is far more effective than most that I've played. And of course, it helps that the game looks great and is accompanied by a swell soundtrack. ;)

Pax Britannica recently made #3 on Bytejacker's Free Indie of the Year Awards 2010 as well, bested only by Devil's Tuning Fork and the excellent Super Crate Box... worthy adversaries to say the least. That means you should go play it. It's available for Windows, Mac, and Linux, and it's free, so you really have no excuse.

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game-design video-games