During the recent Winter Nights conference in St. Petersburg, Russia, we found some time to sit down with Fishlabs' CEO Michael Schade.
Of course, he was very keen to show us the company's next big thing: Galaxy on Fire - Alliances
Based in the same universe as the company's very successful space trading and combat games, Alliances
is a big departure for the German developer.
For one thing, it's a resource-based online real-time strategy game, not a single player-focused space shooter.
Also, it's the first game Fishlabs has designed from the ground-up as being free-to-play i.e. funded by in-app purchases.Spherical power grab
In terms of gameplay, you start off with a single planet, moving around the globe to create the various buildings that will let you harvest the three different resources (gas, metal, etc) you need.
These are the game's soft currency. There will also be a hard currency that you can buy with real cash to do things faster, or convert into the soft currencies.
Of course, as you gain more resources, you can start building up your armies of marines and your space fleets, as well as expanding your laboratories and technology trees in terms of which advanced units you've researched and unlocked.
One simple example, is you can send out scouts to check out the surrounding planets, but the more scouts you send out, the more likely you'll attract the attentions of other planetary forces.
And then it's time to marshal your forces, attack and conquer other planets and repeat the exercise over again. This is important, as you'll be able to harvest different resources from different planets.
In total, you can control to 10 planets in your space system.Better together
So far, so good - and the game certainly looks very shiny graphically - but we're not really discussed the main element.
While everything explained so far is important, it's part of the single player mode. As the Alliances
part of the game's title suggests, building up Alliances with other players, and having largescale attacks across the various galaxies is what Fishlabs is really keen on encouraging.
Indeed, as with many developers, it's looked to the success of games such as Clash of Clans
, reckoning that much more gameplay sophistication can be packed into aspects of player competition and cooperative.
Still, we'll have some time to wait to see what it comes up with.
Currently in alpha, Galaxy on Fire - Alliances
isn't due to be released until Q3 2013, initially on iOS and then following on Android, and other platforms.