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Psychotic Weasel
Jun 24, 2004

Bang! You're dead.


Hello Goons. Chances are if you're in here you're already familiar with the Anno series. But to those of you who aren't, welcome.



A Brief Background
The Anno series made it's debut over 20 years ago with the inital release of Anno 1602 way back in 1998 (marketed as 1602 A.D. in North America). Since then the IP has passed through various studios and publishers with a total of 7 games now having been released for the main series with another 5 spin-offs for consoles and mobile devices. Currently the series is in the hands of Blue Byte (of The Settlers fame) and is being published by Ubisoft.

Despite the varying developers and scopes involved with each game - spanning from the late middle ages to the distant future - the games themselves all follow the same basic formula and can best be described as a puzzle wrapped in a city builder. Each game takes place on a world inspired by Earth but fundamentally different as landmasses are limited to a series of islands sitting in a vast ocean. Starting off with a ship, some basic supplies and some lowly settlers you and your competitors are tasked with settling an island, seeing to your people's needs and growing your empire from it's humble beginnings as a farming village to a vast empire that spans the world with a gleaming capital and a complex logistical network to supply it with everything from the most basic foodstuffs to the rarest of exotic luxuries utilizing expansion, trade and outright conquest.



Anno 1800 In A Nutshell
With the latest entry into the series we return to a more familiar time period; earlier games all focused around the middle ages and early renaissance as global exploration and trade was coming into its own, while the later entries looked to the near and far futures with a much bleaker outlook of life on a planet ravaged by climate change, resource shortages and unchecked development. Anno 1800 doesn't quite take us back to the renaissance but instead sicks us at the dawn of the industrial revolution and will pit us against the challenges rapid industrialization and urbanization had on every day life and society in general during this era. The game sticks with the concepts that returning players will be familiar with but it but makes some fundamental changes that help to both bring it back to the series' roots, after criticism around it's predecessor 2205 simplified things too much, but also provide players with a more user friendly experience so you don't need to have an Excel sheet and calculator handy in order to play.

The game also aims to be much more "positive" according to the devs. While it takes its inspiration from an age generally associated with unending human misery and exploitation they aimed to make the game representative of the ideals of the age and not a 100% historically accurate simulation. Focusing instead on the rapid pace of technological innovation and unprecedented economic growth seen across most of the Western world through the 19th century. So while you are able to build some horrifying Victorian age hell on earth you don't necessarily have to.

Again you'll begin your journey as a humble farming community with only basic farmers to get your foothold in the world but quickly expand to a new working class of factory workers to toil away in your newly built mills as you take your first steps into a new era. From there you'll move up to workshops staffed with more sophisticated artisans which give way to highly educated engineers before capping out at wealthy investors to round out your society that you will use to build grand monuments and the first ever power stations. Building ever larger industries to extract the raw resources you'll need to your factories that in turn churn out a variety of commodities and goods your people will demand, along with the complex shipping network to needed to get everything to market and a powerful navy needed to make sure all your goods get to where they're going.



What's New with Anno 1800
Early on in development the team creating the game established a website through which they could connect with fans and update the community on how the game was coming along and what to expect. This was to help gain vaulable feedback that has helped shape the game and reconnect with the community that felt a little disapointed and abandonded with the way things had turned out on the previous entry. Called the Anno Union, the site is horribly designed but contains a wealth of information as it's been consitently updated once or twice a week since the game was announced back in August 2017.

Below are some snippets:

  • Along with the four five (edit: shouldn't proof read things when you can't sleep) distinct classes of workers representing your progress through the industrial revolution, you will be tasked with carefully balancing each of them to ensure you have enough workers where they're needed so your society doesn't collapse around you. Whereas in previous titles you'd want to advance as many people as possible as quickly as possible (for that sweet, sweet tax base) this time around you'll want to make sure you have enough farmers to till the fields and feed your burgeoning cities while also making sure you have enough workers to churn out all the cheap crap people will soon be demanding. Not every one can be a wealthy tycoon in this new world, someone's gotta mop the floors and scrub the toilets (once engineers finish inventing them) and sadly that someone is you.

  • Working conditions, profits or people?. Do you become one of the robber barons of olde, cracking the whip to extract every last drop of value from your work force or do you become a champion of the people making sure everyone has their needs tended to and is experiencing life to the fullest. Careful with what you choose; pushing people to their limits will help you produce more but crack that whip a little too hard and your people may decide to go to work on you instead of your factories, while going too easy on your work force may leave you struggling to fulfill everyone's needs while your under defended ports become too tempting a target for your opponents to pass up.


  • Happiness vs. satisfaction. Tying into the gameplay mechanic above Anno 1800 makes a substantial change to the way you advance your society. As in all previous games your people will have measures for overall satisfaction and happiness, but this time they will no longer be tied together. Before there was typically a direct link between how much you were providing your people with and how happy they were; they more goods they had at their disposal the happier they were. And so long as they were happy they could be promoted to the next tier of worker. Shortages of any good would lower the overall happiness of a population class and hold you back. This is no longer the case, so long as your people now have enough of the goods they demand they will be able to advance to the next tier and grow your empire. This ties in with the 'work everyone to death' mechanic mentioned above as being a total bastard will no longer hold you back. No longer do you need to concern yourself with how happy other people are - they are going to be artisans whether they drat well want to or not.

  • Explore a growing world. Once you've grown your society to a certain point at home and are done leaving your mark you'll have to travel abroad to seek out the luxuries and goods your people acquire a taste for. Chartering expeditions from the comfort of your own home your explorers will travel to new lands and turn up long lost artifacts and exotic forms of fauna and flora. Provided they make it home alive and in once piece you'll be able to show these acquisitions off to an increasingly curious public. You'll also find new land to open up and extract more exotic goods such as spices, tobacco, sugar and oil. When expanding to the new world you'll also be introduced to new population classes to help you grow.

  • Build monuments to your vanity. You'll have a number of structures that can be built to show off your various prizes and curios. Museums and zoos can be constructed using a modular tile set so you can show off your acquisitions however you like. As you reach the zenith of your empire you can construct more unique buildings like the exhibition space to further show off just how advanced your truly are.


  • Developing your island paradise. How you choose to develop each island will have a positive and negative effect on how people perceive it. While your impact will be minimal at first pretty soon all those filthy coal burning factories belching out clouds of soot and ash will turn your pristine wilderness into a polluted brownlands. Through the construction of picturesque gardens, statues and the aforementioned monuments you will attract a new type of visitor to your islands: tourists. Tourists don't count specifically as population but they do drop copious amounts of money as they stroll around your islands. The longer you keep them there the more money they will spend. You may also get 'unique' visitors you can recruit that give you various bonuses while in your employ. There will be other ways to, uh, 'recruit' new employees but getting them to willingly visit your island is among the easier methods.


  • More detailed logistical planning. The heart of your logistical network will be the humble warehouse. Literally a giant closet you jam things into until you need them for something else. Building a warehouse previously allowed you to open up more of the island you've settled and expand outwards. They would also send out carts to transport goods to and from industries and allow certain industries to pull goods directly from your stores instead of their source. They still fulfill this role but there's only so much each warehouse can handle at a time. Placing a single one and surrounding it with a dozen factories will quickly create a bottle neck in production leaving good sitting around in the streets while your production grinds to a halt from lack of imputs or having their own stores fully stocked and awaiting transport. Properly planning out your logistical network will be in key to ensuring your industries continue to run smoothly while you take care to avoid wasting precious space on unnecessary facilities.

  • Choo choo trains! A new concept for the Anno series, a cutting edge development for the time will see a new addition to your transport network. At the moment they'll only fill one role, however. Transporting oil from your ports to your new power plants. I'm pretty sure they were meant to do more at one point but lack of dev time to properly flesh out gameplay and/or unfixable bugs may have prevented them from doing more. Who knows, maybe they'll expand on this later. Still, you'll need to plan your cities carefully to leave room for them as power stations only supply a limited vicinity around them and you'll need to make sure your tracks can reach each one without causing too much disruption.


  • Electricity! Probably one of the single most important developments in mankind's history was learning how to generate and utilize electrical power. Through this technology you'll be able to further improve the productivity of your factories with automated machinery and increase the comfort of people's homes with electrical lighting. The game has them running exclusively off oil, which is limited on your home islands but plentiful in the new world. The devs have acknowledged that while power plants of this era would've most likely been coal fired they felt that coal was being pulled in too many directions and needed to add something else.

That's Great Op, But Actually I Can't Read. Can I Have Some Pretty Pictures to Drool Over Instead?
Uh... sure.



Want to see it in action? You can watch it some new fangled moving pictures on the game's Twitch VOD library below:
https://www.twitch.tv/ubisoftbluebyte/videos
You'll want to view the 'AnnoCast' videos to see anything specific to this game. Most are in English but some are in German as well.

I Am Impatient And Have No Willpower!
Well great. It's available for pre-order now on Steam, the Ubisoft store and probably all your favourite grey market key sites as well. It is not available on GOG and likely never will be because the game does come with DRM. Pre-ordering gives you access to a number of unique skins for vehicles already in the game (but no other inherent bonuses).

When Does This Come Out!?
The game is scheduled for release world wide on Tuesday, February 26th, 2019 Tuesday, April 16th. After much debate the team decided the game needed a bit more polish and pushed it back roughly 6 weeks; hopefully it pays off as the game is looking great so far.


And remember, for further details and to get caught up on anything else missed here you can always check the backlog of updates on the Anno Union for everything we know so far.

Psychotic Weasel fucked around with this message at 00:36 on Jan 29, 2019

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boar guy
Jan 25, 2007



300 hours in 2205 and 300 in 2070...ready for the new!

Psychotic Weasel
Jun 24, 2004

Bang! You're dead.


Yep - loved the change in setting for 2070 and played it quite a bit with friends at the time it was released. A graphical bug with the water forced me to put the game down for good at one point but it's still one of my favs. And for all the criticism 2205 got about replayability I've still sunk a few hundred hours into it. You can build some really gorgeous cities once you've 'finished' the game and just want to screw around.

Nice that they're giving you more tools and actual gameplay mechanics to beautify your city in this iteration as well. Sometimes you want to take a break from optimizing production chains and just play with your zen garden instead.

Jesustheastronaut!
Mar 9, 2014






Lipstick Apathy

Love me some ANNO but nothing since 1404 has really gripped me. I'm really excited about 1800 though and can't wait to play it

Edit: also sad they removed multiplayer since 1404 and aren't bringing it back with 1800, multiplayer was really fun with Anno

Jesustheastronaut! fucked around with this message at 04:06 on Jan 9, 2019

Psychotic Weasel
Jun 24, 2004

Bang! You're dead.


I believe they have confirmed multiplayer will be making a return here, albeit in a more limited fashion than the single player experience. Instead of branching out you'll apparently be confined to the starting map (called a session) so I guess you'll have to find some other way to exploit the resources from the South American map but you can still play with other people. There's been no further information regarding it since they mentioned it shortly after the announcement of the game, however, so things may have changed since then.

Mazz
Dec 12, 2012

Orion, this is Sperglord Actual.
Come on home.


About 3 weeks ago I tried to play the steam version of “Dawn of Discovery” I grabbed a while back and found out the game collapses on itself like a dying star in Win 10, hard locking my machine. This was a very sad time. Didn’t do too much digging on fixes since I was legit worried about how bad it locked up everything that first time, but it did lead me to the page for Anno 1800. Super excited for it, gonna be hard to wait 7 weeks since I absolutely am in an island sperging mood. I loved 1404 and 2070 both a bunch, 1404 got more playtime out of me for sure although thinking about it this is probably more that I loving hated early versions of UPlay than anything to do with the game itself.

I kind of gave up on 2205 before they added any of the later content, might need to try it again.

Here’s hoping the game has something like the .rda explorer again too, being able to customize the entire game was fun later on.

Mazz fucked around with this message at 06:56 on Jan 9, 2019

boar guy
Jan 25, 2007



pulled out 2205 for a little while just to whet my appetite for the new game and even after 300+ hours its still fun but i remember why i stopped playing. Veteran difficulty, a million bucks in the bank and 6k+ cash flow positive, i get hit with two events at the same time- a raid in the arctic zone intercepting all incominc and outgoing shipments- and the 'not enough parks in the temperate region' event (the game didn't recognize that i had already placed more than half the number of required parks and trees). So, there's negative money coming in from the attack, and massive amounts of people leaving in the temperate zone, so even after i stopped the invasion i had zero cash left to place the parks and the game was over. Such bullshit, such a bad design decision that those two events firing concurrently can take down a well planned, well funded and perfectly running corp.

Psychotic Weasel
Jun 24, 2004

Bang! You're dead.


I think those events got shoehorned in later for a couple reasons, one being that people hated the combat being relegated to separate zones entirely (admittedly a very weird design choice) and because after a certian point in 2205 you've pretty much won the game and are then just screwing around after that. They were meant to add challenge and mix things up but sometimes they could really screw up a settlement with no way for you to recover or were just plain annoying. The initial gameplay wasn't designed with them in mind and it shows.

After recently getting back into 2205 myself I decided to give 2070 another shot and found that while the graphical bug that caused me to put the game down is no longer an issue the game absolutely wasn't meant to be played at a 4k resolution- the UI is nigh on impossible to read. No workaround for that sadly so I just have to squint when I want to read something but it's fun shaking off the rust and figuring out the game all over again.

On the 1800 front they've started showing off the city orniments:
https://www.anno-union.com/en/ornamental-dear-watson/

No longer just doodads and eyecandy you slap down because you're bored, they actively contribute to the appeal of your city to attract more visitors and can have an impact on diplomacy.

Only 5 weeks to go. With a closed beta coming up at the end of the month we're likely to get even more details on how the entire game is shaping up as well.

StrixNebulosa
Feb 14, 2012

You cheated not only the game, but yourself.
But most of all, you cheated BABA


2205 question, since I bought it today and so far really like it: how the heck do you get a positive credit flow in the arctic zone? Can't get more money without making these people happy, which causes a negative energy flow, which leads me to the energy cap because apparently the only way to get energy is to build stations in the mountains (LIMITED SLOTS) until I get more scientists, which leads me right back to making these people happy and it's a vicious cycle that's making me grateful that the game is just giving me 50k whenever I go into the red.

Psychotic Weasel
Jun 24, 2004

Bang! You're dead.


StrixNebulosa posted:

2205 question, since I bought it today and so far really like it: how the heck do you get a positive credit flow in the arctic zone?

The short answer is: you don't. The Arctic and Lunar zones (and later Tundra and Orbital zones) are meant mainly to produce things your Temperate zone population will demand. You will essentially want to make very large temperate zone cities in order to bankroll operations elsewhere in the world; the moon is particularly expensive to build on so you'll want a very high income before you expand there. Generally you'll want to keep populations in these zones to a minimum as they'll only become more and more expensive to support and some of their supplies will have to come at the expense of taking up mining/fishing spots. If you're in a bind for money you can also sell things to Nick, he usually has an island dock tucked into a corner and will off things for sale and request certain things for purchase.

Later on once the stock market opens up you'll also be able to buy shares of other companies which will passively generate income... most of the time.

boar guy
Jan 25, 2007



whenever you're short on money just block out some new space in the temperate zone. everything else you should build only when absolutely necessary, as PW said. go sloooooooooow. take a combat mission whenever you get a chance.

Gwyrgyn Blood
Dec 17, 2002



Game was delayed until April 16th if you missed that announcement. Close Beta starts on Thursday though, so people will be streaming it then.

No more online-only DRM crap in this one hopefully? I did not play 2205 so I don't know what they did with that one.

Megazver
Jan 13, 2006


They've sent the closed beta keys out. I've got four keys to share with my 'friends', I guess, if anyone wants to awkwardly add each other on Uplay, then never speak to one another ever again.

Gwyrgyn Blood
Dec 17, 2002



I'll definitely take one if you've got one to spare.

Megazver
Jan 13, 2006


I can only give them to people on my Uplay friendlist, so I need your Uplay name to add you as a friend first.

queeb
Jun 10, 2004

m





me too, i fuckin love these games. uplay is Queebl.

Gwyrgyn Blood
Dec 17, 2002



Megazver posted:

I can only give them to people on my Uplay friendlist, so I need your Uplay name to add you as a friend first.

Should be Gwyrgyn

boar guy
Jan 25, 2007



yes please, Efexeye22

Psychotic Weasel
Jun 24, 2004

Bang! You're dead.


Updated the OP with the revised release date; sucks to have it pushed back so close to release but I'm hoping the additional time to polish off the game pays off in the end.

To the Goon who asked earlier - from what I've heard around the net 1800 is going to have Denuvo anti-tamper, at least at launch. And while I don't think it's been confirmed both 2070 and 2205 require a connection to U-play in order to get to the main menu, I suspect 1800 will be much the same in that regard.

Hoping to see a lot of new things coming out of the closed beta this week. I won't have a chance to play myself as work at the moment just doesn't leave me enough time to faff about with that stuff (and wouldn't want to tease myself in the end, anyway) but we should be getting a lot of new info with no NDA in place.

Psychotic Weasel fucked around with this message at 00:48 on Jan 29, 2019

Gwyrgyn Blood
Dec 17, 2002



I don't mind an U-Play check to start the game, my issue with 2070 was the always-online part, and the servers would go down every. single. time I tried to play the game.

boar guy
Jan 25, 2007



Dammit, I forgot, I changed my ID to Son0fADiddly, if you still got one of those invites left. that's a zero

Stairmaster
Jun 8, 2012

nope just me lain


Psychotic Weasel posted:



[*]Choo choo trains! A new concept for the Anno series, a cutting edge development for the time will see a new addition to your transport network. At the moment they'll only fill one role, however. Transporting oil from your ports to your new power plants. I'm pretty sure they were meant to do more at one point but lack of dev time to properly flesh out gameplay and/or unfixable bugs may have prevented them from doing more. Who knows, maybe they'll expand on this later. Still, you'll need to plan your cities carefully to leave room for them as power stations only supply a limited vicinity around them and you'll need to make sure your tracks can reach each one without causing too much disruption.

What's the goddamned point then....

Psychotic Weasel
Jun 24, 2004

Bang! You're dead.


Stairmaster posted:

What's the goddamned point then....

I honestly suspect at some point they were meant for more, possibly for transferring cargo between warehouses or something, before they had to do a scope change on it or some other aspect of gameplay changed. Some of the earliest screenshots and footage shows the trains leaving warehouses pulling what looked closer to early boxcars or hoppers. Sucks but what can you do... there'd probably be an even bigger uproar if they took them out completely after announcing the feature.

Radiation Cow
Oct 23, 2010



I've got three closed beta invites if anybody else wants in.

boar guy
Jan 25, 2007



Radiation Cow posted:

I've got three closed beta invites if anybody else wants in.

for the love of gooooooood

Son0fADiddly

Jacque Pott
Nov 6, 2010


Radiation Cow posted:

I've got three closed beta invites if anybody else wants in.

I'll take one if there's still one spare. Username is JacquePott.

Radiation Cow
Oct 23, 2010



boar guy posted:

for the love of gooooooood

Son0fADiddly

Jacque Pott posted:

I'll take one if there's still one spare. Username is JacquePott.

I've sent both of you friend requests.

Megazver
Jan 13, 2006


Gwyrgyn Blood posted:

Should be Gwyrgyn

queeb posted:

me too, i fuckin love these games. uplay is Queebl.

Added you two as friends. Requests sent, I'll do the invite thing when you accept.

funakupo
May 9, 2006

the ultimate longterm partner

Hair Elf

If anyone still out in the cold for invite, I have 2 left. Quote this and your Uplay name. I am assuming no regional shenanigans on beta? I'm in Belgium for reference.

mrpwase
Apr 21, 2010

I HAVE GREAT AVATAR IDEAS
For the Many, Not the Few



I've got 3 invites, quote this and post your uplay name.

Ineptitude
Mar 2, 2010

Heed my words and become a master of the Heart (of Thorns).

Always been a fan of city builders and am itching for a new one to play that is more fleshed out than an indie EA title (Ostriv, which i bought like a year ago, has not really had any big updates since then for example)

I have never bought an UBISOFT game before but have heard about how their DRM policies makes people angry. I see up above that Anno 1800 has Denuvo, which is just a word to me since i have no experience with it yet.
How bad is the DRM? Are those stories about people upgrading their computer then not being able to play the game true? Are there limited installs? Does the DRM suck all the juice out of your PC like some claim?

I already have several programs that require internet access, like Adobe creative cloud, and i don't notice their DRM in daily use.

queeb
Jun 10, 2004

m





Megazver posted:

Added you two as friends. Requests sent, I'll do the invite thing when you accept.

hmm nothing showed up for a friend request in uplay.

Edit: it's an L at the end, if that makes a difference, haha.

queeb fucked around with this message at 14:49 on Jan 29, 2019

Megazver
Jan 13, 2006


queeb posted:

hmm nothing showed up for a friend request in uplay.

Edit: it's an L at the end, if that makes a difference, haha.

Huh. Alright, sent again.

And it seems like they want me to send all three invites I've got as a single batch, so I'm going to wait up a bit more and see if anyone else wants the one I have left. Just quote this and I'll add you on Uplay and send the invites to all three.

Poil
Mar 17, 2007


It's ubisoft so of course there's going to be drm out the rear end. But hopefully always on crap at least won't be.

Mazz posted:

About 3 weeks ago I tried to play the steam version of “Dawn of Discovery” I grabbed a while back and found out the game collapses on itself like a dying star in Win 10, hard locking my machine. This was a very sad time. Didn’t do too much digging on fixes since I was legit worried about how bad it locked up everything that first time, but it did lead me to the page for Anno 1800. Super excited for it, gonna be hard to wait 7 weeks since I absolutely am in an island sperging mood. I loved 1404 and 2070 both a bunch, 1404 got more playtime out of me for sure although thinking about it this is probably more that I loving hated early versions of UPlay than anything to do with the game itself.

I kind of gave up on 2205 before they added any of the later content, might need to try it again.

Here’s hoping the game has something like the .rda explorer again too, being able to customize the entire game was fun later on.
The GoG version of 1404 runs perfectly for me on an old crappy computer with 10, so maybe that one would for you too. Unless it's an issue with modern hardware.

lonter
Oct 12, 2012


Megazver posted:

Huh. Alright, sent again.

And it seems like they want me to send all three invites I've got as a single batch, so I'm going to wait up a bit more and see if anyone else wants the one I have left. Just quote this and I'll add you on Uplay and send the invites to all three.

I'd love an invite, my Uplay is "rekingb"

Megazver
Jan 13, 2006


lonter posted:

I'd love an invite, my Uplay is "rekingb"

Request sent. That'll be 3/3 invites from me.

boar guy
Jan 25, 2007



thanks radiationcow!

Ultimate Shrek Fan
May 2, 2005

by FactsAreUseless


I, too, would absolutely love an invite. uplay is U_S_F

hardycore
Nov 4, 2009


disappointed by the lack of TRAINS

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lonter
Oct 12, 2012


Thanks!

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