An Early Access Look at Songs of Syx

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By Tan Montana on January 4th, 2022

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Songs of Syx is an early access entry into the strategy-simulation city-building genre. It boasts massive battles and epic scope of size, all packaged in retro-style graphics and UI. Let’s take a look at how the early access version plays as well as the free version currently available on Itch.io and Steam. That’s right; there’s a free version of the game, not just a demo. So if this early look and article catch your interest, why not go check it out for free?

Fantasy City State Simulator

Songs of Syx is one of those games you have to restart a couple of hours in once you really think you know how it works. Do that a couple more times, and you probably understand the game. There’s so much granular detail in a game that’s really about colossal scale, so much so that in my starting hours, I worried about the contrast between the microscopic nature of some mechanics versus the goal of building up a city of thousands of drones inhabiting hundreds of structures. Fortunately, these minor details don’t end up bogging down the later game.

Fans of city simulator games or any game about maximizing efficiency and potential have a lot of work to do with this one, and the reward of a seamlessly working city is endless potential. The fallout of failure is severe, often spiraling into mass death for your citizens, though I found these hard times easy enough to come back from in my playthrough. There’s a challenge in Songs of Syx that is fair and just tough enough to keep a more casual player like myself on the hook.

Total War with a RPG Retro Inspiration

Songs of Syx is a retro base/city builder inspired by “Pharaoh”, “Dungeon Keeper”, and “Rome Total War”. It aims at fusing those genres, while also adding to the experience. Its uniqueness comes from having huge populations, while still simulating each individual in great detail-

Gamatron AB

Songs of Syx is hard to go wrong with if you enjoy city simulation games. On top of having the gameplay you’d expect from a retro-inspired sim, Songs of Syx does a decent massive battle. The inspiration of games like Total War: Rome is cited and apparent. While it may not possess the robust engine and complexity of those game’s combat, its own take on mass combat is more than enough to complement its gameplay. There’s something powerful, disheartening, and tense about raising a city’s population only to see that number fall in battle. There is a personal stake in the combat, and that connection bridges the gameplay of city planning and combat in a way that I wish more games would.

In finality, Songs of Syx is a functioning and deserving purchase in Early Access. I’m eagerly awaiting a final release to attach a positive number and review to it, as well as seeing content to come. In the meantime, there’s a free demo and loads of content. This game is absolutely worth your time and the developers deserve the support for making such a worthy title.

Tan is a Tabletop RPG writer with a deep love for give-'em-a-chance indie games and music made on a ten-year-old laptop in Audacity. They drink their seltzer warm.

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