Feedback: Great game but why do you exist?

Hey there, I could have sworn I had an account before now, been playing GrimDawn since it was early access… Anyway. I am a huge fan of city builders from big concept Skylines, to granular settlement management like Rimworld. Also I have 8 years industry experience.

With that out of the way, Farthest Frontier is a good game, solid 8/10, and judging it in a vacuum I would highly recommend it. Graphics, gameplay, sound, no complaints.

However, it does not exist in a vacuum. Ever since Banished borrowed heavily from Strongholds city building aspects this style of city builder has been iterated upon extensively and while Farthest Frontier executes well in all areas I can’t think of any one thing it does better than its competitors.

Anno 1800 has similar graphics, larger cities, and a huge upgrade path.
Rise to Ruins has some neat god game elements and much better city defense gameplay.
Timberborn offers much more granular control and better crisis management gameplay.
Foundation has better free form grid-less city construction.

All that being said in its current iteration Farthest Frontier feels like a HD reimagining of the OG Banished. Excellent in its own right, but failing to stand out in any category. I don’t say this as an insult, by no means. I mean it constructively, or perhaps ignorantly if I have missed something.

TLDR: Good but what Farthest Frontier really needs imho is its own “thing” to get players excited about it.

You cannot find a game with a more indepth farming system. Period. What about food waste and spoilage as well? While the physical inventory isn’t perfect it’s far greater than banished. I’m not critical of your rating 8/10 is fair but saying this game doesn’t offer anything new is just uneducated.

It’s the polygons.

Nothing out there, not Banished, not Anno, nothing has this number of polygons.

Pushing the envelope of realism.


still, I think players would love to see the devs implementing something unique or interesting feature from other similar city builder / survival management games :slight_smile:

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Well, we’ll find out more about what’s coming in the next patch at least next Thursday, 6th July.


Should be good. I agree the game lacks some depth at the moment. But it IS Early Access, lets wait a while, it has enormous potential from what I can see. My biggest issue is that the game forces me to advance and grow my population, when I just want to sit back and enjoy the roses, so to speak. Naveronasis points out a few positives about some games while glossing over the negatives. I have played, or in some cases, tried to play, the games the writer refers to and in all cases I find Farthest Frontier is superior in many aspects.

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My thoughts almost exactly.

Have played Anno 1800 extensively, and it is a completely different game from Farthest Frontier: different technology level, different scale (multiple cities/islands versus a single town) and different emphasis: Anno is all about Trade and advancing tech levels, Farthest all about balancing resources and population and providing basics, which are the least important and complex of the production ‘chains’ in Anno.

Tried to play Stronghold, found it too bland to hold my interest for more than an hour.

Remember fondly the old Sierra city-builders: Caesar, Pharaoh, Rise of the Middle Kingdom, Zeus - and would cheerfully buy and play any of them with updated mechanics and graphics (and have wishlisted some new candidate city-builders like Builders of Greece/China/Egypt and Celestial Kingdom)

But FF provides far more granular graphic detail and, to me, a different level of detail of provisions and production - never had to worry about marauding bears in Caesar, Stronghold or Zeus, to my recollection, or with Root Rot in my irrigated fields in Pharaoh.

Different games, different levels of detail and emphasis, room for all of them in my game library, thank you.

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This game currently developing to T4.

I see no reason that it could not proceed to T100.

We haven’t seen anything near an end game scenario.

We’re not even making rope, nor do we have piers, bridges or boats, yet.

This is just the beginning.

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I didn’t say it offers “Nothing New”. I am saying my impression of the game currently is that it does not stand out from its peers. It’s not meant as an insult. As for the people saying “But it’s early access.” Yeah, that’s the point, provide the impactful feedback now while development is ongoing. As a player you might feel like “but its early access” is an excuse for shortcoming, and strictly from a players perspective it is. But from a developers perspective a major advantage of early access is that it’s the best time to collect constructive criticism on design choices that still have some degree of liquidity.

Yes, the farming is more in depth, however the farming is not this games “thing” its not a draw, its not a mechanic so large that it modifies your play style in a way that makes the game fun and unique. It feels like an integrative improvement at best, and a tedious menu pecker at worse forcing you to constantly click on a dozen or more buildings or menus to triple check resources not actively monitored by the static UI.

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Farming literally is the only way to keep your city alive after 200 pop so yea id say it’s a pretty large mechanic …

I hear what you are saying, but I personally think you are wrong and haven’t really “got” into the game, just an opinion.

I total agree with Norm.
This game has no deepnes. T100 was mentioned. There is no even a roadmap. 1 Year was needed to balance out this game. Not sure if this game fell in sleep from a dev perspective. In t4 there are endless ressources, ehats the purpose of this?

So because the game does not have a “victory” banner after x the game has no meaning?

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Nope, but this is decribing it very well:
Excellent in its own right, but failing to stand out in any category.

I think that “thing” is already there. Growing a population successfully in this game is hard, harder than any game like it I’ve played before. It can be tricky to get your feet under you in Banished, but once you do there’s nothing stopping you and you can cover the entire map with housing and infrastructure as quickly as your citizens can build the buildings. FF doesn’t get easier, and climbing through the tiers takes a lot of effort and attention to detail.

It’s not easy to just throw down a bunch of farms to meet a rising demand in flax or wheat because you have to slowly cultivate their fertility levels. There’s no good, reliable way to hunt at long distances away from the city center. Fishing is limited. Foraging sucks. And even if you have the food production to sustain growth, it takes years to see that growth happen. Everything takes so much time and dedication to do, which makes everything you are able to achieve so satisfying. It’s so refreshing to have to work through every stage of the game for every little thing you get.

I’ve never been able to find Anno 1800 fun, because whenever I play it I feel like I’m going through the motions. Everything is easy, the game does exactly what I want it to, when I want it to, how I want it to. It’s the silky smooth, lifeless triple-A experience that is very remote from the dirt-under-your-nails experience I’ve had with FF.

I think you’re right that FF is very much like an extension of Banished, but I think it’s everything Banished could have been if it had more than one dev basically doing it as a hobby, and to me that’s absolutely something to get excited about. I think Banished is one of the best city builders ever made, not because it has the best features but because it has the best beating heart at the center of it, so it’s awesome to see a similar world with a similar spirit be so much more fully fleshed out.

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What kind of gimmick do you even have in mind here? As you have pointed out the genre has been pretty thoroughly iterated upon, and so for any gimmick you might mention there is surely already an example on the market.

However, none of the other games have really managed the ‘complete package’ that I would consider a worthy successor as a “banished 2.0”. They each have their gimmick, and I have enjoyed some of them for many hours, but all fail to scratch that banished itch one reason or another. FF has that same core feeling of banished, but expands on it with combat, terraforming, and more thoughtful building and resource options. The thing that makes it really stick out to me is the crate team, and it was reading the reviews of their previous title that got me over the line. I haven’t been disappointed, it has really been a joy to interact with the devs during this early access, which is pretty exceptional in this day and age.

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