Take on the role of a Junior Bureaucrat (Colonial Grade), sent forth to seek fame, promotions, and natural resources to feed the ravenous maw of Imperial Industry & Commerce. History is yours to seize for fame and fortune, for Science, and for the Queen and the glory of the Clockwork Empires!
User reviews: Mostly Positive (233 reviews)
Release Date: Aug 15, 2014

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Early Access is the single most influential tool we can find to receive feedback to improve the game. We've had tremendous success with doing this on smaller scales in the past with Dungeons of Dredmor, but with a larger game, especially a sandbox simulation game, more testing is dramatically more valuable. Early Access will make Clockwork Empires the best game we can possibly make it.

The benefits of Early Access for the players are, of course, early access to the game, and the ability to not only watch the game take shape but to help us shape it with suggestions on how we can improve systems, and be able to log in every month and see notable content additions and systems improvements inspired by your feedback.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“We have a list of features to complete which we've discussed in detail on our Clockwork Empires: Development Progress site. We'll release the game when these features are done. Current estimate for their completion is about 9 months, but the most important thing for us is that the features we've discussed and wanted to include in the project make it in.

We also provide weekly development progress updates with changlogs on the Gaslamp Games blog and through the Gaslamp Games mailing list.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

This our giant Development Progress Report page (as mentioned) which we shall keep updated with each major public release of Clockwork Empires.

In terms of how the full version will differ from the current version:

The full version of Clockwork Empires will have more monsters, more character interactions, more vehicles, more events, a much improved user interface (based on feedback), more biome diversity, multiplayer, and ... of course, we will be improving game performance and resolving any crash bugs that are found as we go. (If anyone sees any crashing, please report it to Gaslamp Games for immediate Purging).”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“Upon loading the game, the player is set to the task of building a thriving colony out of a pile of supplies and handful of characters. Making sure they don't starve and aren't killed by monsters are the most important considerations. Your military will shoot monsters if given access to weaponry, and your non-military characters will get to work building houses and workshops, and tilling farms as the player gives them orders to do so.

If you haven't read the giant Development Progress Report page (which we shall keep updated with each major public release of Clockwork Empires), then we urge you to do so.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“No, we are not planning on changing the price. Price changes tend to be confusing for everyone.

Increasing the price upon release is contrary to the long-standing tradition of games getting cheaper as they get older. Decreasing the price upon release effectively makes people pay a premium to participate in early access. While we feel that participating should be valuable to you, we don't want to set that price as something other than what everyone would have to pay anyway.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“The scale of community involvement is pretty heavily dependent on the size of the community.

To start, we spend time on our forums as well as right here on the Steam forums trying to answer questions directly, letting people know when we've logged bugs they find or responding to content or design suggestions. We've been doing this with our internal test group for the last few months, and with the Earliest Access players for the last month, which has benefited us a ton. At a some point, though, the community can get too big to guarantee that level of communication, at which point we might use other tools to answer questions. Reddit for direct conversations, strawpolls to gauge interest in different feature implementations, stuff like that which can help us hear everyone as effectively as possible. We're open to experimenting with this process to find out what works best, and we'll definitely listen to suggestions from players about how to better communicate with the community.

We have had a running development blog for Clockwork Empires since before we officially announced the project, and we will be keeping that up to date with our progress and changelogs for new versions. We will also keep our Clockwork Empires Development Progress report up to date with our monthly releases. People who want more information can visit the Clockwork Empires Portal to see the latest updates on our twitter account for the game, @ClockwrkEmpires).”
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Recommended By Curators

"Clockwork Empires is a game where you to start a civilization from the ground up, with a nice tutorial, a wide variety of materials and groovy graphics."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (39)

August 28


Alpha 42C has now been released to the Steam Experimental Branch. This is a hotfix for some issues in Alpha 42B.

FIXED (42B): foraging aurochs bones
FIXED (42B): cooking steak
FIXED (42B): spawning ore nodes
FIXED (42B): ore survey waypoint text output
FIXED (42B): mineshaft mining
FIXED (42B): a missing zinc ingot
FIXED (42B): fishpeople vandalism crisis scripterror

The Ministry denies all knowledge of Alpha 42B and anybody suggesting that there ever WAS an Alpha 42B shall be [REDACTED]. Please enjoy Alpha 42C.

-- GG.

0 comments Read more

August 27


Alpha 42B has now hit the experimental. Again, this is Windows only, as we continue to restore our Mac build machine (we apologize for the inconvenience!) Major changes include a way to demolish buildings currently being constructed (and a fix for demolishing existing buildings), a workshift system, and some major changes to how workshops and stockpiles work. Enjoy!


colonists now can be assigned workshifts, and players can now force them to work overnight, which makes them very unhappy
rewrote day/night cycle code to allow for different lighting options throughout the day
stockpiles: characters now assess the closest stockpile to them at all times
stockpiles: if a character can merge an incoming item with a container already in a stockpile, they will do so rather than dropping and doing it en route (as it were)
workshops: a character will now do the next available workshop job to them at all times, rather than waiting for the current product type to complete; this also strictly obeys the workshop job order on the production list
clicking on a building under construction pulls up an assignment beacon; the building construction can be cancelled by clicking on that beacon
various typoes/grammatical inconsistencies/spelling errors fixed
civilians no longer pull out knives & sabres in melee combat
occult murder added for death cults
added Prisoner trait
added case for eating "starvation food" (to make a clear hierarchy of food colonists are willing to eat at various levels of hunger)
added warning when burial job cannot complete due to full graveyard
removed the Construction Crate that shows up when constructing a building
balance: Foreign Intervention event has slightly more stringent requirements (so you won't get attacked super early)
balance: slowed down growth/spoilage rate of, and reduced labor required to grow, cabbages and chillies
FIXED (42A): colonists no longer try to "Shoo" vermin
FIXED (42A): debug scripterror in bandit_plunder_major
FIXED: scripterror in some cases when an agent attempts to drop an item due to death
FIXED: if an assignment targeting an obeliskian is cancelled, it can be recreated
FIXED: ghost bandit (after bandit joins your colony)
FIXED: in some cases, non-colonist agents would be unable to path to edge of map
FIXED: error when a cult leader drinks laudanum and decides to leave their cult
FIXED: if starting NCO was assigned to a barracks, soldiers wouldn't train
FIXED: assignment beacons now disappear when an assignment is cancelled from the jobs menu
FIXED: assignment beacon "cancel assignment" X now works
FIXED: cancelling a building assignment now removes the blueprint
FIXED: error when Fishperson would attempt to talk to a piece of human flesh

-- Gaslamp Games

6 comments Read more
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“Victorian Steampunk at its finest”

“I have a feeling it’s going to be something rather special”

“Clockwork Empires makes me uncomfortable”
PC World

About This Game

Take on the role of a Junior Bureaucrat (Colonial Grade), sent forth to seek fame, promotions, and natural resources to feed the ravenous maw of Imperial Industry & Commerce. Build a prosperous colony, fill it with magnificent factories worked by oppressed labourers, and harness the awesome power of steam through fearsome machines invented by determined men and women of Science! History is yours to seize for fame and fortune, for Science, and for the Queen and the glory of the Clockwork Empires!

  • Colonists are simulated with individual personalities, memories, and will be happy or miserable depending on your management.
  • Free-form building: Design your own floorplans & arrange machines, furniture, and decorations as you see fit. (Or stuff everyone into bunkhouses.)
  • Mine ore, chop trees, farm cabbage, brew beer, tin weird caviar and try to keep your people from eating one another!
  • Weird horrible things: Menacing Fishpeople, cults, cannibalism, and more await your colonists.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
    • OS: Windows 7, Operating System of The Lower Classes
    • Processor: Intel i5 Processor or Equivalent ("The Little Scrapper" model)
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVIDIA or AMD card capable of supporting OpenGL 3.2 Core or Above. INTEL HD3000 AND HD4000 GRAPHICS CARDS ARE NOT SUPPORTED.
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Hard Drive: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Lord Palmerstoke's Sound-Reproducing "Old-Timey" Wax Cylinder Driver
    • Additional Notes: INTEL HD3000 AND HD4000 GRAPHICS CARDS ARE NOT SUPPORTED. The Ministry for Video Game Drivers would like to remind you: true Patriots of the Empire always install their latest Graphics Card Drivers before Enjoying A Bracing Video Game, lest the Blackness Consume Us All.
    • OS: Windows 7, 64-Bit Version (By Appointment to Her Majesty)
    • Processor: Intel i7 or above, fashioned of Stout Empire Tin and Burnished of Solid Pewter
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: A Big, Shiny NVIDIA or AMD Graphics Card With Lots of Fans Stuck to It. (Remember: More Fans Means More Steampunk!)
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 8 GB available space
    • Sound Card: "His Masters' Voice" Novorusian All-Wailing Gramaphone Module and Borscht Dispensary
    • Additional Notes: The Ministry for Growth and Monitoring encourages you to buy a Really Big Monitor.
    • OS: OS X 10.9 ("Mavericks") or above
    • Processor: 2013 Generation Macbook Pro or iMac or Mac Pro
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: We're still trying to figure this out. Stay tuned.
    • OS: OS X 10.... what number *is* Yosemite anyway?
    • Processor: 2014 Generation Macbook Pro or iMac or Mac Pro
    • Memory: 16 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVIDIA or AMD Integrated Graphics Parts
    • Additional Notes: Note: some GeForce cards (700m series) are currently experiencing peculiar slowdowns. We are trying to figure this out. Stay tuned!
Helpful customer reviews
8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
6.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 5
Early Access Review
Great concept, needs work.

The combination of steampunk and lovecraftian horror works wonderfully.

The actual gameplay bit is shallow, clunky and repetitive at this stage, but the game has potential enough to merit buying and supporting further development.

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10 of 13 people (77%) found this review helpful
36.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 6
Early Access Review
Ok, straight off let me say I really really like this game. I love the concept, love the art, just really love this game. What i don't love is the game breaking bugs and glitches, however there is great news, its in Early Access, so these will eventually get ironed out.

Now this isn't my first Early Access rodeo, I've gotten burned by some games on here, and I've found some real gems as well. This I really believe will end up being a big hit for the type of game that it is. They just need to get past the usual issues that come with developing a game. And considering the regualr updates I've seen this team roll out, I can say that this won't be one of those cut and run type titles we all have heard about or worse. So know that if you are considering investing in Clockwork Empires you won't be wasting your money.

Other than that I'm sure you have already looked at other reviews, pics and vids, and already have a good idea of what kind of game this is. What you may not have gathered is the awesome sense of humor and just the odd otherworldly attitude that this game offers. Which, if its indictive of the story, will just be awesome. Even if your not sure about purchasing it yet, put it in your wish list and keep an eye on it. I have a feeling that this will be a must have game in the near future.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
4.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 9
Early Access Review
Controls are clunky and menus still need a lot of work, but the game is actually shaping up to be great in comparison to a certain other that I pre-ordered (Folk Tale), which abandoned most of its ambitions. This game had a small release and barely anyone knew it was for pre-access and guess what, it was the right thing to do: it was atrocious when I bought it (I was one of the first), but it's molding to be a feat of a game. Don't buy it yet, but keep an eye on it.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
34.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 21
Early Access Review
First of all, I am a sucker for games set in the 1800s and this sells it for me, I love the steam punky colonial britian it is set in aswell as the lovecraftian things inside which is putely genius to include

the developers are obviously working there best by churning out new content aswell as fixing new bugs, it is not like other early access games which develop for the starting few months/weeks then leaves it unfinished. (*cough* *cough* forest *cough* *cough*)

I reccomend it for those who like the survival/colonial city builder genre

I don't know is the game is meant to be hard or if it's just my bad luck, but I find it rater difficult when a squad of Stahlmarkians and bandits raid my colony at the same time, this is reoccuring through my experience and leaves me annoyed. the game becomes dificult as you only have one NCO to fend of a school of fish people,and I knoe you can recruit normal colonists as militia but it also takes time for immigration to kick in and even then you still get 1 or 2 colonists and my luck making one of the two a poet.

But overall this is a good game even though it being quite dificult
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
22.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 21
Early Access Review
Over the months of ongoing development, the creators of this game have made significant improvements, particularly in game performance. New features are added regularly, and there's a lot to laugh at in this game's flavor. Looks very promising.
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