In this city-building strategy game, you control a group of exiled travelers who decide to restart their lives in a new land. They have only the clothes on their backs and a cart filled with supplies from their homeland. The townspeople of Banished are your primary resource.
User reviews:
Recent:
Very Positive (242 reviews) - 86% of the 242 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Very Positive (19,486 reviews) - 90% of the 19,486 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Feb 18, 2014

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About This Game

In this city-building strategy game, you control a group of exiled travelers who decide to restart their lives in a new land. They have only the clothes on their backs and a cart filled with supplies from their homeland.

The townspeople of Banished are your primary resource. They are born, grow older, work, have children of their own, and eventually die. Keeping them healthy, happy, and well-fed are essential to making your town grow. Building new homes is not enough—there must be enough people to move in and have families of their own.

Banished has no skill trees. Any structure can be built at any time, provided that your people have collected the resources to do so. There is no money. Instead, your hard-earned resources can be bartered away with the arrival of trade vessels. These merchants are the key to adding livestock and annual crops to the townspeople’s diet; however, their lengthy trade route comes with the risk of bringing illnesses from abroad.

There are twenty different occupations that the people in the city can perform from farming, hunting, and blacksmithing, to mining, teaching, and healing. No single strategy will succeed for every town. Some resources may be more scarce from one map to the next. The player can choose to replant forests, mine for iron, and quarry for rock, but all these choices require setting aside space into which you cannot expand.

The success or failure of a town depends on the appropriate management of risks and resources.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Win XP SP3 / Vista / Windows 7 / Windows 8
    • Processor: 2 GHz Intel Dual Core processor
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB DirectX 9.0c compatible card (shader model 2)
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 250 MB available space
    • Sound Card: Any
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7 / Windows 8
    • Processor: Intel Core i5 processor (or greater)
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB DirectX 10 compatible card
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Storage: 250 MB available space
    • Sound Card: Any
Customer reviews
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Recent:
Very Positive (242 reviews)
Overall:
Very Positive (19,486 reviews)
Recently Posted
Aquinas
14.3 hrs
Posted: August 27
7.5/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Bart
9.4 hrs
Posted: August 27
Best played in cold weather
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Mellow
17.8 hrs
Posted: August 27
Personally I really enjoy this game. It's a relaxed paced game (you can speed it up if you want to though). Thing is, your society can collapse in a relaxed pace as well, and there is nothing you can do NOW that can directly fix it.

Around every 40 years in game time, people start to die of old age (when they are 70 or 80). This means less people to work the field, so it can be difficult to get enough food. But child labour is frowned upon apparentaly, so they don't work, but die of starvation. So you make sure laborours are assigned from one job to another, say, herbalist from farmer. BOOM, yellow fever comes around the corner. No herbs anymore, people die. After something like that, slowly rebuilding what is left of your population is very rewarding.

Overall, once you have a surpluss of people and resources, trading becomes easy and life settles into a relaxed pace. But getting there might be a challenge.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
That_llama_in_a_tuxedo
4.5 hrs
Posted: August 27
This game is honestly brutal. But that is what makes it fun.You will be re starting five to ten times when you first get the game trying to survive winter. The game isnt the best looking which is fine as it can run on pretty much anything. If you want to play a great game for the plane or train this is perfect to run even on a non-gaming laptop. The best part is when you finally get a village to work how you want too and you can just start expanding how you want too. But god help you if you decide to turn Distasters on.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
MrTestOne
32.3 hrs
Posted: August 26
Rating: 7/10

Building up economy and growing the city is nicely done. There is plenty of room for settings and ways how to keep you busy. While it clearly is a good game, it has some issues with bugs, strange behaviour of citizens (e.g. my whole town burned down, while all citizens were stuck at a river to get water. When fire went out, due to all destroyed buildings, 2/3 of population died of hunger, because they were too long stuck at river).

So there is still some room for improvements, which can raise the title easily to a 8/10 or even 9/10.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
MrGhandi
14.9 hrs
Posted: August 26
Really enjoyed the town-building and worker allocation, but the farming hooked me. So suspenseful and rewarding to see how the crops do every year. Will the early snow decimate the harvest? Is it just one snow or is winter coming early? Do you have enough food in storage to survive the bad harvest? OR maybe spring comes early, winter arrives late, and you have an unbelievably productive harvest!

The thing that made me stop playing and look for more was that once you figure out the formula to balancing food and population growth, there is little more to challenge you. I hope that a future release expands on the late-game. Maybe once you get large enough your run into competing towns and property rights become an issue? Maybe some light conflict? Send raids, set up defense. But the more men you have fighting the fewer you have providing for the town, so negotiation with the other town may be worth it. Dunno.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
kelann1027
3.3 hrs
Posted: August 26
My village keeps dying. Anyone have an good tips to help me out Please! Also Thanks!! ;-)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Ekspresi
7.3 hrs
Posted: August 25
Purchase this game, worth for killing a time.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Algor Mortis
10.7 hrs
Posted: August 25
good
Helpful? Yes No Funny
~Deus Vult~
54.4 hrs
Posted: August 25
Great game! Resource management at its best, city planning at its best, soundtrack at its best and fully customisable user interface. Great mods also adds to the flavor, I especially recommend the medieval pack-mod.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
47 of 60 people (78%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
24.5 hrs on record
Posted: August 12
Banished is a strange game. It has a great aesthetic - especially in the winter - that is compelling enough to keep you coming back for more. There's nothing quite like the sight of your little village covered in a blanket of snow, smoke billowing out of every chimney. Aesthetic, however, isn't really enough to hold your focus for too long. Other reviews go into great detail about what you need to do to succeed but it can be summed up in two parts - gather resources and breed.

At first this can be a fun balancing act to play out. Too much breeding and you're resources will start to dry up fast, too little and you'll struggle to get those resources quick enough to sustain your population much less grow it. Once you find the happy medium that works for your village to can plug along fairly well, at least for a while. Banished is big on throwing natural disasters at you - or at least it was for me. In three consecutive playthroughs I had things moving along wonderfully when a tornado would touch down and level my town. My population was decimated and despite my best efforts all three towns eventually died out.

Overall, that's the issue with Banished. It's not so much a city builder so much as it's a city survival game. The AI doesn't help, either, as citizens of your town can be frustratingly foolish. More than once I watched a citizen wander into the forest looking for food only to starve to death out in the wilderness when there was a surplus of food sitting in the barn for them. An even worse example for you: I once had a town starve to death despite it being flushed with productive farms. Over half of my population were farmers, herdsman, and fishermen and they still somehow found a way to starve to death, all of them. There's nothing more bleak and yet ironic than watching a farmer harvest his crops, the only person residing in a town of once over 50, slowly starving to death. And rest assured, the farmer died just like all of his friends and family, starving to death in the middle of his field.Throw a tornado or fire in on top of that, leveling a perfectly good town in its prime, and the game can become painfully frustrating.

Banished is not a bad game but like most of the reviews on here, I'll tell you the truth - there's not a lot to it. You can build a sprawling metropolis if you want but there's nothing to do with it. There's no end-game, nothing to strive for beyond trying to surive as long as possible. You can't go out and get revenge on the town that kicked out your founders or even interact with other villages. Your only contact to the outside world are solitary traders, the only evidence of life outside of your village. This game could be easily be cast as settling another planet for the first time, it's that empty. If you can get it on sale for cheap, buy it. It is fun at first and, like I said, can be beautiful in a quaint, colonial kind of way. Just understand that after a while it will lose its spice.
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24 of 35 people (69%) found this review helpful
24 people found this review funny
Recommended
296.8 hrs on record
Posted: August 1
...can't review...

...playing banished...

...send food...

...2,500 units should be enough.
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
Recommended
65.0 hrs on record
Posted: August 16
Dude, this game is not easy. You think OK I can keep a bunch of little pixel people alive. Yeah it’s harder than it looks. Banished is a delicate balance between population control and food production and it takes time to master. Don’t be upset if your first few settlements go up in smoke (sometimes literally), this game is about what have you learned. You don’t fail with your settlements you learn new ways of what works and what doesn’t. There are some helpful guides out there that give you some great tips on making your life and the lives of your pixel people better. Here are some of mine.
~ Be mindful how many houses you build. But just enough to house your people but not enough to let them breed out of control.

~ FOOD! Food is your number one enemy in this game.

~Firewood, you don’t need it much in the summer. But don’t let your little people freeze in the winter.

~ If you have people die, take workers off things like mining, timber cutting and blacksmithing (if you have a stock pile of tools) and move them to food.

~ Trade, trading is a key backbone to this game.

~Chickens are your best friends. Cows and sheep take forever to grow but chickens are a good and quick food sorce.

~ AOE players, throw out everything you know from AOE it DOES NOT APPLY HERE.
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8 of 10 people (80%) found this review helpful
Recommended
5.8 hrs on record
Posted: August 1
Alright, let's establish what Banished is NOT.

It's not a city builder like Sim City, it's not a life sim like Sims, it's not a survival/crafting game like Don't starve and it's not an econ sim like Industry Giant. It's a little bit of everything, but Anno on a micro scale might be a pretty fitting description.

You basically start the game with a few settlers and various resources/buildings established. You do not have ANY goals, your only goal is to survive and thrive. To do that you're going to build houses, establish an economy and "produce" new settlers.

That means cutting wood, gathering/hunting/harvesting food, so your citizens won't starve to death, creating building materials, chopping firewood, so your citizens won't freeze to death during winter, and carefully establishing houses and increasing your population, so your city won't simply die out. Blacksmiths create tools for your citizens to work with, trade posts let you trade materials, etc.

All in all there is a lot to do. You need to balance your need for expansion with a sustainable economy. If you have too many citizens and not enough of them producing food, then your city will simply starve, which will usually lead to a chain reaction of you losing the game, since dying citizens can't produce more food, but if you take too many citizens away from other production like fire wood, hunting, tailoring or anything concerned with blacksmithing, you will have other issues to contend with. The game can spiral out of control quickly, which is what makes it appealing, I guess. The larger your city grows, the more sprawling your infrastructure becomes, the more challenging the game gets.

I would also definitely recommend the Colonial mod, which opens up the game immensely with new buildings.

Not so great stuff: The UI could need improvements, several buildings share "jobs", so it's a bit finnicky to assign citizens to a specific building. It's also very hard to see dependencies of buildings. You want to build X, but you don't realize that you need to produce Y first...only having icons is not so great. Apart from that I don't have many complaints.

Now the obligatory game report:

Started my city, everything went pretty well, produced food en masse, unfortunately did not realize that my citizens were getting too old, so my 40 peeps city went down to below 30 pretty quickly. Thankfully my Banished were still in a happy mood and procreated happily. Still that took over 10 years or so, then my food supplies started dwindling, all the while my old guys kept dying, and I still could not make all my children work...damn it. Vicious cycle. After having burnt through about 6,000 units of food (a lot) I almost got back on track, but then my city was ravaged by a disease. I was able to erect a hospital in time and got that under control as well. After that things started to go smoothly again. I played for about 31 years, then I got "bored".

Banished is a great game, but lacks longevity, unless you are content to just simply sand box your way for hours upon hours. Still, I liked it and getting 5 hours out of it for a product on sale makes it worth it to me :D
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
82.4 hrs on record
Posted: July 31
I decided to delete my old review and post a new one because I've had some time to reconsider what I have to say about this game.

First off, it is still a fantastic game. There's a lot of challenge, there's a lot of ways that you can go about building your settlements, and there's always a unique game to be had since every map and every starting location on said maps is always different. In other words, it's as unique and interesting as a game like this can be in terms of gameplay (and it is pretty damn unique and interesting).

The mechanics are great. They also force you to consider everything (public health and happiness, firewood, food, etc etc) from day one and keep track of all of it all the time. This is a big part of what makes this game challenging and fun - it forces you to build a city, not just constructing buildings.

The trade is also surprisingly important. Yes, you can get by without it, but it does help a lot as well as opening up things that would otherwise be closed to you (livestock, increased variety of food, etc).

I could go on, but without you (the reader) playing this game, it would be terribly dull.

Overall, it's a very solid game and I would highly recommend it. As others have mentioned, there is a lack of content such as Single Player Missions (e.g. working towards a specific goal, or doing something like what Ceaser III of Pharoah did), but this will not stop you from enjoying dozens of hours of solid, fun gameplay.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
Recommended
25.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 21
"Banished" is what I would be if this town was real and I was leader of these people.

...Those poor people.
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5 of 8 people (63%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
5.8 hrs on record
Posted: August 11
the game is really nice but ..... they need to stop dying after first winter
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
8.8 hrs on record
Posted: August 17
Fun and challenging, especially in the beginning. There's a good mod community developing content as well. My only qualm is that the game can get repetitive after a while and I do not feel that there is a ton of replayability. If you are ok with the challenge of keeping people alive for as long as possible, go for it. But if you think that would get stale after a while, feel free to skip this one.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
63.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 20
Great village builder. Limited diversity and lack of multiplayer makes you get tired of it pretty fast. Buy it, especially if it's on sale.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 9
All in All a good game
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