Buy votes, make free trade agreements, manipulate the IMF, extract wealth, ruin everything. The map is upside-down.
User reviews:
Overall:
Mixed (27 reviews) - 55% of the 27 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Nov 25, 2014

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Reviews

“It’s a turn-based, competitive strategy game about dominating the planet through economic means: by buying votes, extracting wealth via factories and mines, and backstabbing your opponents... seems very smart.”
RockPaperShotgun

“[A] brilliantly nasty imperialism simulator”
IndieGames

“Many strategy games have featured traditional colonialism and warfare but few have explored the brutal reality of greed and indirect political control in the 21st century.”
Games for Change

About This Game

Ruin everything.
You are a banker. You want to extract as much wealth from the world as possible--or, at least, more than everyone else. You will manipulate the global economy in order to siphon money into your secret Swiss bank account. Whoever has the most Swiss money in 12 turns wins the game.

Play solo against the AI or multiplayer against people who will imminently cease to be your friends.

Buy votes.
Unlike most strategy games, you will never have access to armies and never directly control territory. Instead, you will spread your influence throughout the globe by purchasing votes in parliament, or selling your votes to incite a military coup. You always share power with your rivals, waiting for the moment when you can backstab them.

Make free trade agreements.
Re-route industrial wealth throughout the world, from Mines to Factories via exploitative trade agreements. Remember: your goal is to make a profit, NOT to improve the world.

Manipulate the IMF.
Control the International Monetary Fund to force policy decisions without a regional parliament's approval. Basically, screw over your opponents without them being able to do a thing about it.

The map is upside-down
Because why not.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Storage: 80 MB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7 or 8
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Storage: 80 MB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: OS X 10.6
    • Storage: 80 MB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: OS X 10.10
    • Storage: 80 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: May require some minor resolution adjustments
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Overall:
Mixed (27 reviews)
Recently Posted
Underanger
( 3.4 hrs on record )
Posted: June 21
extract, sell, kill the planet
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Nøkkenbuer
( 4.2 hrs on record )
Posted: June 4
Overview
Neocolonialism is an excellent game whose brevity and simplicity belies a profound critique of capitalism. Designed as a "Marxist strategy game", Neocolonialism challenges the player to ruin the world by playing as a member of the bourgeoisie. In that capacity, the player must invest their capital throughout the world to purchase votes, which is then utilized to accumulate more capital. The player wins by possessing the most capital in their Swiss bank account by the end of the twelfth turn, which is achieved by liquidating their assets (namely, purchased votes). At the end of twelve turns (each turn comprising three phases), the world has been ruined, ostensibly due to the consequences that capitalism inexorably produces.

Analysis
The Marxist influence in Neocolonialism is obvious to anyone familiar with Marxist theory. Capital is dead labor and it is invested in order to generate living labor, which is then transformed into more dead labor and accumulated as such. This process, called capital accumulation, is inherent in capitalism. The state, as an organ of class rule, is used by owners of capital (capitalists) to facilitate their accumulation of capital through corruption. This is an unavoidable consequence of capitalism precisely because capital is what determines economic power and it is the owners of that capital who ultimately own society, including institutions such as the state. This ownership by the bourgeoisie (capitalists as a class) is due to their ownership of the means of production, which forms the productive and economic base for society. The bourgeoisie acts in this way due to their shared class interest, namely the accumulation and utilization of capital to reproduce the material conditions of capitalism and their favorable position therein.

Neocolonialism succinctly encapsulates how capitalism as a system compels economic actors to perform according to the rules of that system. As a player, you are compelled by the rules of the game to invest and accumulate capital, despite knowing that the result of playing the game entails everyone losing regardless of who the winner may eventually be. Nevertheless, you compete with other players according to those rules because your success depends on it. This is similar to how capitalists in the real world compete in the global market in accumulating capital and liquidating it into offshore bank accounts, despite how playing by the rules of capitalism entails disastrous results.

For that reason, it makes no sense to blame this or that capitalist, just as it is absurd to blame the politicians they bought, because they are all performing rationally according to the rules of capitalism. The culpability is in the system itself: the consequences of capitalism are caused by the system of rules which govern the actions of its participants, not by the participants who are simply following those rules. Therefore, a rational response to this is to change the system of rules itself, not to simply depose this or that actor.

Neocolonialism illustrates this by its very existence: the world is ruined ultimately because of the nature of the game, not simply because one chooses to participate in it. Regardless of whether the player personally participates in the game, others invariably will and they will be compelled by the same rules that any player would face, and it is those very rules which are to blame for the results of playing the game so long as there are players compelled to play it (and unaware of an alternative).

But why is it called Neocolonialism? When the player decides to invest their capital, the most prudent initial investments are those which cost the least capital. The capital cost of a region is principally determined by its economic development and infrastructure. Lesser developed regions will therefore cost less capital to invest. These are the necessary conditions for neocolonialism: capitalists engage in economic imperialism by exploiting less developed regions to maximize profits and use the economic power they accumulate through this exploitation to control the development of those regions, which is done order to guarantee that the conditions in those regions serve their interests. In the game, players demonstrate this by investing in the least developed regions, accumulating capital through those investments, and utilizing the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to either accelerate capital accumulation or impede regional development. In doing so, players essentially simulate Marxian theory of neocolonialism.

Recommended?
I definitely recommend Neocolonialism to anyone interested in Eurogame-style strategy games, especially those familiar with Marxist theory. Although the game design is rather simple, and the game options are very limited, Neocolonialism nevertheless provides an enjoyable and educational experience with an inevitably bittersweet end.

Would I recommend Neocolonialism for its current retail price of $3.99 (USD)? If you have money to spare, you really want the game, and you are aware of its quality, then I don't think you will regret your purchase. If you have reservations, however, or you would prefer to not spend that much money on the game, then maybe you should attempt to acquire Neocolonialism through other means, such as winning it on a giveaway site or purchasing it when it is bundled or on sale. I was given this game by a friend who knew I would like it, and I certainly did. Maybe you will, too.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
xpk...
( 1.4 hrs on record )
Posted: July 7, 2015
"Neocolonialism is a game about finance bankers attempting to extract as much wealth from the world as possible"

Antisemitism in a Nutshell :facepalm:
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Jun55
( 0.1 hrs on record )
Posted: June 8, 2015
"The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive."

Lmao an instant downvote for ya
Helpful? Yes No Funny
mshrifteylik
( 0.2 hrs on record )
Posted: June 1, 2015
Even in the lowest resolution that game wouldn't adjust to my Macbook screen.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Mongoloid Mike
( 0.1 hrs on record )
Posted: April 29, 2015
You've got to be kidding me.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
MightyIrko
( 0.7 hrs on record )
Posted: April 25, 2015
Consider the single player as an extended form of a tutorial as it is only good for learning and AI names (Thatcher has been the prime minister of Africa, yay!). Where the game really takes off is the multiplayer where you can form coalitions and chat with others. The UI could have been better (e.g. adding a color on the province when a prime minister is in charge because late game there are too many icons and it may become a bit confusing) and with a little more effort this could easily be worth the 10€ price tag, this way I would say wait for sale/bundle.

Singleplayer 2/10
Multiplayer 7,5/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Viktoria
( 0.1 hrs on record )
Posted: April 22, 2015
i love the music :D
Helpful? Yes No Funny
severbeck
( 26.9 hrs on record )
Posted: March 24, 2015
Excellent game for multiplayer. Single player is only really good for learning how to play.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
stambo
( 0.6 hrs on record )
Posted: February 21, 2015
First of all, do not get this game if you are not intending to play it with other people. The AI in this game is horrible and gives you no challenge.

Secondly, this game is slow, and I'm not talking about how a match plays out but the game itself is incredibly slow. It appears to be constantly calculating something, however as there isn't really much to calculate its very puzzling why this game is so laggy. And it also appears to be prone to crashes.

The "inverted" world map serves no purpose other than to let you know how edgy the developer is by making you think aobut the world view and how it is centered on the developed world. Well, I don't think anybody who'll play this doesn't know this already and the map will just make it harder for you to find the regions you're looking for, because it won't be in the place you're used to.

I actually remember seeing this game and its developer in some video a couple years back and the way he described it made me excited for it. The final version which is at last here does leave a lot to be desired for however. As I alluded to at the start, if you're going to play this with other people you might find some enjoyment here, other than that I can't really recommended it.

4 / 10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
Recommended
4.2 hrs on record
Posted: June 4
Overview
Neocolonialism is an excellent game whose brevity and simplicity belies a profound critique of capitalism. Designed as a "Marxist strategy game", Neocolonialism challenges the player to ruin the world by playing as a member of the bourgeoisie. In that capacity, the player must invest their capital throughout the world to purchase votes, which is then utilized to accumulate more capital. The player wins by possessing the most capital in their Swiss bank account by the end of the twelfth turn, which is achieved by liquidating their assets (namely, purchased votes). At the end of twelve turns (each turn comprising three phases), the world has been ruined, ostensibly due to the consequences that capitalism inexorably produces.

Analysis
The Marxist influence in Neocolonialism is obvious to anyone familiar with Marxist theory. Capital is dead labor and it is invested in order to generate living labor, which is then transformed into more dead labor and accumulated as such. This process, called capital accumulation, is inherent in capitalism. The state, as an organ of class rule, is used by owners of capital (capitalists) to facilitate their accumulation of capital through corruption. This is an unavoidable consequence of capitalism precisely because capital is what determines economic power and it is the owners of that capital who ultimately own society, including institutions such as the state. This ownership by the bourgeoisie (capitalists as a class) is due to their ownership of the means of production, which forms the productive and economic base for society. The bourgeoisie acts in this way due to their shared class interest, namely the accumulation and utilization of capital to reproduce the material conditions of capitalism and their favorable position therein.

Neocolonialism succinctly encapsulates how capitalism as a system compels economic actors to perform according to the rules of that system. As a player, you are compelled by the rules of the game to invest and accumulate capital, despite knowing that the result of playing the game entails everyone losing regardless of who the winner may eventually be. Nevertheless, you compete with other players according to those rules because your success depends on it. This is similar to how capitalists in the real world compete in the global market in accumulating capital and liquidating it into offshore bank accounts, despite how playing by the rules of capitalism entails disastrous results.

For that reason, it makes no sense to blame this or that capitalist, just as it is absurd to blame the politicians they bought, because they are all performing rationally according to the rules of capitalism. The culpability is in the system itself: the consequences of capitalism are caused by the system of rules which govern the actions of its participants, not by the participants who are simply following those rules. Therefore, a rational response to this is to change the system of rules itself, not to simply depose this or that actor.

Neocolonialism illustrates this by its very existence: the world is ruined ultimately because of the nature of the game, not simply because one chooses to participate in it. Regardless of whether the player personally participates in the game, others invariably will and they will be compelled by the same rules that any player would face, and it is those very rules which are to blame for the results of playing the game so long as there are players compelled to play it (and unaware of an alternative).

But why is it called Neocolonialism? When the player decides to invest their capital, the most prudent initial investments are those which cost the least capital. The capital cost of a region is principally determined by its economic development and infrastructure. Lesser developed regions will therefore cost less capital to invest. These are the necessary conditions for neocolonialism: capitalists engage in economic imperialism by exploiting less developed regions to maximize profits and use the economic power they accumulate through this exploitation to control the development of those regions, which is done order to guarantee that the conditions in those regions serve their interests. In the game, players demonstrate this by investing in the least developed regions, accumulating capital through those investments, and utilizing the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to either accelerate capital accumulation or impede regional development. In doing so, players essentially simulate Marxian theory of neocolonialism.

Recommended?
I definitely recommend Neocolonialism to anyone interested in Eurogame-style strategy games, especially those familiar with Marxist theory. Although the game design is rather simple, and the game options are very limited, Neocolonialism nevertheless provides an enjoyable and educational experience with an inevitably bittersweet end.

Would I recommend Neocolonialism for its current retail price of $3.99 (USD)? If you have money to spare, you really want the game, and you are aware of its quality, then I don't think you will regret your purchase. If you have reservations, however, or you would prefer to not spend that much money on the game, then maybe you should attempt to acquire Neocolonialism through other means, such as winning it on a giveaway site or purchasing it when it is bundled or on sale. I was given this game by a friend who knew I would like it, and I certainly did. Maybe you will, too.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
3.4 hrs on record
Posted: June 21
extract, sell, kill the planet
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
306 of 407 people (75%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 1, 2014
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lOJPUfJxPws

After one hour of play the game was complete with a very easily obtained victory. There wasn't really much of a point to play the game over again because it only really has a one-game charm. Not really worth $10.

The point of the game is to ruin the world. When you win, the world is ruined and you win. When you lose, the world is ruined and, well exact same title screen. The game mechanics are unique, but that doesn't contribute to quality gameplay. It feels like it might make an excellent board game.

But the general theme of the video game and implementation is poor. It's one of those games that is designed with a social conscience and you're almost certain they're more concerned about getting across their point than make the game feel fun.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
66 of 93 people (71%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
7.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 3, 2014
The correct name of this game should be :
Corporativism

=============

REVIEW :

ABOUT THE GAME:
It is not like "Plague Inc. Evolved", where you play against the people of the world. No, here, you and the other players are competing each other to get as much money they can extract from each region.
Play agaisnt the IA is an easy win. The fun is on multiplayer, where you don't know who will vote to whom; and you can chat privately with other players to work together (temporaly, of course) or join forces to go against another player.

TURN ESTRUCTURE: Buy votes. With the votes bought, each player choose who will be a minister of that region; if you are elected, then you decide to build mines, or factories, or free trade agreement. If another player is elected, he/she propose, and you vote "Yes/No". That finish a turn.
Even when it's unstated, the minister is not the player itself, it is "controlled by the player". You can have a minister in each region of the world, at same time.

GRAPHICS: Horrible. I know, it's a "Turn based strategy game" and graphics are not important. But they are really ugly. About the map "upside-down", you get used to it in 5 minutes.
About the interface, the menus are well placed, simple, and fast to use. Rarely you have to click 2 times to make 1 thing.

SHOULD YOU BUY?: Depends. If you are planning to play alone, I think you are not going to get much fun, because the IA is easy to beat. If you are planning to play online, then, yes, worth it. Would be awesome to have a 4-pack or a 6-pack, to invite friends and family.


=============

ABOUT THE CONCEPT: Technically speaking, I should not call it "neocolonialism", because here you are buying votes on poor countries, and then make them grow up, creating factories and mines (you can destroy them too). When you cashout, the countries keep all the things you created.
Here, the poor countries are not working for a bigger one (like "colonies"). Here, there is no debt, nor loans. So, more than a banker, you are a powerful (and corrupted) business magnate, with enough power to buy votes, control the IMF and propose free trade agreements.

So, you may find the name misleading; but don't care, the game shows a very bad side effect of the current system, where people with enough money may get corrupted and decide over what happens in the world, buy politicians, and force the countries to take decisions that are only good for this person business. Even agaisnt the people benefit.

Like I said, I consider it a "Corporativism" simulator.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
35 of 44 people (80%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 21, 2015
First of all, do not get this game if you are not intending to play it with other people. The AI in this game is horrible and gives you no challenge.

Secondly, this game is slow, and I'm not talking about how a match plays out but the game itself is incredibly slow. It appears to be constantly calculating something, however as there isn't really much to calculate its very puzzling why this game is so laggy. And it also appears to be prone to crashes.

The "inverted" world map serves no purpose other than to let you know how edgy the developer is by making you think aobut the world view and how it is centered on the developed world. Well, I don't think anybody who'll play this doesn't know this already and the map will just make it harder for you to find the regions you're looking for, because it won't be in the place you're used to.

I actually remember seeing this game and its developer in some video a couple years back and the way he described it made me excited for it. The final version which is at last here does leave a lot to be desired for however. As I alluded to at the start, if you're going to play this with other people you might find some enjoyment here, other than that I can't really recommended it.

4 / 10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
27 of 42 people (64%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 3, 2014
This is a great turn-based strategy game that feels like Risk - IRL Edition. The interface is a bit clunky but after a few games (and definitely do the tutorials) you'll be playing the world's wellbeing like a champ! Also, every turn there is a new tragedy to deal with and this can feel a little RND but really does add to the challenge and requires that you be a little more fungible with your strategies. I haven't played any online games yet but I imagine the game could only get more interesting with the addition of a human dynamic. My one criticism is that I'd love to see more hi-res and interesting icons/symbols with a slightly better system of laying out the information on the worldmap. Perhaps even having a zoom feature and moving the camera around to each election. I feel this would really add some nice visual feedback to the game. The mechanics though are unique and engaging enough to definitely play this rough little gem! The game is worth it just for the alternative look at world politics but keeps you hanging around for the enjoyable gameplay.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
35 of 60 people (58%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 3, 2014
Neocolonialism is relevant as one of the few political games in existence (one that doesn't simply use it's political theme as a visual motif). This reason alone makes the game worth checking out, but on top of that it offers a kind of Risk/board game fun between friends that makes it worth playing/replaying.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
13 of 22 people (59%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: December 9, 2014
Been a fan since the Humble store release. A fun, devious game about ruining the world for your own profit. Unsparing in its critique of corporate globalization, and ridiculously entertaining in a Diplomacy-esque "are you sure you still want to be friends with these people" kind of way. Definitely worth the (modest) investment for fans of strategy games and those with a pretty dark sense of humor.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
12 of 25 people (48%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
1.7 hrs on record
Posted: December 3, 2014
This strategy, turn based game was awesome, and I will definitely play it over and over again! The single player is a lot of fun, but it is much more fun when playing against friends and family and being able to destroy all of their hardwork! I would definitely recommend this game to all!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 3 people (33%) found this review helpful
Recommended
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: April 25, 2015
Consider the single player as an extended form of a tutorial as it is only good for learning and AI names (Thatcher has been the prime minister of Africa, yay!). Where the game really takes off is the multiplayer where you can form coalitions and chat with others. The UI could have been better (e.g. adding a color on the province when a prime minister is in charge because late game there are too many icons and it may become a bit confusing) and with a little more effort this could easily be worth the 10€ price tag, this way I would say wait for sale/bundle.

Singleplayer 2/10
Multiplayer 7,5/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny