Lethis - Path of Progress is a city-builder in a victorian steampunk setting.
User reviews:
Recent:
Mixed (12 reviews) - 58% of the 12 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Mostly Positive (400 reviews) - 75% of the 400 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Jun 25, 2015

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About This Game

The Game:


Lethis – Path of Progress is an old school 2D city builder set in a Victorian Steampunk universe called Lethis. You will have to build and manage cities, provide resources for your inhabitants while making sure there are enough workers to sustain your production lines. Trade with others cities, honor the requests of the Emperor and make your citizens happy.

History:


With the discovery of condensed steam as a source of energy, the world of Lethis sees an unprecedented Industrial Revolution. As a result, the Empire enters a period of urbanisation. New cities are built everywhere. This rural exodus leads to new towns in strategical places to ensure the growth of the Empire. A time of great change is also a right time for new discoveries and innovation in science. Cities are built around great monuments like gigantic zeppelin hangars and observatories.

Features:

  • A campaign mode containing 26 missions with 3 difficulty levels
  • A sandbox mode for unlimited fun
  • Over 24 different resources to manage
  • More than 40 different buildings and 4 unique Monuments
  • Over fifteen different characters that roam the city
  • Maps that reach up to 300 per 300 box tiles
  • An amazing soundtrack with over 20 different songs

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7/8/8.1
    • Processor: Intel core 2 duo, 2.0GHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GPU with at least 512 Mb of memory (Does not support Intel Integrated Graphics Cards)
    • Storage: 1500 MB available space
    • Sound Card: Any
    • Additional Notes: THE GAME DOES NOT SUPPORT INTEL INTEGRATED GRAPHICS CARDS
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Mixed (12 reviews)
Overall:
Mostly Positive (400 reviews)
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211 reviews match the filters above ( Mostly Positive)
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
7 of 9 people (78%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
11.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 20
I'm deeply conflicted about giving this game the thumbs down. It does some things very well

Things it sets out to do, and does wonderfully:

* Recreate the experience of playing Pharoah back in the day
* Establish a fun and charming new setting for the classical city-builder series of yore. I would have liked to see more of the Punk aspect of Steampunk, but still.
* Drops the always unsatisfying military aspects of those old games entirely, along with the cartoonish myth parts of the later games that I hated (other people liked them so YMMV on whther that is a good thing)


One main problem is how well it succeeds at the first. It doesn't just recreate the fun parts, it recreates the annoying parts. It also takes away some of the innovations introduced later in the series (like the selective road blocks) which to me is bizarre. It reminds me of all those un-fun times when my carefully crafted city collapsed in a cascade of devolving housing because a walker took the worng turn. Yes you can prevent it through better planning, but IMHO building a city is more fun than carefully herding lemmings. That's one of the reasons the series became such a narrow and unprofitable niche in the first place.

But the real, thumbs-down-earning problem is performance. They've essentially recreated a late 90s/early 2000s game. The graphics are a bit better than back then I suppose, but it seems to me that it shouldn't be heard for a modern computer to run this. Yet loading times are long and stability is terrible. And I'm not using one of the video cards they flat out said they won't support. Since they aren't working on this one anymore, this is as good as it's going to get.

If you really, really loved Pharoah and have a high level of patience for crashes, go ahead and scoop this one up on sale. Otherwise I have to say give it a miss. Which is a shame, since it had tons of potential.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
40.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 18
I bought it a while back and finally installed. It is quite a beautiful game and very relaxing when you are playing right. It's very fun to watch your city grow and its very exciting when you finally get yourself in a place where you can leave the game running while you do homework or whatever. I wouldn't call it EXACTLY casual because there's alot going on all the time and if one of the cogs in your machine pop out the whole thing can fall apart. Also it's pretty nice to not have any violence or anything.
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
350 of 408 people (86%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
6.7 hrs on record
Posted: June 26, 2015
TL;DR: The game's art and music is wonderful, but it doesn't particularly evolve upon the Impressions City Building Series formula. Maybe good for a player new to the series or one lapsed for a long time, but somewhat simple for series veterans.

Edit: All the major bugs I experienced in my initial review have since been fixed.

Lethis is a clear spiritual successor to the games of the Impressions City Building series (Caesar, Pharaoh, Zeus, and Emperor). All of the core mechanics of the series (housing evolution, random walkers, etc.) are here in their usual forms. You build housing, immigrants arrive, and you must supply the housing with food, goods, and services, causing it to evolve and support more workers. You must balance your treasury by importing and exporting goods, and by taxing your citizens. The game plays largely as expected of the series, with the only real surprise being a perplexing inversion of the standard mouse button functions (i.e. left click to examine a building instead of right), with no options that I could find to customize the controls.

The art style is excellent 2-D isometric, with a cartoony style that reminds me of the Ankama Studios games (Wakfu, Dofus, etc.). Walkers have both male and female versions for all the walkers I could see, which is a nice touch. I miss the voice-acted walker dialogue from the old games, but I understand the budgetary constaints that kept them out.The graphics are likely the only area in which Lethis markedly improves upon it's predeccessors.

My major complaints with the game are twofold: the relative simplicity of the game compared to its predeccessors, and the significant raft of launch bugs.

Mechanically, Lethis doesn't particularly add anything to the other entries in the Impressions City Building Series. The game's complexity is slightly above that of Zeus (in my opinion the simplest of the series), but without the military or mythological aspects (the latter of which was a major component of Zeus).

For the most part, quality of life features hover between Zeus and Emperor levels. Buildings can be toggled off individualy, like emperor. Roadblocks exist to limit random walkers, but not emperor's more selective "smart" roadblocks. The one new feature, is that the walker range can be seen when a walker building is placed, which removes much of the guesswork from block design, a feature I wish I could port back to Emperor and Pharoah.

In Zeus, common housing requires one type of food, two types of goods (fleece and olive oil), and four services (wells, athletes, philosophers, and theatres), as well as healthcare, inspectors, taxmen, and police. In Lethis, common houses need two types of food, two types of goods (alcohol and utensils), and five services (wells, laundries, theatres, herbalists, and journalists), as well as exorcists (filling the role of healthcare), inspectors, and taxmen (no police). Elite housing arguably requires less than Zeus, only needing three types of food, two services (spas and cafes), and two goods (garments and jewelry). Compared to Emperor or Pharoah, housing has considerably reduced requirements, and setting up high-level housing blocks is comparatively simple.

Much like Zeus, housing and industrial blocks can be laid out anywhere, except for raw materials, which must be placed on appropriate resources (ore for mines, fertile land for farms, etc), meaning it's fairly trivial to lay out highly optimized blocks, and the map size and resource location is the only true limiting factor. Compare this to Emperor's Feng Shui mechanic, which greatly complicated city design, forcing the player to balance between placing industries in efficient locations, and placing them in auspicious locations.

The only major new mechanics that Lethis adds are the steam mechanic, and the automata, both of which feel somewhat underutilized. Steam acts similar to the resevoirs and aqueducts of Caesar III: steam extractors must be built on vents, and connected to the steam condenser via pipes. However, for the most part, once connected, the steam condenser simply acts like another raw material producer, creating steam capsules which must be delivered to other industries like any other good. Automaton factories must be connected to the steam network via pipes, but no other buildings appeared to need this. If this system were leaned on more, with more industries requiring a pipe connection to function, it would add a much-needed layer of complexity to the city-building, as well as reinforcing the steampunk aesthetic of the game.

The automata are required for elite housing, and in large numbers for monuments, but are similarly underutilized. An elite housing block only ever needs 2 automaton factories to produce all the workers it needs, so only monument missions need a large amount to function. If the game included military elements, automata would be a perfect fit. Alternatively they could be used in other industries.


At the end of the day, I have difficulty recommending Lethis over its spirtitual predeccessors, at least at its full price. At $20, Lethis is priced equally to the bundle on GOG containing Caesar III, Pharoah, Zeus, and all expansions. While no digital copies of Emperor are available, I recently purchased a sealed-in-box copy on ebay for $15 (though the game often runs for $40+). For a player new to the series, Lethis may be a good option. Similarly, veterans of the series who haven't played in years many not be as dissapointed by the relative lack of complexity. However, people who are still playing Emperor and Pharoah regularly won't find the game particularly challenging.
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286 of 357 people (80%) found this review helpful
474 people found this review funny
Recommended
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 11, 2015
My wife spent 100+ hours on this game. Never had so much free time in the last 5 years.
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238 of 303 people (79%) found this review helpful
10 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
12.6 hrs on record
Posted: June 27, 2015
I'm sorry I can't recommend it. YET

I really wanted (and tried hard) to like this game. However there are certain reasons that made me stop playing it.

  1. Unexpectedly quits quite often. Like every half an hour. And for such a small game it takes absurdly long to load on my ssd.

  2. Unlike any other city building games, houses downgrade at the speed of light and once it does, the rest follows because everything in the chain of production gets ♥♥♥♥ed up. You insta loose, game over. Or you try hard to get back up. I am going to give an example how this ruins a game, skip the next paragraph if you don't want to read it.

    Let's say a building has collapsed (you cannot imagine how often they collapse! And if you don't have a good memory, you won't even know what has collapsed because every ruin has the same texture). Imagine your 'well' has collapsed. This is a building you need for upgrading your houses to level 2. All your level 10 buildings (for which you had worked REALLY HARD to build) will downgrade to level 1. This will have a HUGE impact on your population. Within seconds many people will leave your city. Your buildings will stop functioning because of worker shortage. You will try to save the moment by pausing the game. You have 2 options. You either go back to the autosave or if you are no quitter, you try.
    You disable all production buildings 1-by-1 so that your workers will work at the service buildings. This is to ensure that your other houses won't downgrade too. If you had stocked all kinds of products that are needed by your people, this may work. (If you didn't, you better try the autosave because you are ♥♥♥♥ed.) So anyway, your houses will slowly upgrade, you will get your people back. After 20 minutes of trying hard, stress and anger; you get back to where you were. And as soon as you feel the joy of rescuing your city from going down, don't worry the game goes down. Quits unexpectedly. You reopen the game and use the autosave.

  3. The 3rd reason is the 2nd reason again!! This is way too important guys. This game is about levelling up your buildings. You might play for 4 hours and loose all the progress because some delivery guy randomly decided to walk another road and the buildings on that street couldn't get their laundry done, just for ONCE. They will punish you for it. They will abandon your settlement. You can have 40% unemployment and they will keep coming to the city. But if they can't get what they need just for once. Oh they are on their way out bro..

This game could be really fun to play and I would have recommended it if these problems didn't exist. After hours of stubbornly trying to make the game work, I am giving up. I won't be playing it anymore. I will track the updates and revise this review if they ever change things.

PS Since most people are getting this wrong, I felt the need to add here that the main problem isn't the collapsing buildings, it's how fast the buildings level down as a response to the things happening. Collapse was just an example..

Updates to this Review

  • Devs would like us to consider the game as early access, and they are promising updates (especially for crashes). And they have a list of known bugs.

  • Clicking on ruins now gives information on the building that collapsed.
  • I have to admit that this is the kind of a game I've missed a lot. I really enjoy the genre and the graphics are pleasent. I would change this review to recommended as soon as it really is recommendable

  • It's been said that many crashes have been fixed. I didn't have time to test the last patch (3rd of july) yet but the developers are working hard every day and pushing many updates. I am looking forward to change this review to recommended. (After saying this I tried playing again and had a good run for about 30mins until the game crashed again unfortunately..)

VERDICT:

It is your decision if you are up to a fight with the mechanics I have mentioned above. It is manegeable with a more conservative gameplay. You can develop your own strategies and beat the part of the mechanics that I personally dislike. However the game at its current state prohibits you from doing that. It crashes. A lot. Don't buy it before they fix it. It is really tempering when it crashes all the time.

My recommendation is add this game to your wishlist and check back often. Because the pace of updates is fast and I am looking forward to see this game become an awesome one real soon.
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56 of 61 people (92%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
6.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 20, 2015
If you never played Impressions Games’ Pharao, Caesar or Emperor, grab this game at once!
If you did play them, don't expect anything new. At all.

PROS:
- It looks amazing. The style is really cute, the animations are well done and the details are charming. Most walkers come in both genders which is a nice touch.

- The interface is much better than the Impressions games, aesthetically and in terms of layout. Showing the range of all walkers is really, really helpful in planning the city.

- It plays just like Impressions City Building Series.

CONS:
- It plays almost EXACTLY like Impressions City Building Series. I guess you can't do much wrong when you copy a good game (series). But aside from one or two production chains, you have to admit, it's really just a clone with a different skin. It’s actually easier than some of its spiritual predecessors.

- Steam should have played a bigger part. This is the only thing that's different from the Impressions games and there should be many more buildings that need steam. It would be a big step to set Lethis apart from the games it copies. Same with automatons. So much potential wasted…

- The statistics are only accessible when you build a town-hall, much like Banished did it, which is mostly okay. But worker distribution priorities should not be accessible through a window that’s only available when a certain building has workers. If you set the administration priority too low, your town-hall will stop working and you suddenly lose access to that window and then you have to deactivate your entire economy manually just so your town-hall has enough workers and you can change things back.

- The game does not warn you when you are about to quit the session and it doesn’t remind you of saving. If you click quit and you haven’t saved you will lose all your progress. Which is really irritating when you accidently clicked quit instead of resume.

- What are those trees that I cannot remove? Not the unique looking ones, those are cool, but plain old trees that you simply cannot remove. What’s up with that, Triskell?

- There should be more information about a building BEFORE you build it as it isn’t obvious what some of these buildings do. It would be nice if the tooltips showed more than just the price.

- Tooltips are annoyingly slow.

As someone who played the Impressions City Building Series, this game had nothing new to me. The only things I had to figure out were steam and automatons, which are both nice ideas but not developed enough, in my opinion.

Still recommending this game because it’s fun and gorgeous. But sadly, nothing new.
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65 of 75 people (87%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
7.4 hrs on record
Posted: April 3
If you have any Nvidia GTX graphic card stay away from this game, they are not supported. My hours played only represents my persistance against multiple repeated crashes, when trying to open the warehouse or even the Tradecenter. The game devs have refused to fix this condition, even though it seems rampant within the Steam community.
I just do not understand this "dev attitude" given that most of us would rave about how great a game it is! If we could play it. Their response on one thread was "request a refund".. unh? Well I guess that attitude works for them, they got their money considering most of us played long enough before the crash happened to disqualify us for one. Nice going guys, I for one, will never buy another game you produce as it cannot be trusted to play correctly.
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67 of 80 people (84%) found this review helpful
9 people found this review funny
Recommended
12.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 26, 2015
I could tell you of how this game is a solid City Builder in vein of Impressions Games' Titles such as Casesar III, Pharaoh and Zeus. I could tell you of the variety of buildings in the game with an absolute 'motherlode' of content that would have any fan of City Builders to dig up a copy of SimCity IV. However, that's not what made me really like this game. It was the aesthetic, the freaking epic soundtrack that immerses you in the eventually complicated webs of services, residential zones and beautification monuments. Your bustling city full of working citizens from supernatural exorcists to copper miners and shopkeepers. An artstyle that screams originality and further draws you in to this Steam Punk world of industrialized Urban centers. Faes sparkle in the woods outside your city, water pours from pipes jutting out of the edges of the known world while steam bellows from the chasms of magma bellow the surface. Life, though artificial, is mostly certainly alive here. And undoubtedly, that's the best feature I've found in my time with Lethis.
Now that's not to say the game is perfect. You notice very quickly that the soundtrack is the most prevalent noise in the game as sound effects only cue when you click on buildings or citizens. It's eerie that so much activity is occuring in your city but you could hear a pin drop if the music was muted. Personally, I would've appreciated there to be voice actors in the game... not annoying voices that talk every five seconds but rather, Pharaoh's approach or Stronghold where citizens would recite lines of how well their lives are going in game. A minor request, for sure, but it sure would bring a human element to this otherwise lively, bustling world.
All in all, this game is well worth 20 bucks and I can see myself pouring dozens if not hundreds of hours into perfecting my little Victorianesque Steam Punk cities.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vGInM34Zk9A
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63 of 80 people (79%) found this review helpful
Recommended
4.0 hrs on record
Posted: June 26, 2015
[Note: If you're having trouble getting started in the game, check out my basics vid to learn how to "block" build and stop losing all your buildings to ruin.]

First, let me say that this game is gorgeous. I've been playing sim and city-building games since the DOS-age and have really been yearning for a non-casual reboot of 2D games of this genre. As soon as I saw Lethis, I knew I had to buy it. I also asked the developer if they were planning on having official support for mods, but they said no.

My thoughts so far is that this game is pretty enjoyable, though it has a few glitches that need to be ironed out. Here's my breakdown:

ART: Amazing, I can't say it enough. It's like a cross between Studio Ghibli and Breath of Fire III. The steampunk aesthetic is also awesome. The sound is also great, with a score that is soothing and optimistic.

GAMEPLAY: Pretty solid from the perspective of someone who loved games like Pharoah, Caesar, etc. However, from a modern perspective, the game -- particularly the sandbox mode -- could need some added depth. The systems make sense and are consistent, and I love the roadblock mechanic. However, there aren't certain options that should be in the game. For example, in sandbox mode, you apparently can't choose your starting amount of florins (gold), nor can you choose the size of the map or any world generation options.

You also don't appear to have any neighbors in sandbox mode and therefore can't trade. This is highly detrimental and takes out a fun part of the game. Sandbox just plain needs more options. These, I imagine, might be patched in later.

The game is easy to pick up once you understand the roadblock mechanic and how it interacts with services. You will quickly, however, find yourself running out of space.

The game also needs some polish on its localization in English, as some minor things are still untranslated. Triskell Interactive could actually make this a feature of the game and teach us all a little French along the way with some larger, more robust tooltips or an ingame encyclopedia. These would also be welcome considering the game does not have an easy way of telling you exactly what a building does before you build it. Presumably you encounter the buildings during the tutorial, but I got bored of doing them after the fourth one.

PERFORMANCE: Game runs like a dream most of the time, but I've run into a couple of freezes/crashes when Alt+Tabbing. Also, if you load into a map and the actual "world" doesn't generate, you're just going to have to restart your game. That usually fixes it. Fortunately, the game is quick to load.

OVERALL: I'll give this game an overall positive rating. It's got a little ways to go to be a great game, but the base of it is really solid. I know I'll get several hours of play out of it. If they add formal support for modding, this game could actually be really great.

See my gameplay vid if you're undecided or having trouble with the game. I go over the basics in it.

https://youtu.be/a9LEdkHcYKM
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40 of 45 people (89%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
12.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 5, 2015
Lethis - Path of Progress is the game that brought back my memories of the golden-age of Sierra (Caesar 3, Pharaoh, Zeus, etc.). I'm a fan of these city-building games, very simple to learn but hard to master. Sure, Lethis has its bugs and whatnot, but I am enjoying the game very much, and for that, I'd recommend the game.
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Recently Posted
Krymore
51.3 hrs
Posted: September 30
Once you get the hang of arranging your first few working class residents an meeting their needs, the game is a cake walk. Worth 50 hours of play time though. Tutorials are intuitive gives you a good sense of how to play the game. Would recommend
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duffy
4.2 hrs
Posted: September 30
This game is pretty annoying. the concept is not bad. but the game is not so constant. the store is full, but the shops has no delivery (hell know why?) what cause the nearby houses to decrease. decreased building has less inmate, cause less worker, so more factories shutting down. one little bug, and the chain reaction is on. annoying. a house block is surrounded by theaters, but still complaining about it, and not improving. the AI of the employee in this game is zero. I gave 4 hours to this game from my life, but the conclusion is, I'm not satisfied and not recommend this game.
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Marky2409
3.8 hrs
Posted: September 18
Enjoyed it till the second time I played it. Opened it up to find the mouse pointer stops halfway down the screen & won't go any further. Looked up the problem & couldn't find a solution for it which I was extremely disapointed about. For this reason I can't recommend the game.
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SKIV
22.6 hrs
Posted: August 29
Good game, feeds my nostalgia :) devs are helpful in fixing problems if you have any ;)
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ShamanSenpai
4.9 hrs
Posted: August 21
Lethis - Path of Progress doesn't quite live up to the standards of its inspiration; the old Impressions City Builder series. It has a lot less of everything and the steampunk skin doesn't make up for that at all.

I would recommend going back and replaying Caesar 3, Zeus, Pharoh and Emperor instead for now.
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camillea
86.3 hrs
Posted: August 7
Similar to Caesar III/Pharaoh?Emperor games with a steam-age twist. There are less building types and the storyline is not really relevant or makes any differences (It doesn't matter who is the emperor or wht they think). It is enjoyable but too long and some of the episodes are very similar. It felt like having de ja vue at times. I did finish it though. Overall, definately worth the price.
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Tides
0.2 hrs
Posted: July 26
DO NOT BUY!

tha game is broken and the devs do not want to put in the work to fix it nor will they let the community fix it. this is explained by the devs in the first post in the discussion board too.

this is sad because the game is actually a pretty good old school builder
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Woody
78.3 hrs
Posted: July 18
My first review on Steam. Finally a game that comes close to my favorite Impressions classics. And I haven't had a problem running it on a GTX 970M. The images on the store page don't do the graphics justice. If you liked those old classics - BUY IT!

After 57 hours I've had a total of 3 crashes. The autosave loaded fine. The curser problem was the only problem I've had. Easy fix - set the app properties to "DIsable display scaling on high DPI settings" on the compatibility tab.
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