Empires of the Undergrowth is a fast-paced ant colony strategy game. Underground you excavate your nest, construct tunnels and chambers to store resources and raise your brood, then venture above ground. Here, your ants will claim territory, gather resources and overwhelm fearsome foes.
Recent Reviews:
Very Positive (138) - 90% of the 138 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
All Reviews:
Very Positive (6,047) - 94% of the 6,047 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Dec 1, 2017
Developer:
Publisher:

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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?

“Since releasing our first demo we have received mountains of feedback from the community, which has been constantly shaping the game’s core mechanics and features. We feel this has ultimately resulted in a much better game and we want to continue moving forward with help and suggestions from players, and this has worked so well we're likely to continue that even after early access!

A side effect of this iterative community focused development, is that whilst we have been putting more time into tweaking the game’s inner workings to create the ideal mix of ant colony realism and compelling gameplay, it has put us behind schedule in terms of producing a final product that we can label complete.

While we are confident about the state of the game’s mechanics, and the amount of playable content currently available, there are additional game modes, creatures and abilities that we are still working on. All of these will need balancing, and that process works best with player input.

It seems to make little sense holding back the game’s release for months of development whilst we work on additional levels and features. We would much rather continue our work in the same manner as we have done for the past year: with the help of our enthusiastic ant-loving community.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“As of early 2022, we estimate a further 6-18 months of development to reach our version 1.0. However this can change as game development is by its nature an unpredictable process.”

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

“The early access version includes six (soon eight) stand-alone missions with unique creatures, music and narration as well as a “formicarium” story mode which has three (soon four) devious missions to test your colony. This content is considered to be complete and unlikely to be changed significantly between now and final release (except for bug fixes, performance updates etc). Therefore the experience should be similar to the final product. Over the course of early access, we plan to introduce new content as blocks of complete missions, ready to play. We are also releasing periodic extra missions that are not part of the main story campaign.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“We have re-structured some parts of the game specifically for early access. The early access version includes stand-alone missions with unique creatures, music and narration as well as a “formicarium” story mode. This content is considered to be complete and unlikely to be added to between now and final release (except for potential bug fixes, performance updates etc). Therefore the experience should be similar to the final product. Over the course of early access, we plan to introduce new content as blocks of complete missions, ready to play.

Bugs are also an inevitable possibility (the software kind), however we are beta testing separately and will make every effort to resolve issues before pushing early access updates.”

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

“We may raise the price when we leave early access”

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

“We try to facilitate community feedback and engagement wherever possible. Since the early days of the project, we have received thousands of feedback messages through our forums, social media and Discord server. We read all of these and they have significantly shaped the evolution of the game - especially when we start to see the same point raised by multiple people. We have a dedicated community manager who is very involved with the community that has sprung up around Empires of the Undergrowth.”
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About This Game

Empires of the Undergrowth is a fast-paced ant colony strategy game. Underground you will excavate your nest, constructing tunnels and chambers to store resources and raise your brood, before venturing above ground. Here, your ants will claim territory, gather resources and overwhelm fearsome creatures. Nest layout, army size and composition along with knowing when to attack or retreat are key to securing victory for your colony of ants.

Features



  • Carve out and construct your underground nest to suit your strategy
  • Engage in fast-paced colony versus colony combat above ground
  • Play as different ant species and explore their unique traits and weaknesses
  • Encounter and overpower dangerous beetles, arachnids and other awesome arthropods

The Formicarium



The fully-voiced campaign in Empires of the Undergrowth has two elements to it, first is the formicarium where you start with just a queen and a few workers. As the game progresses, you will have to withstand the experiments of a mad scientist, growing stronger and genetically adapting your ants to survive his machinations. The Formicarium also acts as a hub in which you can launch scenario missions, which allow you to take control of a variety of ant colonies. To unlock the next tier of scenarios you must withstand the aforementioned experiments.

Documentary Scenarios



"Your queen has set up home beneath a rotting log. She is fat, and vulnerable. Her first brood will need to move quickly if the colony is to survive. Their priority now is to find food, and there is plenty around; but there are other hungry creatures in the undergrowth. The workers will need to be vigilant."

Scenarios are narrated from the perspective of a documentary film maker studying the ants, who offers intelligent insight into the goings-on of the colony and the undergrowth beyond.

The scenarios are presented in "tiers" with five planned for the full release (three are currently live). Each tier's missions are presented in a nature documentary style, and vies to be scientifically accurate whilst also being fun to play. Each tier allows you to play as a different species of ant, each with their own differences and play style. The settings for each level also vary, to reflect the environment in which you would natively find that species.

Black Ants



A recently-mated black ant queen has burrowed into the substrate underneath a log. After giving birth to her first brood, she must rely on them to find food, further excavate her nest, and battle the deadly beetles and spiders that lurk nearby.

Wood Ants



A wood ant queen takes over the nest of another ant species by dispatching its queen and taking her place. The close proximity to a beach gives the new colony access to the bounty of the sea, but there are many other hungry creatures and rival colonies on these intertidal flats.

Leafcutter Ants



Leafcutter ants eat only fungus that they grow from leaf cuttings. A fledgling colony must climb and harvest the nearby vegetation, whilst battling praying mantises, rove beetles and marauding lines of army ants. Huge leafcutter majors can be spawned to keep their enemies at bay.

Coming Soon: Fire Ants



Invasive fire ants are carving out an empire for themselves in the swamps. They can link their bodies to build floating pontoons over water, giving them access to unplundered resources. Huge amphibians and dragonflies are some of the many dangers they will face, but fire ants don't get their name idly - their sting more than makes up for their size.

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Freeplay


Freeplay mode offers a potentially endless, more open-ended experience than the campaign levels. Once you've mastered the campaign, take your upgraded colony to new challenges. Some freeplay creatures and colonies can be unlocked by completing extra levels.

Extra Levels


If you want to take a break from the main campaign and the open ended nature of freeplay, there are a range of extra levels to get stuck into, which offer unique objectives and - in some cases - allow you to take control of other species altogether.

System Requirements

Windows
macOS
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7 64-bit or higher
    • Processor: Intel Core i3-4340 / AMD FX-6300
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia GeForce GTX 660 2GB / AMD Radeon HD 7850 2GB
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.14.6
    • Processor: Intel Core i3-4340 / AMD FX-6300
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia GeForce GTX 660 2GB / AMD Radeon HD 7850 2GB
    • Storage: 2 GB available space

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