Monaco dev making a ‘battle of wits’ real-time strategy game

Monaco developer Pocketwatch Games has two goals for its next title: make a fun, accessible real-time strategy game and make it play well on a modern controller.

"Maybe it’s just nostalgia speaking, but I want to play an RTS game that feels like a battle of wits, not a battle of clicks," Pocketwatch lead developer Andy Schatz wrote in a blog post. "I want to compete at a high level, but I also want to be able to introduce the RTS genre to my friends at a party. I want an RTS where the strategy is creative and complex and the micro is accessible and fun.

"[ARMADA] is the simplicity of Monaco injected into a classic RTS."

Schatz also wants to make sure Armada (tentatively titled) plays well on today's controllers: "With apologies to those devs who have tried, no one has ever made an RTS that played well on a dual analog gamepad. We’re gonna be the first to do it right."

Players control a champion who can build structures, command forces, and fight for herself (!). Troops are autonomous A.I. that can perform different tasks, such as harvesting resources or attacking enemies.

Schatz says Armada will revolve around cooperation and co-op. It's about a month into development. The developer was unable to say how long the project would take to complete.

"I honestly don’t know if [ARMADA] will be another three-year project. I don’t even know if it will be longer than a 6-month project. Sound kind of familiar? That’s how Monaco started out … as a six-week XBLIG game.

"But I do know that there is a game that I want to play that doesn’t exist," Schatz wrote. "Monaco’s success has given us the leeway to make whatever game we want to make next."

Pocketwatch released Monaco: What's Yours Is Mine, a stealth-heist multiplayer game, for PC in April 2013. It came to Mac and Linux and also Xbox 360 in May that year.