What is there not like about being a dictator? You get to control everything, from what your country exports, imports even how your people feel. If they don’t like you just have them killed using your secret police! If that makes them mad and they want to replace you, just rig the elections…or don’t have one at all! Those are just a few things you can do in Tropico 4. Kalypso really found the sweet spot between a city building sim and a strategy game. The learning curve is slightly less than Sim City and the game is as in depth, if not more than Civilization. I can guarantee if you like these two game you will love Tropico 4.
The first thing you should do is the tutorial. While it is informative, for me, it wasn’t necessary. I jumped right into the awesome sandbox mode. This mode like the name suggests lets you build a country and an “El Presidente” from scratch and do what you please with no real structure. I have spent 12 hours messing around in this mode and still haven’t found everything this game has to offer. My only gripe is that the islands that I’ve played on thus far are too small. You have to manage a working system of imports and exports all the while trying not to go into debt. While this may seem par for the course you also have to make sure the factions in your country like you. This adds an additional challenge because just making one change can cause a strike or a hold out of some kind bringing your economy to a screeching halt.
Graphically this game is as detailed as I’ve ever seen a game like this. You can zoom right down to street level and see the cracks in the sidewalk. I actually saw a “for sale” ad on one of my tenements, I don’t remember what for, but you could make it out clearly. I would say for a predominately top down game it’s nice to see they took the time to put in little details even though you might never see them unless you look. The music is catchy as well, kudos to whoever did the score for this game. The upbeat Latin music really brings the whole Caribbean island theme to life.
Overall Tropico 4 is a solid game that will provide you hours of fun with great replay value. There’s a few other game modes such as challenge and sort of campaign mode but I was drawn in by the sandbox mode and stuck on it since I turned the game on. This is definitely one you want to get and it’s always on sale so it’s 100% worth it!