Developer EarthWork Games
I believe I first saw Forts at PAX Australia in 2015 and I loved the madness of building tipsy towers (and smashing other people’s tipsy towers) so much that I made it my feature game that year. This year I reviewed a full release and it was even on the Indie Showcase! What more could I say about the game? Designer/Programmer Tim Auld tells us, “We are getting around 2000 multiplayer games per day four months after launch. We’ve had a surprisingly strong showing from France, but Germany and the US dominate.” Certainly, some of my favourite Forts moments were playing co-op with a friend.
So, given Forts is something you can buy now, let’s look at how people can get involved. Auld says, “Players sign up to the North American or European Challenge bracket. Coordination is via Discord. For each match, a referee hosts the game, as an observer, to mediate map selection, enforce rules, keep score and save the replay. The first round is instant knockout, semis are best of three, and the final is best of five. The champion and runners up receive Forts keys and t-shirts.” Have I participated? Wow, I am way too scared. If you are unfamiliar with it, Forts is a game with many pieces and possible build orders.
And, it’s getting more stuff! Auld tells us, “The community has been keen for new weapons. Our favourite, so far, is the flak cannon, which has an adjustable fuse. The detonation can spray shrapnel behind enemy barricades, good for flushing out enemy mortar positions.” There’s also a map editor and methods for modding. The developers even included a map and modded AI by player and community organiser, Quxzcover. One of the best things about attending PAX over the last five years has been meeting and maintaining contact with developers as their games evolve. Forts has been wonderful to watch grow.