BŠal-Abaddon, the demon from the Bottomless Pit is having what one would call 'a very bad hair day'. So bad in fact that it's actually happening on a Tuesday....probably.
What's really impressive is that he doesn't even have any hair to have a bad day with, so things must be really excruciating. What's that? Oh the point, you want me to get to that do you? Fair enough, I shall do my best.
Impire is a dungeon lord simulator which has the player taking the role of BŠal-Abaddon, the lord of the Bottomless Pit who has been summoned by the gormless Oscar va Fairweather, a terribly inept sorcerer. He made a pigs ear of the spell that brought forth BŠal-Abaddon into the mortal realm as a 3' Imp rather than a 12' tall hell-spawn with big pointy horns on his head.
Horrified and somewhat embarrassed by these turn of events, BŠal-Abaddon breaks free of the pitiful bonds Mr Fairweather had put into place and sets about creating his very own home from hell in the form of a vast and imposing dungeon. The larger the dungeon, the more BŠal-Abaddon will grow into his former 12' self, and only the heroes of Arandia, the realm BŠal-Abaddon finds himself in can stop him.
If the name 'Arandia' is at all familiar to you, then you may be played onto the Majesty games that were also published by Paradox Interactive. Impire is set in the same realm as those much celebrated high-fantasy based god-sims. Impire is a dungeon creation game with a heavy dose of humour splattered liberally throughout it, as can probably gleaned from the back-ground story.
Impire is a multi-layed game that offers varying degrees of interaction to the play. From the distant point of view, the player can building additional sections to their dungeon in order to drawn more denizens to their cause. This drills down to allowing the player to direct the actions of their minions as they fight heroes when they dare to enter the player's dungeon.
To build the dungeon the player can summon minions who skitter about digging new sections of dungeon as well as harvest materials in order to summon new monsters. Creatures that have taken up residence can be ordered to guard areas or simply patrol the dungeon's corridors. They will engage with enemies and alert the player of intrusions into their lair.
The dark lord BŠal-Abaddon in his imp form can be directly controlled to launch attacks against enemies. He can also lay traps for them, such as exploding barrels that cause a significant amount of damage to unwary heroes. By making BŠal-Abaddon a creature the player can control adds incentive to expand the dungeon, as the larger it becomes, BŠal-Abaddon follows suit. The end game will see BŠal-Abaddon become the 12' behemoth form is normally in his own realm of the Bottomless Pit.
Up until this point you may be thinking that Impire is remarkably similar to a certain Dungeon Keeper games of old, and you'd be right. But now dear reader is where I expand on what makes Impire so very different from that much lauded Bullfrog game from 1997.
The major difference is that in Impire, players can explore outside their dungeon. For the very first time in a dungeon management game, the player is afforded a chance to see and interact with the realm their dungeon is located in. It is actually required of the player to forage beyond the confines of their catacombs in order to gather resources to expand their lair.
The next unique feature to Impire is the presence of item cards. These are special cards players pick up while playing the game that modify the game-play slightly. As the player collects these cards, they can be used in conjunction with one another to suit the play style of the player.
To finish off Impire will boast a series of robust multiplayer modes including co-op as well as adversarial.
From what we saw Impire is shaping up to be a very interesting and unique title and will do much to train budding evil geniuses when it appears in early 2013 for the PC.