There are plenty of genres that are synonymous with PC gaming, from immersive sims to stat-heavy RPGs, but there’s probably no other genre that makes its home on our boxes quite as well as the 4X. From Civilization right up to modern installments like Millennia, there have been plenty of developers tinkering in this space over the years. Now, Ara: History Untold is looking to make its mark and there’s every chance it might do so.

Immersion isn’t something that’s often bandied around when it comes to 4X games. You’re usually distant from the action, poring through menus or sliding troops between hexes. In Ara: History Untold, all that will change with you being immersed in everything going on in your empire. Similar to games like Cities Skylines, you can zoom right down onto your nation and see people going about their business, animals running free, and the effects of the decisions you’ve made. This approach looks to pay off as it’s fair to say that Ara: History Untold is one of the best looking games of this type out there.

There’s plenty else to differentiate it from the competition too. One key aspect is the ability to retool your nation’s economy to produce tons of a particular resource, from equipment to luxuries. In order to take advantage you’ll have to make sure your nation’s efficiency is optimized, bringing both micro and macro management together. It allows you to make sweeping decisions that affect not only your entire country, but also how you’ll interact with your opponents.

The biggest and potentially most impactful idea in Ara: History Untold is how turns unfold. Instead of every nation going one by one, turns occur simultaneously. This means you’ll have to think further ahead and not rely on simply reacting, as enemy units won’t sit still waiting for you to come hit them. Even in the game’s online multiplayer, simultaneous moves are the name of the game, making playing against friends a more tight, tense affair than in many competitors.

There’s plenty more to admire in developer Oxide Games’ willingness to throw out the rulebook with Ara: History Untold. With a recent deep dive into the game over on Xbox Wire, more details bounced loose about how the game will work, along with the reveal of its upcoming launch date.

Ara: History Untold will launch on Tuesday September 24. While you wait, you can head over to the game’s Steam page to check it out for yourself and add it to your wishlist.

You can also take a look at our picks for the best strategy games you can play, or dive into our best turn-based strategy games guide.

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