Maia - god sim of the future! - Kick Starter

Maia is a new god game by Simon Roth. Maia's developer Simon Roth describes his game  as being like  "Dungeon Keeper meets Dwarf Fortress on a primordial alien world" and he is looking for 100,042 to fund his game. So far his kick starter campaign has made £110,373 with just 62 hours to go until his kick starter campaign ends.

Simon Roth describes his game as been a space colony management simulator/God game which he has said is heavily inspired by the bull frog games of the 90s, for example theme hospital and dungeon keeper. Also the Maxis games from  that time period. along with more recent games like dwarf fortress.


Maia will have a Unique science fiction aesthetic inspired by 70s science fiction, and it will be set on the planet of Maia in the Tau Ceti system. The players objective will be to survive , thrive and build a colony in Maia's hostile environment.

In Maia you start out with a single room, an airlock to the outside world, 10 colonists and 5 robots called Imps. The player can build their colony below ground or above it, however building it above ground is putting the colonists in greater danger and increases the likely hood of colonists getting killed which I will explain more about later in this article. Building above ground does offer greater rewards to the player and depending on the Environment and its conditions, building above the ground will put the colony in a lot more danger, however it will mean greater rewards for the player which the developer Simon Roth hasn't elaborated on yet.

The game will have natural disasters which you will need to prepare for by having alot of resources stored for the likelihood of such an event. Because your Colony will be threatened by events such as intense seismic activity, meteor strikes and Solar flares, oh my.. The developer has said that there is a chance your whole colony could be wiped out by a disasters such as a meteor strike or  the intense seismic activity. when not surviving disasters, such as the ones I just mentioned you will have to keep your colony's buildings maintained and monitor the temperature inside of them. I assume so everyone will not freeze or cook to death. There will be a day and night cycle in the game,  that will affect the wild life, plant growth and solar output ect , there will also be cloud coverage which will  add a little more atmosphere to the game.

Other than these horrific and devastating natural disasters you will have to fight off the local flora and fauna, for example to keep the predators away you will have to build defence turrets, lock your colony's doors and set traps, you will also have to put lighting all around your colony, The lighting will also keep the local flora at bay which will be a very convenient way of dealing with that. One warning however , if your environment becomes anyway unbalanced you may have to deal with extra predators. For example if you cause the death somehow of the majority of their prey. That will mean your colonists will be a notch lower in the food chain and will become their new prey yikes.

You will have to research sources of power, water and food and explore the surface and perform science to produce the technology which will enable you to survive, your colonists will also be able to perform archeological digs.

The colonists will not have any gui which will tell the player which skills they are best at, so the player  will have to observe them and the activities they seem to enjoy the most to determine which jobs they are best suited for.. Also colonists will age, have children and will have needs for things like food and entertainment. one thing on peoples minds of course will be if the children can be killed by the Environment, natural disasters or the wild life and if so will that drive up the games age rating. The developer had this to say in a recent question and answer session on reddit.

"This is a major issue, not because of game ratings or censorship, but more I am worried that it might break the tone of the humour somewhat. I want it to happen, but I might infer it... I'll find a way to make it fit."

Colonists will have distinct personalities and moods and lighting will affect their moods, so the player will have to be conscious of that as they are building  their colony. It will be interesting to see if  other aspects of the colonists Environment like the wild life for example and the weather if the game will have weather, which I have not seen mentioned anywhere, will have an affect on the colonists moods. The game will also have robots, Imps been the only robots mentioned by the developer so far, they will specialize in digging, so the player can build their colony under the ground instead of above it. There will be other robots and the player will be able to design those if the game reaches the £150000 stretch goal which will mean the game gets a robot editor. if it doesn't reach that stretch goal  the games developers will design them and add them to the game themselves.

"£150000 A robot editor! Design your own robots and turrets!

Combine chassis, weapons, tools, sensors, legs, wheels, tracks and AI personality cores for you to build your own workers, soldiers, turrets or perhaps just a door with an irritatingly cheerful and sunny disposition."

The game at its core will be a fully fledged sand box game, There will also be a campaign mode since the game has hit its 115,000 stretch goal. which will be nice for players who want to be eased into how the game plays, through  playing the  campaign and for those who might enjoy the games story.
 If they hit the £120000 stretch goal there will also be  A campaign editor! which would be very cool, especially for modders.

The developer hopes to add a lot of features and depth into the game, and they are saying it will be one big interconnected simulation which sounds fantastic! The developer is hoping to add a tech tree to the game which will be nonlinear and in some places somewhat random. The outcomes of research will not be predictable, so it will keep the player on their toes and it will lend towards forcing the player to come up with  a new strategy each time they play the game. So if you are a gamer who enjoys a challenging game , this may very well be the game for you! The developer has said that they are  planning on adding  a lot of things which will occur without warning , for example the natural disasters I mentioned.

                                   A video of the games first person mode.

Maia has a very cool looking first person mode which has pixelated graphics with a blue and red colour tones, this is because you can only see from the cameras of robots and turrets in first person mode and it is  to get across the fact that they see in 3D. which the video above demonstrates. The games graphics and tone are inspired by 1970s science fiction movies like 2001 , silent running, Ridley Scots Alien. The game will be dark humored,  that dark honor is inspired by literature from authors  such as Arther C Clack, Philip K Dick, Isaac Asimov and  Douglas Adams. Expect allot of Dark British humour.

The developer has said that the game will run on mid range computers, but has said nothing about what the exact minimum requirements will be.

If this games developer delivers on all of these promises which they have made, this will be truly spectacular game without a doubt!

So If this game appeals to you back it soon as we are covering this game as the last few hours of its Kick Starter campaign come to an end.  If you are interested in this game and wish to Back the Kick starter campaign and have not already. the kick starter campaign ends on November 28 , 2012 so you will need to back it soon!

This article is by John P Martin.

You can follow him on twitter here.

Stay tuned for new articles, interviews, previews, reviews and prizes!

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