I have recently purchased a new game on which I will now write a game review on ( Tropico 4). I have only played twice for about an hour each time, so writing a complete game review would not be possible, at least not in the way most people do reviews. You see, most times, I wil not write reviews the way Gameinformer's editors do, where it's the entire game in one article. Even though I have completed 80% of all the games I own (8 out of 10 games), every time I write a review for a game I will play through the entire campaign and spend some time with the multiplayer (If there is any) in more than a couple days (remember I only game on weekends) and write some blog posts while completed the playthrough. 

                So I started playing Tropico Friday, and I was instantly sucked into the game. My first impression was that this game was very deep but not too easy to manage, and until now, myprediction has been right. Also, the menus are very complicated and hard to navigate. Instead of regular menus, Tropico's in-game menus have a different format. Instead of moving from item to item, you move the left analog stick in the direction from the center to where the item is, which makes it hard to select items that are diagonal from the center. http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/videogames/detail-page/tropico.04.03.lg.jpg (This is what most menus look like.) And even after you finish all the tutorials, there are a couple concepts that are unclear or you don't know how to do, such as exporting or “switching “from leaning towards communism to capitalism and other things. You eventually figure out that you automatically export what your citizens don’t eat or process into more valuable items, but I just wish you would have more control over what and when to export. Even the mission selection menus are tricky are first, but after one mistake it is pretty obvious how they work.

                I’m not saying that Tropico isn’t extremely fun. While I have played many good strategy games in which you are the ruler of an entire nation and have full power (including Civilization IV and Civilization Revolution), this is the first game in which I feel truly in control. I love how Tropico includes every detail of managing small nation from starvation and health care to every single citizen’s needs and wants, making it the most realistic strategy game I have played yet (Note: I do not play Simcity, the only strategy games I choose must require at least a little bit of war diplomacy and violence, which by the way I have not reached yet in Tropico). The result is being able to do whatever you want under your own consequences, there are very few limits compared to other strategy games aside from the need of Ministers to pass edicts, which will sometimes limit your power to choose your government style early on in the game. Another strength of the game is the soundtrack. A rhythmical, vibrant selection of Central American songs sound in the background as you grow your empire, and the loading menu’s music is as good, with quotes from important historical figures displayed on the bottom of the screen.

                So far I have finished the four short tutorial missions and I am starting the twenty mission campaign. The most critical feature of the game awaits me, Sandbox mode, because whether a gamer will play this game for ten hours or a couple months and more depends on how entertaining this game mode is, although you can always replay the campaign to see how many different outcomes you can have. My initial impression is that Tropico 4 is going to be one of the best strategy games I will ever play, and I hope that does not change.



   So now I've been building my own little Caribbean island for a while, and the game is really starting to open up. Things I used to think of as a challenge such as faction tasks and industry tasks now serve as guidelines to keep me on track and help me build a stronger export income. Environmentalists are still a pain in the neck with their nonstop complaining, but at least most of them have left my island. My economy has tripled since I had to build a weapons factory to export 1000 weapons to “Sheik Sallim”, the leader of the Middle East. I used to import Iron for a very little price, now weapons are made out of Iron and sold at very high prices.

                It may sound like the game is simply getting easier, but that’s not the case at all. Productivity is hard to maintain with the need of so much food for the citizens, especially after issuing the “Food for the People” edict. Edicts are modifiers that cost a certain amount of money and are divided into six divisions: Defense, Economy & Tourism, Education, General, Foreign Affairs and Interior. Each can help out in different situations, but you’ll have to pay an immediate price and sometimes a monthly or yearly fee.

                The game is not only revealing its depth, but also the sights that can be seen looking at my little island from above are astounding. Tropico 4 has the most detailed graphics in any strategy game I’ve ever seen, which is impressive taking into consideration that most of the time you are looking down from thousands of feet high. The sharp, detailed graphics just add to the entire experience as Tropico 4 continues to impress me.