It's perhaps with a degree of irony that the gods of the sequel, Electronic Arts, has announced the sequel to god game Black & White, which once again forces you to make moral choices: to buy or to ignore, buy or ignore, buy or ignore…
Once again the game is coming to the PC, although ominously the "release date has not been set", and is of course being developed by 'the mind of industry icon, Peter Molyneux' and his merry men at Lion of Head. He is, in fact, strapped to a giant brain machine in Guildford as we speak, coding with his eyes. Fact.
"Our relationship with EA spans many years and products including the huge commercial and critical success of Black & White," said Molyneux, via a HAL-esque voice encoding machine. "The gigantic sack of cash that awaits me when I deliver this game had nothing to do with wanting to do a sequel," he didn't go on to say.
Ok, vaguely seriously for a second (it is Friday afternoon, and we did have two parties to attend last night), the world of Eden is at war. Do you choose to spark up a fag and get a good view of the bloodshed, or wade in with evil armies armed with flying goats with sharpened horns? Hmm. Decisions decisions.
[Serious mode on] You can build huge fortresses around your settlements, and gather a large army to defend yourself against opposing warriors and creatures, in a game that sounds more like a wargame take on the original formula.
As previously, the game's all about moral choices, and every action/inaction has a bearing on the game world, with not only your creatures morphing to reflect your good/evil, but the surrounding flora and fauna too. The usual claims of enhanced creature AI are present and correct, along with promises of new weapons, technology and smarter creatures that can "learn strategies and master new abilities and skills". Creatures will also have the ability to command armies, and be the "ultimate" unit.
The visual side has had the requisite makeover too, with improved miracle effects including rivers of fire and "devastating" earthquakes which "rip the terrain apart". Black & White 2 also features an advanced weather system, with different climates such as the deserts of Egypt and the wet, snow-capped Norse mountains, "each impacting the game in its own way", the blurb states enigmatically.
Also players can meet other tribes from the Japanese to the Aztecs and hopefully pinch all their resources mercilessly. "The ability to create magnificent cities with new buildings and landmarks, and the ability to construct walls to defend your people and the option to command huge armies means that Black & White 2 will be an epic experience in every sense of the word." So there you have it. Populous meets Sim City over lunch?