Workers & Resources: Soviet Republic Review
Workers and Resources: the Soviet Republic is a real-time city-building game with a big emphasis on resource management and creating a self-sufficient society that doesn’t depend on outside imports or workforce to survive and thrive. It’s still in early access, which means it’s not fully finished, and the goal of this review is to help you decide if it’s worth buying in its current state. It’s a challenging game with a fairly steep learning curve compared to other city-building games. Still, despite the added difficulty that made me question my intelligence on more than one occasion, it’s addictive and enjoyable to play! It feels like a mix between Cities Skylines and Transport Fever 2 while adding many new ideas to make it feel unique.
The Workers and Resources: Soviet Republic game takes place during the height of the Soviet era from 1960 to 1990, and your main objective is to create a sustainable republic that mines its coal, processes its oil and builds its cars, planes, and trains. The key is to optimize your industry setups to operate at peak efficiency. There are tons of different resources, products, and vehicles to play around with, and you’re able to build complex conveyor belt setups to connect different factories and storage yards. On top of that, you can buy loads of different trains, trucks, diggers, trams, and even cablecars to help your citizens and tourists get to where they’re going, be it a mountain lodge for tourists or a dirty old coal mine for the locals.
You also need to build and maintain multiple towns and cities on a single map and set up transportation routes to ferry the workers to the factories and mines.
Enough workers available
You’ve got to make sure there are always enough workers available to cover shift changes; otherwise. It can lead to a total shut down of production, which can have dramatic consequences, so building an effective transport network is extremely important. The maps are randomly generated, and you can choose to start with an existing population or a completely blank canvas depending on your playstyle. Making money in any meaningful amount is exceptionally difficult and requires a long and intricate production chain to pull off. There are 2 currencies in the game, dollars, and rubles, and you can fund building projects and buy resources using either currency.
Edges of the MAP
The edges of the map represent your borders with neighboring states where one side is misaligned with NATO and the other with the Soviet Union. You can make more of each currency by shipping goods like steel and oil to a customs office located along each side’s border. It’s up to you which side you sell to. There are different vehicles available for each currency; as I mentioned earlier, your main goal is ultimately to become self-sufficient as soon as possible.
By using a construction office, you’re able to buy vehicles like bulldozers and road rollers that, together with locally sourced labor, can use materials you’ve mined and processed in other industrial areas to build things like roads, residential buildings, and new factories. Once your town’s populated, you need to ensure they have a reliable source of electricity, heat, and basic services, which you can either import or manufacture yourself.
Temperatures plummet during the winter, and electricity consumption increases during the night. Unlike other city builders, there’s no tax income, so any money you spend has to be replenished by exporting a product. The AI automatically takes care of most tasks once you’ve bought or manufactured the vehicles and services they need. They send their kids to daycare themselves. They find the nearest transport link or workplace on their own. Construction offices and factories take care of construction and manufacturing as long as they have staff and materials to work with.
On the surface, building a self-sufficient republic for free by doing all the work yourself and then exporting everything you make to make loads of money sounds easy. But getting all the pieces to fit together to maximize production and keep your citizens happy, so they do escape, requires a lot of skill and planning, and that’s where the game excels.
Graphically it’s honestly pretty gross but in an intentionally bleak, Soviet sort of way. And the music is insanely catchy. The performance is good, and I didn’t have any fps issues on my 1080ti though it did crash whenever I alt-tabbed from full-screen mode but running it in windowed fullscreen worked like a charm.
If you’ve ever wanted a more challenging city builder with an emphasis on worker and resource management and you’re not put off by the hopeless soviet-style graphics, then this is worth a look. I’ve put it over 45 hours of laytime in the last few days and, although. I ultimately failed to create a sustainable republic that didn’t end in bankruptcy. However, the addictive and slow-paced gameplay always kept me coming back for more, and we recommend checking it out.