Everyone has an evil side. Some let that side out for all to see, but most like to keep it locked away. Videogames are a pretty safe area for your evil side to play. Games like Knights of the Old Republic and Fable let you chose your own moral path, but the little voice in your head is always telling you that you should be doing the right thing. Why can't your sole aim be, being evil? Why can't you be so evil that you have your own evil lair? An evil lair filled with evil minions. An evil lair filled with evil minions, evil super henchmen and a massive evil weapon. Have all that and more in Evil Genius from Elixir Studios. At the recent EGN event in London we sat down with the developers to look at the completed game.
The game plays similarly to other micro-management games such as Dungeon keeper and the "Theme" series. You chose from three evil geniuses and then set about building your underground base, secretly hidden on a tropical island. Building this base is very simple. Select a room type from a menu, click where you want to place it and drag out to set the size. Once you give confirmation to start building, your minions will exchange a suitcase of cash for some TNT and blow up the rock where you new room will be.
'you get a lot of interest from other corporations, all sending their own spies and mercenaries to infiltrate your base'
Each room has a specific set of objects that can be placed in them. A training room can have punch bags, firing ranges, research desks and other things to help minions better themselves. The armoury doubles as an Interrogation room, so while holding weapons also contains holding cells and a long list of possible interrogation (read as torture) devices. Basic interrogation chairs aren't much fun, but the more evil devices will have people talking in no time. Being dunked in a vat of acid isn't something you want repeating. The barracks require beds and lockers, the control room needs computer consoles and memory banks, and your evil genius's office can be beautifully decorated with customary large evil boardroom desk and desk.
Being an Evil Genius, you get a lot of interest from other corporations, all sending their own spies and mercenaries to infiltrate your base. Your base can be set to three levels of alert, the highest of which tells your minions to shoot enemy spies on site. Individual enemies can be selected and marked for death, or if you require their help (via interrogation), capture. Once in a while you will encounter a super spy. They have special skills and are far less vulnerable to your minion's attacks. Luckily you have some special henchmen yourself. One of these is Eli Barracuda. He is a white suit wearing, afro sporting evil guy. His special abilities are the Super Headshot and the Ghetto Posse. The Super headshot is pretty self explanatory and allows Eli to cause some serious damage with just one shot. The Ghetto Posse is perhaps the better ability. Eli gets his ghetto blaster out and pumps out some hypnotic tunes. Any enemies in the base start to involuntarily dance and become easy pickings for your minions. Other Henchmen have equally bizarre special abilities that they can use to help protect your base.
Your minions can train to have abilities of those people you have captured and interrogated. Capture a security guard and soon you will be making guard minions. A maid's skills let you create valet minions. Once you have these skills available you can mange how many minions of each type you want, but getting and training minion's costs money.