There are some big What If questions throughout history that people love to hypothesize about. What if Archduke Franz Ferdinand hadn't gone off on off his motorcade route in Sarajevo? What if Stanislav Petrov had made the call? But the most pressing question you now need to see play out is ' What if World War II had been fought with giant mechs instead of tanks?' Iron Harvest, an upcoming RTS from King Art Games, sets out to explore that hypothetical scenario.
The setting for the strategic mech action, referred to as 1920+, was created by Polish artist Jakub Różalski who also worked on the board game Scythe, which featured a similar aesthetic and shares the setting. In 1920+, humanity managed to perfect walking machines, large, iron contraptions capable of striding across the land. These vehicles came to permeate everyday life for convenience and the battlefield soon after. World War I still happened and a new threat works in secret across the European continent to throw it into chaos once more.
Players will encounter three main factions throughout Iron Harvest. To the west lies the Saxony Empire, a wealthy, influential country whose elites resent the terms of surrender that followed World War I. They posses highly sophisticated factories that could manufacture some of the finest war machines in the world. Rusviet sits in eastern Europe. Though huge in landmass and capable of unparalleled military production, its population has been devastated by the recent war. The discontent spreads as the country's Tsar begins to lose power. A man named Grigori Rasputin seems to offer stability and hope, though it may come at the cost of a revolution. Between Saxony and Rusviet lies the Polania Republic. Largely an agricultural heartland, Polania struggles to maintain its borders with encroachments by its two neighbors. To that end, it has begin to modernize its forces in case either Rusviet or Saxony decide to overstep their bounds.
Players will take control of heroes, mechs, and soldiers and make use of everything they can to accomplish mission objectives. Squads will have to use cover carefully to survive the fighting, not an easy task when environments are destructible. King Art Games says that Iron Harvest uses "open sandbox levels," so players have freedom with how they want to approach and accomplish missions across a storyline that seems like it will have some branching paths. The team intends for it to feel like a more narratively driven RTS with some influence from XCOM.
King Art Games has yet to release a trailer or additional details. For now, we know that Iron Harvest has a planned release for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. In the meantime, I'd encourage everyone to check out the artwork for the game by Jakub Różalski - it is absolutely gorgeous and gives a pretty clear idea for what King Art intends for the look and feel of Iron Harvest.