Publisher Paradox Interactive today announced a new game from Harebrained Schemes, the acclaimed developer behind the contemporary video game adaptations of Battletech and Shadowrun. It’s called The Lamplighters League (and the Tower at the End of the World), and it continues the studio’s love of creating tactical, turn-based role-playing games – but with a few extra twists. It’s slated to release for PC and Xbox Series X/S in 2023.
Unlike Battletech and Shadowrun, The Lamplighters League is a wholly original property for Harebrained, taking inspiration from 1930s pulp adventures that feature a ragtag group of heroes maneuvering around a Nazi-like cult, as well as supernatural forces.
The official press release announcing The Lamplighters League describes gameplay that combines three seemingly distinct gameplay focuses: turn-based tactical combat (of course), real-time infiltration, and team management.
Judging by the first-look gameplay trailer, it appears that each mission will begin by controlling your squad of three characters and exploring the world in real-time. As you approach a potential conflict, you have the ability to sneak around, scout enemy locations, and silently dispatch them if possible, before engaging in an all-out firefight. It’s very reminiscent of games like Mutant Year Zero, which mixed the two ideas in a very similar way.
A number of distinct characters were also shown in this first look, with each one sporting a unique style of combat, and bringing their own individual abilities to the table. With only three slots available on your squad for each mission, there’s likely a lot of potential for interesting combinations of characters. As is common with these sorts of tactical RPGs, characters can be injured during missions and put out of commission, and managing your resources and the overall team is likely an important consideration.
Judging by the trailer, a lot of focus will be placed on the narrative and relationships between each character outside of missions, which is a very interesting prospect, given the studio’s achievements in this area with the Shadowrun trilogy.
In a statement, Game Director Christopher Rogers remarked on the benefits of finally being able to work on a completely fresh property. ‘Because The Lamplighters League is set in a new world, it allows us the creative freedom to simultaneously create narrative that supports gameplay, and gameplay that supports narrative,’ he said.
The Lamplighters League looks like a very intriguing game, and given the very strong track record of Harebrained Schemes over the past decade, there’s every reason to keep a close eye on it. The game is currently planned for a 2023 release on PC and Xbox Series X/S, as well as the Xbox Game Pass subscription service.
In other news from Paradox Interactive, the publisher also announced Cities Skylines 2, a sequel to their popular and critically acclaimed city building and management game, as well as Life By You, a new life simulator to rival The Sims, headed up by former Sims director, Rod Humble.