Speaking of Frog City

Well, we were, sort of. Anyway, has anyone played the Tropico 2: Pirates Cove demo yet? While I enjoyed Tropico quite a bit (for awhile, anyway), I just can’t seem to muster much enthusiasm for this one. Is it worth the download?


I had no idea Frog City was affiliated with Tropico 2. I loved the first one, so I’ll be checking it out. I also really like Frog City, owning all of their games (yes, even Trade Empires, which is very enjoyable).

I repeat: What happened to Frog City’s Pantheon? I guess it was simply cancelled, but it just is not nice to yank something away like that. :cry:

I was not aware there was a demo yet for T2: Pirate’s Day, but I am headed that way once I get home.

Yeah, I remember that game… I mean, the announcements for that game… a year or two ago… whatever happened to it?

Did they even find a publisher for it? As I recall, the game was pretty far along in development but no publisher was on board. Mind you, that’s eighteen months ago, and Frog City should have no trouble finding publishers given their track record.


It was canceled, unfortunately. I don’t remember the details now, but I remember being disappointed upon hearing the news.

A quick Google search and I was able to come up with the details on Pantheon’s cancellation:


This is one of those titles I would be railing against but I’m biting my lip. I have a lot of faith in both Frog City and Poptop. I understand Poptop isn’t developing it, but I’m sure they’re involved in some way. Anyway, I love pirates and all that scurvy dog stuff, but it just sounds like a game where someone thought “What’s the easiest way we can push something else out the door with at minimum cost?”

Anyway, I’ll check out the demo when I can find it on a site other than File planet.

It is probably worth $40 a month for broadband access of some type so that you never again have to ask this question.

I completely understand why you say that, and I felt pretty much the same way, but having played the demo now (I broke down), I’m pretty happy with it. You’re right that PopTop and Frog City wanted to re-use the same game engine and the same Caribbean location, and that’s how the subject of pirates got introduced. It was either that or do a) a complete knock-off of the original, or b) a negro slave-trade simulator, which is just not possible for obvious reasons. I remember that being discussed back when Frog City first got the gig.

The one thing in the demo that really stood out for me was the lack of “lightheartedness” that Bill Spieth and others have been claiming for T2 for all these months. That doesn’t mean it isn’t there in the full game, and what is in the demo isn’t dark and brooding by any means, but it sure wasn’t the laugh-a-second yuk-fest I was expecting. For instance, instead of pirates whipping their captives, supposedly they were going to snap them with wet towels instead. I never saw that. What I did see were very real-looking corpses hanging from trees and piles of bones and things like that. I’m not objecting to that or anything. I was just kind of surprised. (And how anyone can look at that parrot in the opening screen and not want to see it bouncing and swaying to the music is beyond me. How could a designer miss that? Maybe that’s not the finalized screen or something…)

As for the game itself, one dynamic that really changes the gameplay is the way you have to get your civilians from off-island now. There’s no baby-making in Tropico 2. Everything has to be done by hook or by crook. (But there do seem to be an awful lot of local shipwrecks, from which you acquire free civilian captives. There must have been twenty wrecks in the four-year span the demo covers.) If your economy is floundering and you have the muscle, just go raid a few foreign ships and your bank account will bounce back. That part really appealed to me. Also, there seems to be a fairly deep diplomatic simulator in place, although none of it is included in the demo. And just like T1, there’s tons of info and overlays to help you manage your economy. In fact, I got a big kick out of the incongruity of old, illiterate Blackbeard the pirate studying his detailed Profit and Loss statements. :)

Anyway, to cut to the quick, T2 is a much cooler game than I thought it would be. On the surface it doesn’t look like anything special, but I ended up having an awful lot of fun playing it. I’ll definitely be buying the full game when it’s released.

Anyway, I’ll check out the demo when I can find it on a site other than File planet.

Fileshack has it, too. That’s where I ended up downloading it from.


I take back what I just said about Frog City wanting to re-use Tropico’s engine. I could have sworn I read that way back when, but apparently I’m wrong:


That’ll teach me to rely on memory. I did think the graphics looked slightly different in T2, but I just chalked that up to the resolution the demo is set at.

Ah, thanks. I had already forgotten about that SSI/Mattel business. Too bad the game was one of the victims.

I was pretty sad to see Pantheon cancelled as it looked pretty cool. Imperialism 2 was a great game. However, I thought Trade Empires was a disappointment. So from my point of view, Frog City’s history is mixed. Did you all like Trade Empires?

I’m pretty much in agreement with you, I think. I felt like Trade Empires was a rushed game that Frog City probably agreed to do just to keep the doors open. The game had a good premise, and decent gameplay in theory, but it just had the feel of a product that was only half there. I was expecting something along the lines of a land-based Patrician, but needless to say that’s not what it ended up being.

That said, it was reasonably interesting for awhile. All this talk about Frog City has me wanting to fire it up and give it another go. :?

I find it strange that there’s another game (from the makers of Patrician II), that is coming soon and seems a lot like Pirate’s Cove:

Port Royale

Especially if the light-hearted tone is being reduced/abandoned for T2:PC, because Port Royale appears to have that dry seriousness of the Patrician games. Port Royale also seems to center more on pirate combat/trading whereas T2:PC would presumably have that more Sim-like population control aspect of the first Tropico.

Odd that there will suddenly be two choices in the Pirate empire genre, though :)

Thanks for the link. I didn’t know about that one.

Odd that there will suddenly be two choices in the Pirate empire genre, though :)

It seems to go that way more often than not, actually. Everybody spots the same hole in the market at the same time and rushes to fill it.