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The Settlers (German: Die Siedler) is a city-building video game with real-time strategy elements, developed and published by Blue Byte Software. Released in Germany for Amiga in June 1993, and in the United Kingdom in November, it is the first game in The Settlers series. In 1994, Blue Byte and Massive Development ported the game to MS-DOS. Blue Byte published the DOS version in Europe under its original title in May, but in North America, it was published in December by SSI as Serf City: Life is Feudal. In 2018, the game was re-released for Microsoft Windows as The Settlers: History Edition.
The game is set in a medieval milieu, and controlled via a point and click interface, with the primary goal on each map being to build a settlement with a functioning economy, producing sufficient military units so as to conquer rival territories, ultimately gaining control of the entire map. To achieve this end, the player must engage in economic micromanagement, construct buildings, and generate resources. The game can be played in one of two modes; a series of fifty sequential missions against computer controlled opponents of increasing difficulty, or a free-game style mode, in which the player competes in individual games involving either computer-controlled opponents, human opponents, or a combination of both.
Originally envisioned as a standard god game, similar to Populous, the concept of The Settlers was altered by the game's designer and programmer, Volker Wertich, after development had already begun. Wanting to create something unlike other titles available at the time, Wertich decided to focus on creating a game which could simulate a complex economic system, and which would feature gameplay built around a simulation of real-world supply and demand. However, due to the complexities of writing a codebase which understood and could realistically duplicate such a system, as well as ensuring the computer could handle military and economic matters simultaneously, the game required over two years of development. Wertich worked on the programming for a year, writing 70,000 lines of raw code, before any work began on the graphics.
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The Settlers System Requirements
- Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP
- Processor: any
- RAM: 32 MB
- Video Card: SVGA 640x480
- Hard disk space: 4.3 MB