Frostpunk has been much more successful that its developer 11 Bit Studios ever expected, selling more than 1.4 million copies. It's the kind of success that's letting the developers take a moment to work out what they want to do next and it turns out a straight sequel isn't the way they're looking to go.
Released last year, Frostpunk puts you in the role of a mayor of a town in a world turning cold. A harsh winter is wrapping the world in ice and anyone left out of the city limits will die. Drawn to the heat of the generator in your town, refugees arrive daily and it's up to you to build the housing and factories to keep them all alive and producing resources to keep your town growing. It's an excellent game that forces you to make moral choices that may mean abandoning people to die so that the greater number may live.
Since it released, 11 Bit Studios has been expanding Frostpunk with new scenarios and DLC. "We've had that approach since day one," marketing director Patryk Grzeszczuk told GamesIndustry. "We were discussing Frostpunk as a universe. We wanted to create a world, and then fill that world with stories, with places, and then build connections between them."
Something of that thinking has been on show in the DLC. The expansions for Frostpunk have been more narrative focused than, say the DLC for Cities: Skylines, which added more systems for players to experiment with. The Fall of Winterhome gave a new strand of story to the Frostpunk universe, one in which the city comes pre-built and you have to work to bring the people on side after they threw out their previous leader.
"[The DLC] is expanding on the universe, it is adding new story, and explaining some things that might be hinted at in the past," Grzeszczuk said.
With that in mind, the studio isn't talking about doing a straight sequel that once again places you in control of a city struggling against the endless winter. Instead, the plan may be to jump to a different genre entirely. "This is what really drives us," Grzeszczuk reveals. "The world of Frostpunk is growing, and we're thinking that, in the future we should think about, maybe not a sequel, but a spin-off - an RPG set in the same universe."
An RPG could be a fascinating perspective to view this world of Victorian ice and snow. The very first trailer for Frostpunk focused on the people trying desperately to reach the warmth of the city, before they were killed by the cold of the winter. An RPG would put you back on that personal level, dealing with the individual moral choices that come with survival.Do you think you'd be able to survive an extreme winter? Let us know on Facebook and Twitter.
Featured Image Credit: 11 Bit Studios