I've been throwing out a lot of algorithms, data tables, and hair-brained ideas that end in a question mark. So I'm taking this blog to spell out what The Epic of Gilgamesh will be like to play.

Your character is a Demigod, born in an obscure (and completely made up) lesser city in ancient Mesopotamia. Your father was the local patron god. Your mother... not so much. When you reach the age of majority your father makes an appearance, declares you ruler of the village, wishes you the best, and then poof zaps away in a puff of smoke.

You start the game in control of a small city. Everything they have is yours to command. It's just not all that much. Some fields. Some traditions. A temple. A market. No army to speak of, nor fortifications to defend it. Just the crops you can grow and the silver you can make from selling it.

Because you are the Child of the local God, you have the Village's undying loyalty. This little city will always be home. Unless you manage to piss off someone enough that they come around and burn the place to the ground, and put all of its people to the sword. Because, being the Bronze age, stuff like that happens.

The first part of the game will be trying to expand the trade in your city. Or... maybe, figuring out how to invade nearby cities. As silver starts flowing in, the next part of the game will be defending your city from invaders. As other states (and their patron Gods) view you as competition, you also may find yourself locked in a war of the Gods, or holding back the Imperial ambitions of a rival.

All the while you have one eye on the goal of living forever. You will also be getting crazy requests from the Gods that have to be obeyed or... well... bad things will happen to you and/or your citizens.

You will be given an interface to control life in the city:

Throughout the game you will be interacting with AIs that are playing the same role in the game as you. They are running their own cities, with their own goals. Some can be bargained with. Some can be cowed. Others are just plain assholes. Cooperate with those you can cooperate with. Compete against those who want a competition. And wipe out out those that can't be reasoned with.

The computer will be performing complex models in the background of crop yields, warehouse spoilage, construction, epidemics, transportation, population growth, population contentment, spiritual influence, and more. You won't be interfacing with those models much. You will have advisors who will carry out your orders, and make helpful recommendations of what those orders should be.

When you go adventuring, it will be with a party. Before you leave, you pick the composition of that party. How many warriors. How many wise men. How many wagons of supplies. What battle tactics to utilize. Combat itself uses a custom built D&D style engine. You will be able to input moves for your characters, with orders to your subordinates in a turn by turn fashion. Or you can just set the automation loose, and get back an after action report. Your party members will be able to fight with or without your orders to do so, their success determined by skill, equipment, health, and initiative.

Here is a quick rundown on the types of advisors that you are going to need to run a small kingdom:


The Steward runs the show when you are not around. And when you are around, he or she runs the parts of show you don't want to be bothered with. If something comes up that really does require your attention, the Steward will dispatch a message getting your input.

Master At Arms

The Master at Arms who can be given orders on how you want potential party members trained. He or She will also go out and recruit party members who need to have special roles or abilities that an upcoming adventure will need. The Master at Arms can also be given instructions for how to level up your player's character for combat abilities.

Master of the Temple

The Master of the Temple is the intercession between the crown and the local temples. He or She brings matters of concern from the clergy and/or the Gods your royal majesty's attention. This person also coordinates with the temples the storage of grain in case of famine or siege. And this person warns you of trouble with the Gods that may, or may not, result in them blasting your city of out existence with a meteor, giant monster, or plague of some sort.

Master of Trade

The Master of Trade is in communication with the various trading guilds that do business through the city's port. He also assembles parties to perform the municipal trade routes for the city. He or she also manages the warehouses that store goods for commercial distribution. the City's territory.

Lord Mayor

The Lord Mayor is the intercession between the citizens of the city and the crown. He or She brings matters of concern from the citizenry to your royal majesty's attention. He or she also conducts checks on the Crown's standing with the people, and is the official spokesperson for the crown to the people.

Master of Agriculture

The Master of Agriculture manages the cultivation of food crops and livestock within the city and in the surrounding country. He or she make the choice about what and how much to plant, and manages the labor force to sow and harvest.

Master of Construction

The Master of Construction is responsible for the construction and maintenance of canals, roads, irrigation systems, municipal buildings, and fortifications within the city.

Master of Construction

The Master of Construction is responsible for the construction and maintenance of canals, roads, irrigation systems, municipal buildings, and fortifications within the city.

Master of Forces

The Master of Forces is the Commander in Chief of the armed forces for the city. He or she manages the recruitment, training, logistics, and deployments of the City's army.

Master of Enforcement

The Master of Enforcement is the leader of the municipal police force. They are responsible for patrolling the street as a deterrent to crime, as well as catching and prosecuting those that commit crime.

Each of the ministers will have a list of priorities or projects they would like to achieve, as well the budget required to make those priorities or projects happen. Different individuals may have different interpretations about what their job entails, and how best to carry out those duties. Which is why it is important to interview your Masters before you set them loose.

Essentially, the game could just play itself. How deep down into the details you as the player want to be involved with is a matter of taste. You are there to make high level decisions. That's it. Kind of like real royalty. But unlike, say, Fallout 4 and it's settlement system you won't be bothered with pesky messages to come rescue City Z. They'll just be a smoking ruin when you get back. (But that's not the end of the game, you can always go off and found/schmooze/invade/etc your way into a new city.)