‘Forts’: My Most Anticipated Game From PAX Now in Private Beta

Forts Demo Video Image

Greenlit on Steam, Forts is my most anticipated game from PAX West. In Forts, a physics based RTS, you build your own, wait for it… fort, building the structure, adding weapons, and gathering resources, while in real-time your enemies are doing the same. It’s an arms race as you try to destroy each other’s forts while continuing to build. There’s a campaign mode as well as the ability to play with or against your friends online! Forts is scheduled for release to Windows in early 2017 and this cannot come soon enough.

But, for those who want a taste now, Forts is currently in a four-week private beta. Registrations appear to still be open and the beta runs from November 12 until December 9, 2016. At the request of the creators of Forts this post will contain no new images or my impressions from the beta. I anxiously await the day we’re given the go-ahead to talk about it!

The private beta currently includes the following working features (this was in the invite email, so…):

  • Campaign Mode – Battle for world domination in the single player campaign.
  • Multiplayer – Take on your friends in the 8-player online/LAN multiplayer.
  • Skirmish – Test your mettle against the AI in one-off battles.
  • Sandbox – Explore the building mechanics.
  • During the course of the beta, Earthwork will be engaging with the Forts community in a variety of ways, including:
    • Battle with the Devs – Take us on and try to blow our forts to bits, during these bi-weekly events!
    • Forts Private Beta Steam group – Be part of our dedicated group and discuss the best tactics and strategies with us and other players on the forums.
    • Build the Best Fort – Pit your creative constructions against other players in our weekly challenge.

I discovered Forts while preparing for PAX West and reviewing the Indie MEGABOOTH line-up. The Indie MEGABOOTH is my favorite part of PAX because I always discover tons of awesome here. My kids and I walk the aisles until we see an open game with no wait, and pop in to play. I usually have my kids do most of the playing, letting them enjoy themselves while I can watch how the game plays and talk with the developers. We always leave with a list of new games to play that we otherwise would have never have known about. If you do one thing at any PAX, be sure to go to the Indie MEGABOOTH. You’re sure to get tons of hands-on play, and you usually get to talk to the actual developers. There are both video and tabletop games in the MEGABOOTH.

When I saw Forts by Earthwork Games on the Indie MEGABOOTH line-up, I knew this would be one that my kids and I would enjoy. I made sure to go find them on my first day at PAX West.

Forts at PAX West
Connor Kenway playing ‘Forts’ at PAX West. Image by Ryan Hiller.

Forts reminded my kids and me of a game we play with pen and paper. Basically we draw a base, and play with Battleship-type rules against each other, altering the picture as we go, adding explosions, building onto the base and the like. We had discussed that we should try to make it into a video game, and while different, Forts gave us that feel.

My kids both got a chance to play Forts at PAX, building forts, selecting and firing weapons, destroying and being destroyed. I talked extensively with one of the developers and got signed up for the beta. It was hard to pull ourselves away when we’d used up more than our reasonable share of time on the demo.

If you’re interested in Forts, the closed Beta is running from November 12-December 9th and it’s probably a blast but I can’t say because I can’t talk about it!

Forts Demo Image
Image of a fort facing imminent destruction. Image from the ‘Forts’ trailer.
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