Turmoil: the fever of the black gold


Picture the setting, you're a newly turned oil hunter in the early US Western frontiers, with money on the brain and a need to get in on the rush. To fulfill this need, you travel out to the virgin ground near one of the fledgling towns and decide that there is just as good a place as any to start getting rich. Of course, becoming a successful, loaded oil baron isn't as easy as other people made it out to be.

Turmoil is all about mining for oil, just in case you hadn't got that yet, and trying to make more money over the course of the campaign than any of your three rivals. It's brilliantly simple in its execution, very easy to pick up and actually incredibly addictive once you get into the swing of things.

You'll start off with ten thousand dollars to use for your operations, as will your competitors, at the beginning of the campaign. Every level requires three thousand dollars to play because you spend a minimum of one thousand actually buying the land in an auction before the level starts, then an additional two thousand on actually going to the site and digging.

Before even starting to drill down, a dowser is needed to 'locate' the oil. These guys are diligent, I'll give them that, however, they take their sweet time finding any oil spots when you've only got four months (ten minutes) to get as much money as possible. Also, there's a serious issue with them finding oil on top of a structure, because you can't build on stuff that's already there, nor can you destroy buildings.

But when you find your supply of black gold, you can finally get things under way. Using a combination of multiple silo's and wagons, you move the oil from either the drill pump to storage, or from storage to the Left and Right Inc merchants. Just avoid spillages, as they cost $600 a pop.

This is one of the more interesting mechanics, the additional of two opposing houses means you're able to weight their prices against each other, forcing you to constantly switch from one to the other in order to gain more profit.

Basically, it's pretty intense in the earlier stages because you need to break even to continue properly. Once you begin completing each dig site, which lasts about five to ten minutes in real time, you'll start to see that other people have set up shops back in your hometown. These townsfolk offer a variety of upgrades for your operations.

For example, the inventor gives you access to faster dowsing or deeper dowsing scans, which allow them to detect oil at greater levels. All in all, these upgrades are a sure way of making your oil harvesting way more efficient in the long run.

After you've unlocked the Saloon and you've got a few upgrades under your belt, you will probably start to hit big money. It helps if you are smart too, as each site will be graded from one, being terrible, to fifty, meaning amazing, after a person has dug there. Try to pick one that may have a higher number, without attracting the attention of the other players.

If you've got the knack for managing three separate drills with twenty wagons all moving round to sell your oil at the highest prices at the nearby Left or Right factories, then you can make ridiculous amounts during a single round.

Turmoil succeeds brilliantly at being a unique, engaging title that really envelops players once they start to hit it big. Aside from the smaller flaws surrounding the repetitive nature of tasks given and the fact that you can't destroy your own structures in place of new ones, its design and creative ambience is undeniable.

Name: Turmoil
Developer: Gamious
Publisher: Gamious
Released: June 2, 2016
MSRP: $9.99

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