Paradox has been speaking about Cartel, which by the sounds of things is heavily inspired by the original Syndicate.
In fact, it also seems to be a partial response to Starbreeze’s own Syndicate remake.
“We have tremendous respect for the Starbreeze guys, they make great games, but the announcement sparked a discussion about ‘what is in a name?’. What makes a Syndicate game? The world? The gameplay? The platform? The name? What is it? Cartel was born out of this discussion,” says Paradox’s Shams Jorjani.
Cartel will feature both real-time strategy style missions (in which your corporate agents embark on sabotage, assassinations, espionage and the like) and a global strategy map in which you expand your devious 1980s-esque megacorporate empire. Just as in the original Syndicate, it seems your goal is one of total global monopoly.
According to Jorjani, the missions will also have dynamic, randomised aspects to them: “Although events in the missions will be scripted as part of a campaign, we are also expecting to make the missions themselves dynamic. So if you are sent to assassinate someone he might take his car on one run through, or go to the public transport terminal on another.”
Likewise, emerging events on the global scale will demand your attention and tie-in to the missions themselves (a rival in your company may need to be taken out, for example). “The cartels have global operations going on all the time, so you will need to work out where you want to focus your efforts – in Eastern Europe? Or South Africa? You’ll be researching and have technology programs, and you will also have diplomatic relations with both other cartels and nations within the world,” Jorjani says.
It’ll also be possible to tweak the game to your preferred style, so if you favour the missions over global strategy you’ll be able to leave certain matters in the hands of the AI. Jorjani hints that it’ll be “almost” possible to play through just as a pure strategy game too.
Cartel is quite a way off at present (Jorjani feels it could be ready “in 12-18 months”) but sounds quite enticing for those who were a little disappointed by the Starbreeze announcement.

Paul Younger
Founder and Editor of PC Invasion. Founder of the world's first gaming cafe and Veteran PC gamer of over 22 years.

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