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We Are The Caretakers

Platform(s): PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X
Genre: RPG/Strategy
Developer: Heart Shaped Games
Release Date: 2021

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PC gamer, WorthPlaying EIC, globe-trotting couch potato, patriot, '80s headbanger, movie watcher, music lover, foodie and man in black -- squirrel!

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'We Are The Caretakers' Celebrates Earth Day With Steam Early Access Launch

by Rainier on April 22, 2021 @ 4:16 p.m. PDT

We Are The Caretakers is an afrofuturist real-time sci-fi squad management game inspired by XCOM, Darkest Dungeon and human-environmental conflicts around the world.

Turmoil has overtaken humanity after first contact with an alien civilization. Take command as the Conductor, one who’s sworn to protect the Shadran society and their endangered rhino-like species of Raun. Under threat from poachers, Caretakers must take up arms against those who would destroy what remains of the Raun and their home, saving the animals from extinction and continuing their tradition as wardens of Shadra’s most susceptible.

We Are The Caretakers combines real-time strategy with turn-based combat. Deploy squads of high-tech conservationist protectors led by the Conductor. Inspect the map and secure towns, while protecting Shadra’s beloved Raun that roam the fields. Nurture a special baby Raun who takes a liking to the Conductor and watch as they grow into a force to save their kind. 

Recruit detained poachers, but keep an eye on the reputation of the Caretakers: the right decision is not always the popular one, and might make future missions more difficult. With more than 20 job classes, procedurally generated levels that feel hand-crafted, and a morally-complex world, We Are The Caretakers places Conductors into a complicated, exciting world full of strategic decisions and challenges.

We Are The Caretakers plays host to an original sci-fi world with an afrofuturist vision. Characters, environments, and the story blends elements of man-made and organic science fiction sporting a distinct African influence. The soundtrack combines epic orchestral sounds, African instrument samples, and modern hip-hop beats.

We Are the Caretakers fights to protect virtual and real-world wildlife starting today, Earth Day, on Steam Early Access for $19.99 with a 20% launch discount.

To support real-world conservation efforts, developer Heart Shaped Games will contribute revenues from the game to non-profit organizations that support wildlife conservation efforts. These include the previously-announced contribution of 10% of the developer’s revenues from the We Are The Caretakers game to the Wildlife Conservation Network’s Rhino Recovery Fund, which focuses on improving the health of rhino populations while also benefiting local people.

“In our quest to have a quantifiable impact in the world with our game, we’re proud to work with real-world groups like WCN,” said Scott Brodie, founder, Heart Shaped Games. “Raising awareness is important, but we wanted to make sure We Are The Caretakers has a real, lasting impact on supporting animal conservation efforts.”

Heart Shaped Games is a diverse, talented team featuring art director Anthony Jones (former cinematics artist at Activision Blizzard) and narrative designer Xalavier Nelson Jr. (IGF nominee, narrative director for Hyperspace Outlaw). The studio is headed by Scott Brodie, a games industry veteran with almost two decades of experience under his belt, including time at Microsoft Game Studios as a producer on Xbox Live Arcade.

We Are the Caretakers boasts a rich soundtrack composed of epic orchestras, African instrument samples, and modern hip-hop beats. Art director Anthony Jones (former cinematics artist at Activision Blizzard) combined synthetic and organic elements for his interpretation of afrofuturism and the game’s cast of mostly Black characters. BAFTA and IGF-nominated narrative director Xalavier Nelson Jr. (Hypnospace Outlaw, SkateBIRD) helped create a story that mixes sci-fi with real-world conservation issues.

Key Features:

  • ORIGINAL AFROFUTURIST UNIVERSE: Former Activision-Blizzard artist Anthony Jones brings breathtaking afrofuturist style and human empathy to the complex sci-fi world of We Are The Caretakers.
  • DEEP CONSEQUENCES: Every action committed in the world has an effect on how the Caretakers are treated by others, and their ability to protect the endangered Raun that define their way of life.
  • HUMAN SQUADS: Assemble squads from individuals with diverse traits, abilities, and personalities, each with geographic and personal ties to the land they patrol. Train and upgrade your Caretakers across 20+ unique job classes.
  • HUMAN PROBLEMS: Communities have needs which must be addressed to retain support, and gain new avenues of access. Rangers get tired from midnight marches.
  • HUMAN SOLUTIONS: Spend as much time finding ways to help the people and animals surrounding your society as you do tracking poachers.
  • LAYERED CHALLENGES: Given a limited amount of resources, players must juggle challenges with domino effects that reach from the heights of the global strategy layer, to the radiated depths of the vast plains your humanitarian forces cross to deliver supplies.
  • TAILORED GENERATION: Procedurally-generated maps are created within sophisticated guidelines to ensure limitless variety that retains the singular storytelling and emergent moments enabled by one-off level design.
  • COMPLEX CONFLICT: An innovative combination of turn-based combat, intent deduction, and permanent consequences shows the human cost of conflict, as well as provides alternative ways of resolving situations that fall outside of strict personal combat.
  • NUANCED NARRATIVE: IGF-nominated narrative designer Xalavier Nelson Jr. creates a morally-complex world with human emotion at the core of every scenario, where the individuals outside your squad matter as much as the rangers you deploy on each map.
  • CULTURAL DIPLOMACY: Meet international and community leaders inside your sci-fi HQ, considering how each of their conflicting demands will affect your ability to influence their factions in the future.
  • RIGOROUS RESEARCH: Guide the direction and specialties of your organization by choosing field-level technology upgrades and large-scale research projects with nationwide impact.
  • YOU GET A BABY RAUN: It will nuzzle against your bed long after it grows too large to reasonably do so. It is adorable.

We Are The Caretakers is in development for Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and PC, scheduled for release in 2021.


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