Empire of Sin - Dev Diary #3: A Strategic Start

Empire of Sin - Dev Diary #3: A Strategic Start

  • Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

MissDeliana

Sergeant
Community Ambassador
25 Badges
Jul 3, 2018
93
203
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall - Revelations
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall Sign Up
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Age of Wonders III
  • BATTLETECH
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • BATTLETECH: Flashpoint
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
astrategicstartChicago.jpg


Starting Empire of Sin has a familiar cadence boss to boss. You’re going to run into someone you know on your way into Chicago, and between the two of you, you’re going to come to some kind of decision about the best way for matters to proceed.

Out on the street, it’s now time for the early-game strategy to begin.

Lay of the Land
When I arrive in Chicago, there are two primary things that I am concerned with. First, I want to get a lay of the land. I immediately zoom to the world map from street view to get an idea of where I am and who else is here. For me, it is also one of the most exciting times in the game. I’m discovering who else is here, what they might already own, and what is nearby for the easy taking. The locations of other safehouses also gives me an idea of the level of security I need in the early game. If you’ve played any games that take place on a map (and I have a feeling most of you have), the survey of the starting map is equal parts discovery and “ass on fire.”

When I first arrive in the game or in a new neighborhood, I am looking for these things, and I’ll cover these in this post.

Safehouses
Obviously, I’m here, but who else is? A look at the map reveals nearby safehouses. The quantity and location of said safehouses is critical. It’s important for me to learn who owns these safehouses. Each boss has their own personality which means they might be more aggressive with their territory and thus have a desire to roll over mine. If there are no safehouses (unlikely), I’ll have a good start getting this neighborhood to myself. If there are two, but we’re spaced out, I feel like I have a chance to get a foothold. If there are three or another close to mine, however, it’s time to hustle. From this early lay of the land and the quantity of safehouses, I am making decisions about putting money into security to protect my budding empire vs. putting money into production to up either the quantity or quality of alcohol I’m making. For my rackets, I need to think about drawing people into my rackets with a word of mouth upgrade vs putting people by the door to keep the other faction riff raff out. I might play a bit more risky because I’ve been playing since milestone 1, but I tend to take my chances early on, getting more cautious as the game progresses and I have more to lose.

Chris King views this slightly differently. For him, knowing who the other bosses are isn’t as important. He tries to hold back and waits to find out who the other factions are when he has grown in power. The turtle strategy has you shy away from areas with other safehouses and instead focus on growth in other areas.

In the image below, you can see that I have a busy start. There are two other bosses here. When I figure out who they are, I’ll decide how I want to act. One advantage of taking out a boss before they really get going is that you can quickly grow your empire (the disadvantage being that they can quickly grow theirs, and it’s game over).


strategicstart1.jpg


Agendas
Whether you’re on the world map or the street view, before long, you’ll see others checking out the world just like you are. Often, it’s people exploring (the binoculars icon). Sometimes, however, it’s people who are out for blood like the gang below.


strategicstart2.png


In this start, I am concerned firstly because the other safehouse isn’t too far from mine and they are already expanding close to me. They’ve sent out an extermination squad which I’m willing to bet are coming for me. I can head them off before they get to my racket or trust that I have set up a sufficient number of guards so that they can hold the place on their own.

As the game gets more advanced, I often use the world map to monitor what my enemies are doing and to avoid people who it might be a challenge for me to run into.

Breweries
Having a brewery early in the game is absolutely critical to your survival. Prohibition relies on a healthy supply of illegal hooch. You can get a brewery one of two ways: buy one or take one over. Breweries are pricey, however, and this results in the first interesting decision a player needs to make.

  • Do you spend your money on a brewery, but have to scramble for rackets or gangsters?
  • Do you take over a thug’s racket and pay to convert it into a brewery? This costs less than purchasing one outright. With every fight, though, there is a risk of injury or death.
  • Do you take over another faction’s brewery thus saving a bunch of money but starting off your career with an early enemy? It doesn’t cost you anything to convert like for like (take over a brewery, and it’s free to open it as your own brewery.)
  • Do you go the pure vice route and opt to build your early empire with brothels? Brothels are profitable without alcohol?
  • Do you opt to build a small collection of rackets like casinos and speakeasies while beefing up the small brewery in your safehouse to supply them? Do you make an early trade deal with another faction?
Each player has their own opinion of an ideal starting state. In a perfect world, I am really hoping that I’ll roll a brewery nearby run by thugs. This is a reoccurring pre-game fantasy of mine: I’ll jump into the game, and there will be a small brewery right next to my safehouse that I can take over with just a gangster or two. If it’s owned by thugs, I can take them out, and it’s mine for free. If it’s owned by another gang, I might still be able to take it over. Sure, it won’t get me off to the best start with that faction, but I hope I’ll be able to improve that or form an alliance with someone more powerful. The key is to get yourself a brewery to power your empire, however you do it.

Look for the Bonuses
Scattered throughout Chicago are caches left behind by other criminals hoping not to get caught. If you get to these first, they are yours for the taking. The way I usually spot them is to look for groups of thugs who seem to be guarding something.

strategicstart3.jpg


The caches range from a bit of cash or alcohol to something more game changing like $50K. Because of the amount of thugs surrounding this cache, I decide to hire a couple gangsters rather than going it alone.

strategicstart4.jpg


With the enemies cleared, the cache is mine, and fortunately, it turns out to be the €50K I was hoping for. The other bosses in my neighborhood are toast.

strategicstart5.jpg


Back to Breweries
Up to this point, and if you looked at the screenshots earlier in this article, you might notice I haven’t actually gotten the brewery that I have been raving on about. With $50K, now it’s not going to be a problem! I could purchase a building and convert it thus saving life and limb, or I could take over another racket pay less than market price to convert it into a brewery which is precisely what I decide to do.

strategicstart6.jpg


Next Up
Hopefully, this gives you a good idea of how to get your criminal empire off the ground. In our next Dev Diary, we’ll cover more gameplay! Stay tuned!
 
  • 12Like
  • 6
  • 3
Reactions:

Eber

AARficionado & Storyteller
Demi Moderator
72 Badges
Sep 24, 2003
984
221
  • 500k Club
  • Crusader Kings III
  • VtM - Bloodlines 2 Blood Moon Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Surviving Mars: Digital Deluxe Edition
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Imperator: Rome Deluxe Edition
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Stellaris Sign-up
  • Surviving Mars: First Colony Edition
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Divine Wind
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For The Glory
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Deus Vult
  • Mount & Blade: With Fire and Sword
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Victoria 2
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
Looks very interesting. One thing I'm curious about is if there are different ways to winning the game besides taking out your competition through violence. Is that the only option or will we be able to maybe raise the heat level and have our competition get arrested? Or other ways like that?
 
  • 4Like
  • 1
Reactions:

kalauer

Colonel
83 Badges
Jan 28, 2007
1.142
840
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • The Showdown Effect
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Warlock: Master of the Arcane
  • War of the Roses
  • 500k Club
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris
  • Hearts of Iron IV Sign-up
  • Stellaris Sign-up
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Divine Wind
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Dungeonland
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Knights of Pen and Paper +1 Edition
  • Leviathan: Warships
  • Magicka
  • Majesty 2
Brothels are profitable without alcohol
But even more so with it. Imagine the possibilities: drunken customers who certainly won't call the police if say ... they discover the next morning there was a hole in their pockets.

Also: with 50k at the beginning being such an important boost, how random are these drops? Too much rng at gamestart is not something I value too high. Just my opinion of course.
 
  • 1
  • 1Like
Reactions:

Andre Bolkonsky

Gazing up at the blue, blue sky
36 Badges
Feb 28, 2002
1.775
1.107
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Steel Division: Normandy 44
  • Cities: Skylines - Mass Transit
  • Steel Division: Normandy 44 Deluxe Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Cities: Skylines - Green Cities
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Cities: Skylines Industries
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Cities: Skylines - Campus
  • Hearts of Iron IV: La Resistance
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • War of the Roses
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Pillars of Eternity
Looks very interesting. One thing I'm curious about is if there are different ways to winning the game besides taking out your competition through violence. Is that the only option or will we be able to maybe raise the heat level and have our competition get arrested? Or other ways like that?
Frank Costello, the Prime Minister of the Mafia, was the man who has all the Judges and Politicians in New York City in his pocket. He stays in power when Luciano is removed by an alliance with Albert Anastasia - the Lord High Executioner.

For this to remotely resemble the era, the sound of Chicago Typewriters (Thompson SMGs) has to fill the air and someone has to grease witnesses, the cops and the courts. There is the left and right hand of the Mafia.

So, yes, I hope what you say is incorporated. But if you do not flex muscle in this scenario muscle will be flexed on you.

Want an example? The Policy Banks, of which the Tia Juana Wheel and our Mortician friend above represents one of dozens in Chicago, came under control of the Chicago Outfit when Sam Giancana learned the tricks of the trade from Eddie Jones in the slammer. Momo took off the top layer of Policy Bank leadership using extreme violence, and started scraping off the profit for his own Family by those left alive willing to play ball with the Chicago Outfit.

https://gangsterreport.com/chicago-policy-wars-the-outfit-numbers-takeover-timeline-momo-makes-good/
 
Last edited:
  • 2Like
Reactions:

BrotherJonathan

Captain
44 Badges
Jun 15, 2015
371
249
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Hearts of Iron IV: La Resistance
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Victoria 2
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Knights of Honor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
Looking good, although I do agree with some of the others posters that the RNG aspect shouldn't be to overwhleming.
 

Magdaki

Just Another Friendless Blorg
77 Badges
Sep 13, 2011
595
719
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Sword of the Stars II
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Stellaris
  • 500k Club
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Knight (pre-order)
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Stellaris Sign-up
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Cities: Skylines - Mass Transit
  • Crusader Kings Complete
  • BATTLETECH
  • Surviving Mars
  • Stellaris: Humanoids Species Pack
  • Surviving Mars: First Colony Edition
  • Shadowrun: Dragonfall
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall Sign Up
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Stellaris: Ancient Relics
  • Cities: Skylines - Green Cities
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Prison Architect
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Cities: Skylines Industries
  • Surviving Mars: First Colony Edition
  • Victoria 2
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Teleglitch: Die More Edition
  • Magicka
This is what I've been waiting for. To see some of the strategic gameplay. This looks quite good! You might just bump off the "maybe" list and onto the "will get" list.
 

Andre Bolkonsky

Gazing up at the blue, blue sky
36 Badges
Feb 28, 2002
1.775
1.107
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Steel Division: Normandy 44
  • Cities: Skylines - Mass Transit
  • Steel Division: Normandy 44 Deluxe Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Cities: Skylines - Green Cities
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Cities: Skylines Industries
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Cities: Skylines - Campus
  • Hearts of Iron IV: La Resistance
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • War of the Roses
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Cities: Skylines Deluxe Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Pillars of Eternity
How exactly does the map work? Is it generated for each gameplay like in Gangsters: OC or is it standard?
It is a map of 20's era chicago. That can't change.

The neighborhoods controlled by different factions might