Sigma Theory is the latest offering from the team of Mi-Clos Studios and FibreTigre, also known as the team who brought us the multi-award winning “Out There“, and it’s every bit as deep and evocative as it’s predecessor. To read it’s summary often ends with more questions than answers, so I decided that this was something I was going to have to look up once I arrived at PlayExpo.
I wasn’t disappointed. It’s a game that doesn’t sit too well with descriptions, as it’s blurb can attest:
“Sigma Theory is a single-player near-future espionage strategy game that takes place during a new cold war.”
However, once I started playing the preview that was available at the convention, it suddenly became much more clear. Sigma Theory allows you to hire spies- all of whom have their own strengths and weaknesses- and send them out to obtain information. How they get that information is up to you and what you do with it can either lead humanity into a utopia, or to ruin.
The joy in this game is that there are no bad guys, unless you decide to become one. Your spies have free will and can rebel against you at any time, depending on what you make them do or what type of person they are, and you can cause your spies to be caught and killed in action. Every choice you make will have a knock-on effect for the rest of the game and losing information does not mean that it’s Game Over.
This is a well thought-out game, that has a rather meaningful origin. When asked what sparked the idea for the game, the creator Michael Peiffert told me “it started with a discussion between me and my friend. We were discussing politics and how it is so easy for everyone to say ‘this decision, that the government has made on our behalf, it’s so stupid‘- but we don’t know the whole story. The politicians have so much more information, they have so many secrets and we thought ‘what if we can make a game, where we put people in this position?‘. So that’s what we did”
It’s easy to see how you could lose hours playing Sigma Theory. The game makes a complicated premise really easy to use, and it’s a credit to the developers. Most importantly, this game is fun- and I can’t wait to play more.