The new game from Saber Interactive looks like Darkest Dungeon at a steampunk circus

Circus Electrique, being developed by Operencia maker Zen Studios, is expected to be out later this year.

Have you ever wondered what Darkest Dungeon would be like if featured a neo-Victorian circus troupe battling murderous zombies in the streets of steampunk London? That’s a pretty specific addition to the ol’ wishlist, but if that’s what you want then Circus Electrique(opens in new tab) might be just the thing. 

Circus Electrique features elements of story-driven RPG, tactical combat, and, yes, circus management sim. It follows the adventures of a cast of classic circus performers—strongmen, escape artists, clowns, and more—as they struggle to save the city from the ravages of the Maddening, a supernatural upheaval that turned thousands of innocent citizens into vicious murders.  

It was first announced in late 2021, but today we’ve got our first in-depth look at actual gameplay, and it does bear a resemblance to Darkest Dungeon: A party of four characters (selected from an eventual total of 15 classes) line up against similarly-arrayed enemies and engage in turn-based combat, exchanging special moves and abilities until one side comes out on top. 

Positioning and morale also play a big role in battles, and so does the mental state of your individual fighters: If the morale of any of your characters falls too low, they’ll actually run away from the circus, leaving you to find (and train) a replacement, or try to get by without. 

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