Anno 2205: Stories of Possible Futures

Posted on Mon 31 December 2018 • Tagged with Video Games, Stories

I wanted to play Anno 2205 for quite a while because of its setting in the far future, being able to colonize the moon and all that, but I was never entirely sure it is the right kind of game for me. I usually stick to more story based games. However, after giving Surviving Mars a try and finding it overall very enjoyable, my opinion against buying the title wasn’t as strong as before. I consulted a friend who ensured me that if I liked Surviving Mars, there’s a very good chance I’d like Anno 2205 as well. Some time later, I snagged the game as well as all its expansions for €14.

Overall, I immensely enjoy seeing different visions of what our far future could look like, be it The Expanse, Anno 2205 or Surviving Mars, maybe even Deus Ex: Human Revolution. I truly hope we - as the human race - will make it that far without annihilating ourselves over petty conflicts or choking in our self-made garbage problem. Now, what is it that makes these scenarios more interesting? They have visions of what will be better, but the makers of these works of fiction acknowledge that the future will also have its own problems - something that comes up too rarely in “clean” fiction like Star Trek.

  • The Expanse has a myriad problems, from Earth’s overpopulation, to the political climate of Earth versus Mars, to the general suffering of people in what’s called the Belt.
  • Surviving Mars has at least one scenario in which a Third World War is happening on Earth. Leaving Earth for Mars is pictured as dangerous but also very promising, while conflicts on Earth don’t cease. While your Marsian colony is backed by an entity on Earth, you can make it without overly relying on them.
  • Anno 2205 has its own share of political problems with the first wave of colonists on the moon being very unhappy and taking military action against your cooperation back on Earth. The game also acknowledges climate factors, like arctic nights and smog. The further you progress the more you might be horrified by how much of what you ship around the globe are actually not necessary products but consumer goods. It’s a crass reminder of how far consumerism has progressed. I wonder if it might have made sense to include some waste management mechanic to convey a more ecologic perspective for the future.

With that prelude out of the way, let me tell you about a corporation called Abstergo Industries (I usually choose that Assassin’s Creed-inspired name for companies in video games).
Abstergo Industries started out relatively small in a region called Cape Ambar in Earth’s temperate region. It was there that they collaborated with Ibarra-FoxCom when trying to lift an old ark out of the depths of the ocean - a project that is still ongoing.

In trying to face the needs of both its customers and its employees, Abstergo expanded to Kinngait Protectorate, a region in the arctic. The company showed both its resourcefulness in settling the uninviting region as well as its good will towards the Arctic Custodians by helping with repairs and research concerning one of Earth’s Climate Stabilizers.

Dedicated Abstergo security professionals stopped several attempts by terrorists trying to disrupt Abstergo’s supply lines and operations. Its growth progressing smoothly, the company was proud to launch its own space station hosting a wealth of scientific experiments. Furthermore, their expansion onto Luna was a great success, with the first base being situated in Iwamoto Crater. Here, a collaboration with Cassian Industries led to a very profitable operation in mining meteroids. Only a while later, Abstergo would settle in a second lunar region, Novikov Crater, to help with refugee relief efforts.

Using a massive fleet of cargo ships, shuttles and space elevators, Abstergo grew from a small company into a massive MegaCorp and expanded into one more region - Vanha Plains in the Tundra. As the company developed, so did its awareness of logistics and environmental needs, leading to the implementation of several optimizations in its production processes building on scientific breakthroughs from its orbital science team. Fewer transport routes would be needed and more goods could be sourced locally. Additionally, in order to provide a clean environment for its inhabitants, Abstergo started separating sectors into living and production areas, leading to happier and healthier citizens.

With Abstergo drawing a healthy amount of investors, financial options seemed to skyrocket, leading to the company aquiring settlement rights for Walbruck Basin, Greentide Archipelago and Wildwater Bay. Development of these areas is still in progress and reports about local activity are scarce. Rumors have also surfaced about a potential health hazard from Vanha Plains, but the company keeps a tight lid on these issues.

Abstergo Industries has announced it will enter the stock market later this year.