God games have been around a long time, but few have actually been based on the player being anything but a fist from above. Crest is a god game, but it’s pretty different from the rest. The developers actually refer to the game as a “religion simulator,” rather than a god game.

In Crest, you’re a god who gives commandments to those on the planet below. Your followers will do your bidding without question at first. But as you issue more commandments, attitudes may change. Some groups of people will interpret your words in different ways, leading to different faiths who may not accept or be amiable to other interpretations. Some may become disillusioned with your seemingly contradicting messages. Some will associate what you say at a specific time to a specific place. So, in other words, it’s a lot like how religion works out in real life.

In the demo at PAX West, only the very beginning and basic gameplay was on display. And that was a good thing because the game seems to have incredible depth and could easily get overwhelming for the player. I started off with one group of people who I commanded to settle in a different region, collect resources, and start making babies. You make commandments by combining three different elements. First you select the group of people you want, the action that you want them to take, and the end goal.

For example, in the demo I commanded the people who lived in the Savannah to travel into the jungle and establish themselves there. Once that group was on its way, I commanded the next group to produce infants. After completing those tasks, the full access to all of the different elements of gameplay opened up. I really wanted to dig into the game deeper, but I would have spent the entire day there and would have barely scratched the surface.

Crest is available in Early Access mode on Steam. I’ll be taking a closer look at the game and giving you more information in the future.

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Nicole has been playing games her entire life. Now that she's a mom, she's passionate about promoting games as a healthy pastime to other parents around the globe. She has been an editor at IGN, where she launched and hosted the Girlfight podcast. In her spare time (which is not very much, honestly) she enjoys gaming, reading, and writing fiction. Most of the time she’s a mom to a crazy, intelligent, and exhausting little girl.