Can You Fend Off 20,000 Zombies? – They Are Billions Review

by Sammy Chan

In They Are Billions, you will build the most magnificent colony. Upgrade everything to the fullest, prepare the best defense. But just as you’re starting to feel good about your base, the billions will raze down everything you’ve ever accomplished. That’s the game in a nutshell for you. It’s hard, it’s challenging but it’s a whole lot of fun. Here’s our They Are Billions review for you if you need a little convincing.

Familiarity With A Twist

The survival and zombie genre has been one that we have (and will be) getting a lot of. Despite the saturation of genre, They Are Billions manage to put an RTS twist on it, giving the game a fresh feeling. The UI itself looks like any classic RTS UI.
Future Earth has been overrun and humanity has fallen to the undead. As one of the few remaining survivors, your task is to build a colony. It’s never that simple, of course. Once you got your basics set up, you have to make sure it thrives and is capable of surviving the horde. How? By building defenses. Turrets, walls and your army will help you combat the undead. Meanwhile, the colonist will work on maintaining the whole operation. There are 8 resources in this game that you’ll have to manage: gold, worker, food, wood, metal, iron, oil and energy. Each of them is important to your progress and survival. So, on top of thinning out the herd, you’ll also have to manage the economy of your colony.

Another element that comes in to play is expansion. You could start off by building walls around a small area in the beginning. Soon, you’ll find that you’re looking for more land to expand your colony. This is one of the key elements to the game’s success. There’s always something new to do in a single game. Not to mention the constant challenge you’ll soon learn and face when it comes to expanding.

Days Survived: 58

Having clocked 10 hours in this game, it’s safe to say that this is a rather difficult game. I started up the game selecting the hardest mode, 80 days, and the thickest swarm possible. I thought, why not? This isn’t my first RTS game, I know the drill– I have never been more wrong. Managed to survive up to day 58 before the game showed my behind a swift kick to the game over screen.

It brought back a nostalgic feeling of younger days where my first ever PC game was Age of Empire and later on, Starcraft. I’m a fan of RTS for sure, and this game definitely delivers.
Despite having an hour plus of handwork demolished in a matter of seconds, there was no hesitation in starting up a new game. Every play-through teaches the player something new and how to prepare better the next time around. It wasn’t until my fifth play-through I figured out how useful a ranger is when it comes to herding the horde. There are many strategies that you can try (and fail) in this game. That’s exactly what makes it so addictive and fun. There was never a single dull moment in each play-through. There are so many things to do and manage, you’ll never get bored. It’s just the right amount too, so it doesn’t feel overwhelming.

High Replay Value With Huge Potentials

Despite being an early access, game, the game is already running rather smoothly, performance wise. In my 10 hours of playing it, I’ve not encountered any crash or performance issues.
That aside, it also has a good bit of content going already. There are 4 maps to choose from. However, you’ll have to unlock them by winning the map prior. There’s the Dark Moorland, the Peaceful Lowlands, the Frozen Highlands and the Desolated Wasteland. Depending on which game duration and infected population you pick, you’ll be given a different score factor. For example, choosing 80 days for the game duration and high population for the infected population will give you a score factor 320%. In future updates, there’s probably going to be a ranking feature.
There are 4 different game durations to choose from with 150 days being the easiest and 80 days being the hardest. It doesn’t which duration you choose the size of the horde on the last wave is still the same. Longer days just means you have more time to prepare your colony for the attack.
From time to time, groups of zombies will attack the colony. You can also determine how big this group is via the infected population option.
Even in such early state, the game already has high replay value. For now, there’s only the Survival Mode to play from but a Campaign Mode is in the works. According to their Steam page, the developers are aiming to release the Campaign Mode in Spring 2018. This will be in the form of a free update to buyers of the Steam Early Access version. Check out the developer’s blog for a detailed insight of the campaign mode.


The fact that They Are Billions is still in early access shouldn’t deter you from getting it. Even in such an early stage, as mentioned above, the game already has an ample amount of content to keep you occupied until the next update. We definitely recommend this game to any RTS fans. You’ll build your colony, you’ll get swarmed and destroyed and you’ll rage. But, we know for sure you’ll be thinking about doing it all over again. Pick the game up before 5 January 2018 to enjoy the 10% off.

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ash47 05/01/2018 - 10:31 am

If you’re looking to play some custom content for the game, check out the community made level editor, which allows you to make custom maps.
Here’s a link to a video about the level editor:
Here’s a link to a video that shows off one of the community made maps, which features an endless mode:

They Are Billions The Six Wonders helps improve late game - Best In Slot 07/05/2018 - 4:56 pm

[…] The game that blew up big time, especially Twitch, is back with another game-changing update! Numantian Games is introducing new buildings alongside new feature and some balancing tweaks. Let’s take a look at the They Are Billions Update 0.8. You can also check out the trailer featuring The Six Wonders above! Still curious about the game? Check out the review here. […]

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