32 bits? :(
The Fertile Crescent
A downloadable game for Windows, macOS, and Linux
This is the home for the original alpha version of TFC: The Fertile Crescent, which was regularly updated from 2018-2021! Download this version to see how the game played at an early point in development.
Steam Early Access
In 2022 we released TFC: The Fertile Crescent to Steam as Early Access!
Settle your people on fertile land, gather resources and construct your village, as the commander of a Bronze Age civilization in the Near East.
Inspired by the rise and fall of historical civilizations, you must manage the delicate balance between food production and the maintenance of your army, for a decrease in food sources can push even the mightiest of civilizations to collapse.
You'll take part in epic battles over fertile land and resources, use food surplus as a currency to train armies and acquire new technologies, and mine metal to equip your army with copper and bronze equipment.
- 10 minutes tutorial to give you a basic understanding over how to command your people
- Protect your people against, and eventually defeat, an enemy military outpost with three difficulty levels on an auto-generated map
- Up to 4 players on dedicated servers (supporting host migration)
- Cross-platform play between Windows, Linux and macOS
- Regional servers: Australia, EU, South America, South Korea or US
- Friendly community that has helped us shape and balance multiplayer for years
Need someone to play with? Join our friendly community:
The file you download is a launcher that will auto-update the game every time you run it.
For macOs users, after you open the .dmg file, a folder with the executable should open. Make sure you drag the executable to another location, eg. desktop, before opening it.
About the development
This passion-project was developed in our spare time for 48+ months. We tried to release a substantial update every one or two months. Check out our development blog to learn more about how we developed the game and made progress.
The Fertile Crescent is no longer in early development. We signed a publisher deal and have now launched a Steam page for the game:
Any feedback is appreciated! Thanks in advance.
|Platforms||Windows, macOS, Linux|
|Tags||2D, ancient, bronze-age, Isometric, Multiplayer, Pixel Art, Real time strategy, Unity|
|Average session||About a half-hour|
|Multiplayer||Server-based networked multiplayer|
|Links||Facebook, Blog, Discord|
Unzip and run the executable.
- TFC: The Fertile Crescent is EA on Steam!Mar 30, 2022
- Game Trailer!Dec 08, 2021
- Steam Multiplayer Demo and Tournament!Nov 16, 2021
- 0.6.8.5 - Video Development Blog, Balance and Bug fixesNov 08, 2021
- 0.6.8.4d - Minor maintenanceOct 10, 2021
- 0.6.8.4b - Minor maintenanceSep 30, 2021
- Steam page announcement (with link!)Sep 21, 2021
- 0.6.8.4 - Reworked wall and watchtowerSep 13, 2021
Log in with itch.io to leave a comment.
I am wasting my time.
Is it difficult to point out that it is 64 bit software?
Hi there. I've just downloaded and played the game. But, I have some problems loading my save game. I'm from SUSA, a very fertile crescent city, and would like to help in any case.
Hello! Unfortunately save games are a bit broken in this version. We are no longer maintaining it as we are focusing on the Steam version which is currently in Early Access.
Hi, we haven't made any plans for this so there is not much to say yet. However, we will definitely assess this in the future. Sorry if that didn't fully answer your question, but at this point we just don't know 100%.
Thanks for replying, as I will add this to my future purchase down the line. "If you do, decide later to release it on GOG as it's a must-have for me.
Also, I enjoyed the demo as it took me right back to the good old days of gaming with a solid foundation & excellent gameplay that kept me wanting more.
I'd love to see you guys make a populous remake.
this game slaps
Pretty good basic concept, but...
1) Going towards Steam only means I will not be able to play it much more: Steam breaks on my NON-WINDOWS PC.
2) Game balance is an issue. I have not won a single game--every time the enemy kills my farmers, which leads to my people starving, and revolting before I can get food production back up. If, instead, my people would slowly die, I might be able to rebuild before they die off over time. But the revolt thing simply ending the game harshly makes it far too difficult. I even tried to dedicate all but a couple villagers to food production, but I still could not produce enough. the enemy killing my farmers just made it more difficult.
My very first game was as close as I came to winning: I had built an army and destroyed everything except the enemy town hall. Then suddenly, my people revolted against me and ended my game. Apparently, two enemy troops went off to the side, avoiding my army, and proceeded to break through my walls and kill my farmers. I was focused on guiding my army against the enemy, so did not notice my food reserves rapidly depleting until it was too late to rebuild. Very frustrating.
1) We're releasing to macOS and Linux as well, so I'm sad to read it won't be playable for you at all on Steam.
2) There are a few things you can try if you haven't already:
- Make walls and watchtowers to defend your settlement so enemies can't get to your farmers; you can even put villagers in watchtowers if you need to so enemy axemen can't reach them (and they receive bonus armor against enemy ranged units)
- Use your villagers as your last line of defense, as they are decent fighters against at least the first waves, and even more so with the Militia research; even use all your villagers to defend if you need to (don't let them just stand there and get killed)
- Make sure you research Plough as soon as you have some farms to make sure food production is efficient
- Research Code of Law after making Palace, which increases villager training speed, so you can replenish villagers you lose faster
- Research Apothecary so villagers gain + health and heal faster
- Always make sure you've stockpiled some food befor making additional military units to make sure you afford maintaining them
Apart from that, we thank you for your feedback ! We are working on making sure the game is accessible as possible, and one of the things we need to do is to make sure it's more clear when you're under attack.
Re: 1) It is Steam itself which is an issue on my machine. It requires some libraries that conflict with other (and more important than games) software on my machine. Note that I sometimes have the same issues with Itch and GOG apps/games as well, so that is, sadly, an issue related to my system and not your game. :(
Re: 2) I have done all of that. There are some issues I did not go in to detail...
A) Only idle villagers will defend themselves. They might survive better if they stopped what they are doing to defend themselves.
B) I try keeping my villagers as a "last line of defense", but the idle ones will be aggressive near enemies. I have to give extra time and attention to micro-managing them... which is the problem: I am not a computer that can micro-manage tens or hundreds of villagers per second, nor re-assign them fast enough to halt a starvation rebellion.
C) I am always _trying_ to stockpile food, produce more than I am using, and building granaries near food sources to speed them up. Every wave of enemies has the tendency to disrupt and deplete my food production and reserves. (Strategically, this is how reality works as well. But reality also has real people who can think for themselves and act upon needs and priorities.)
As a side note, it might also help if villagers standing around idle would (or in towers) would automatically go repair structure nearby which are damaged. Some of the AI logic, however, makes this problematic -- I tried to position some villagers near walls and towers so I could quickly assign them to repair, but when an enemy came within range, the villager would go chase them... Even if the villager had to walk across the map to pass through an opened gate to get to the enemy.
Another issue is with gates. It might be better if they could automatically open for my units and close (and/or stay closed) when an enemy unit is nearby.
Lastly, it might help if units could move atop walls, either to attack nearby enemies or perform regular patrol actions.
Anyhow, my point(s) are aimed at one basic issue that is constant in the game: Time (and rapid micro-management). Slow down the rate at which a revolt happens (or as I said, eliminate it, and instead let units slowly die off from starvation; or some combination of the two), giving the player a more balanced opportunity to both identify when there is a problem and execute corrective actions. The UI itself compounds this because there is no way to quickly move to a problem spot so I can correct it.
Without those complications, all the problems I mentioned would be relatively minor annoyances rather than fatal and frustrating flaws.
Thanks again for the feedback!
I wish I could see you play live. :)
A) We'll add this to the backlog.
I tend to select a bunch of villagers at once to help defend, and then use the "back to work" button after the battle.
We're taking note of everything you write, so thanks again.
I finally won a couple games, but I had to drastically change my strategies and tactics to less intuitive ones:
1) I noticed that the AI does not actually build anything beyond what it is given at the start (town hall, 2 houses, 4 towers, barracks, and archery range), harvest resources, research technologies, etc. Instead, the game just gives it/builds stronger combat units at regular intervals--without regard to housing or resources available. To me, this is "cheating" and makes it more of a "Tower Defense" type game.
2) As a result, I changed my strategy to a simpler one... Do the same as the AI is doing--quickly build an army and rush the enemy location to destroy it's archery range and then barracks. I lose a part of my army from the enemy towers, but since the AI is not rebuilding the range or barracks, it does not matter; Once both are destroyed, I can send in smaller groups to destroy the towers (and soldiers in them) at my own leisure.
The downside of all this is that:
A) It pretty much eliminates any real depth to strategy; As I stated, it is more of a "Tower Defense" type game.
B) It greatly eliminates the game's replayability. There is almost no reason now to vary my strateg(y/ies) according to the map/terrain. After a couple games, I have now lost interest in the game.
C) It limits the usefulness or need for much of the game infrastructure. Why waste time with all the research? You only need a minimum of research to be able to neutralize the AI. And there is little reason to even fight the AI over control of "limited resources".
D) The enemy grows unchecked. In one game, I destroyed the enemy archery range but not barracks. After awhile, there was a large swarm of dozens of enemy barracks units running around damaging or destroying my structures as fast as I could rebuild or repair them. While that was kind of fun, it sent my CPU usage to 100% and I had end the process.
1) Make the AI follow the same rules as the player, so it has to produce villagers to gather resources to build structures and units. You can adjust AI difficulty by other means, possibly even under player control, such as "Villager Move Speed * 1.5", "Villager Gather Amount * 1.5", "Villager Carry Amount * 2.0", etc.
2) Create "infinite resource" items in some locations. Deep copper mines, trees and berry bushes that regrow, animal spawn points, etc. Give players and the AI something to fight for control over.
Those two suggestions would affect and improve most or all of the game downsides. Of course, you would have to implement a "real" AI instead of the simple one used now (no build/rebuild, unlimited housing and resources, etc).
Lastly, just to note, I did see one thing I liked: Villagers trying to slay and gather meat from Boars... Having the Boars gang up and try to fight back was a nice twist!
The AI you play against here is scripted and not very advanced, as you say. Currently, the best part of this version, is multiplayer.
It's a pity you can't access the Steam version, because we are currently making skirmish AI for it. It will play with the same rules as the player. We're also adding new game modes. I'm not sure when and I can't make any promises, but we'll look into releasing the game on other platforms as here on itch.io.
Things to fight over is also a good suggestion, and something we plan to add as a content update to the Early Access version.
Dude this game is very fun. I have a small problem tho. There are no Saves
oh, and can you add warships and stuff
I did a test now and it seems save games no longer work for some reason. Unfortunately, we are currently not maintaining the itch.io version but we will add saves to the Steam version in the future which is maintained. We'll add water and boats in the future as well.
The loading is broken when load a save the loading screen goes forever FIX THIS NOW I LOVE THIS GAME!!!
Hi and sorry to hear about your issue! For the time being we are not spending resources on the itch.io version, as we're working on an upcmoming release of the game. Have you checked out the Steam Demo? It has all the same content. It doesn't have save games, but it has new art, many general improvements, and is more stable:
well can you please add save games to the steam demo I would love that anyways thank you goodbye
I need saves because im playing sandbox mode and I need saves for that so please add it.
Sorry for the invoncenience! We plan to add save games to the full game but for now there are so many changes we are making as the game is still in early development, so it's hard for the save games to keep up without breaking.
I have returned to this game as I usually do in sometime of each half of the year. This time I have had the most fun! My experience was largely undisturbed by bugs except for a small bit of "spiratic camera action". I greatly anticipate the Steam release, LincRead!
All the additions and small, but potent and great, changes were wonderful. The Wonder was my favorite addition, other than the change to enemy buildings (which are much more strong; and gleefully so), and the GLORIOUS Trading Post (though I did not realize it until after I had avoided my crises). Military Invasions seem much more tough, and I love that. I avoided dismantling my enemy's Captial Building and took out all others except it (so I could play longer on that save) and it feels very, very fun and satisfying; after that one last push (of straining on resources, because my enemy was in a very lush land) and defeating them and then settling the area, and then allowing the civilization to flourish (Trade, Wonder Construction, and harnessing my enemies resources) was epic. I truly had the most fun this update, as said earlier, I greatly anticipate the Steam release.
Edit: One thing I would be intrested to see is custom maps. Allowing people to recreate real-life areas (not to scale) like the Tigris-Euphrates, The Nile, or even the Levant (or whatever people want to create).
Another thing that would be very intresting is Sea Generation (with types: Salt or Freshwater; Shapes: South Shores (Libya/Egypt), Levant, and [Persian] Gulf), this could also bring in Naval combat, Naval Trade, and a new food source [fish].
Hello and good to have you back again! We're glad you like all the improvements we've added since you played last! Hopefully we can keep making you come back and enjoy what we add to the game in the future as well.
We're definitely going to add seas and fish at some point, and we will also consider adding custom maps. Thanks for the suggestions!
(Sorry for returing after a few days; hopefully you get notified)
What would the prospect of adding Cattle/Oxen be? These kinds of animal (Bovine) were revered and utilised by many cultures at this period of time. Sometimes due to Astrotheology (The Zodiac Ages). One thing I was thinking was maybe a Farm Upgrade, or a "Taurus" Temple of some kind (although we do already have the Palace).
I find it very intresting that many animals were added (Hogs, Gazelle/Antelopes, and Rams), but there were no Bulls or cows. Is there anything in the plans relating to Cattle/Oxen/Bulls?
Cattle Upgrade - (Technology) Player can now use any Bovine/Cattle for civilization purposes (Herding, Agriculture, Worship, and Military)
Change "Palace" to "Temple" and give Temple three upgrades (comes in later) (also only allow one Temple to Generate Knowledge Points, but Player can build more than one Temple; Note: I think a Palace should still be in the game, but make Palace like a place for Kings and Rulers not the priets/Priestesses
Cattle - Pastoral in unused Greenery areas, can be herded by three "Herders"; Herders run to a Granary to drop off Food (Dairy); also Icon can be a Bucket for action
Used in Agriculture (Farm Upgrade) [better farm output/speed; do whatever you think is best]
Temple Bull - Additional Temple "contributor". Gives non-Knowledge Buffs. These buffs go according to the Temple Level.
- Level 1: 15% Military Damage Upgrade
- Level 2: All units (including Civilians) move with more haste (speed)
Level 3: (If player has Milita Technology) Has its own Milita Range/Extension
War Bull - Damages crops, Buildings, and Enemy Units (but very, very slow and pretty weak damge to Buildings, Huge Damage to Units)
One thing that I have become fascinated with is the upgrade/stage feature. I would like to see this across all the structures already in the game, like homes become more elaborate (with patterned windows [pretty much just color dotting to indicate patterns]) or fresco/mosaic things on walls (any walls not necessarily the [Defensive] Wall(s).
Hello! I do get notified. Sorry for the slow response as well. :)
Thank you for providing more suggestions! We are thinking about introducing bovines in one way or another, probably for example aurochs as huntable food, but we don't have an ETA for it yet. We might also be looking into experiementing with domesticated animals/herding at some point, but we are very careful when it comes to adding new mechanics, to make sure they add to the fun factor and not just make the game more complex, so we'll see what happens!
The game is really fun. My only problem is that the game needs more military advancements and a bigger map, also coop would be cool like a 1v1 type thing.
Thanks for the feedback! With the 1v1 thing, do you mean playing against 2 computers with a friend online, or something else?
i love that the game is still being worked on. i havent played the game yet but from what i see the game is verry intresting
Hey, thanks for the love! We hope to continue working on this game for a long time. Let us know what you think when you try it! We are aimning for Steam early next year. :)
I don't think that I got a file for Mac
What does that file look like
hi, i just downloaded the mac version but it seems not working. it says error and couldnt find the specified file. is there any updated version that i can upload on mac? thank you !
Hey! Did you try double-clicking the file to see a folder with its executable, and then drag that file to another location?
For a limited period you can also get the demo on Steam:
Hey can you help me because I have the same problem as voldemoyt
I saw the same problem with macOS after updating to BenSlur. I followed steps and then first time opening the file dragged to Desktop it gave me error, but then it worked the second time I tried opening it for some reason.
Hello everyone! This is one of the first games that I have played and tried to support on my channel and I cant say how happy I am that its now got to the point that they have their own steam page with the chance of wish listing it. (Which of course I did :D )
Incredible work from the developers went into this and best of luck to them. Also thank you to the community here for helping to make this game a success that now will eventually be released on steam.
Thank you :)
Thanks for the coverage! We can remember you following the game for a long time, which is appreciated. :)
Hey guys, just downloaded the zip file, unzipped to a folder in Program Files, and try to run it... I see the custom mouse cursor and then a brown themed dialog: "Error: Cannot find the specified file". Edit: Just moved the folder to Desktop and it's working. How come I can't put it in Program Files?
Hey! We're using third party software for the auto-updater. I haven't seen this specific problem described before, but maybe it doesn't get proper access to write files there on your computer? On my computer administrator access is required to copy the files over to Program Files and I have the same issue.
Thanks for your reply! I was thinking the same thing hey. (And I’ve always thought it’s weird that “enable administrator access” just means “click ok” lol) but yeah I reckon it’s to do with permissions in Program Files. That’s why I thought to try it from Desktop. If you haven’t seen it before then doesn’t sound like many ppl have tried putting it in there!! Now I’ve had a chance to play it for 30mins, really enjoying it as an AoE fan from early days. However the window steals mouse focus and I can’t get the cursor out of the window at all, eg to move mouse cursor across to second monitor. Never seen that before. I tried hitting ESC but nothing. I’m on Win 10 on a Surface Book 2. Have you seen this before?
I haven't seen this mentioned before either, haha!
I think we have toggled the engine to lock mouse cursor to screen because of the feature that you can move mouse to the end of the screen to move camera, like in the good 'ol RTS games. If the mouse disappears into another screen then this feature won't work very well..
Maybe something to consider as a setting to toggle for a future version?
last time im playing this game is 2 years ago and now this game is on steam
good job :)
Hey!! absolutely love your game, its scratching an itch ive had with needing RTS type games. You all have SO much potential. What engine did you use??
The game resolution is like 1080x1080 for me, windowed or full res same thing
I have 3 monitors, is there a way to set the correct resolution?
Hey, sorry about that! The game picks the resolution automaticallly based on screen resolution, and windowed is automatically a little bit under. What resolution do you run on the 3 screens?
its 1280x1024-1920x1080-1280x1024. but hasn't been configured as a single screen, so it looks like a bug to me. I mean the game runs only on the main screen as it should but instead of 1920x1080 I'm getting like a phone screen and I cant see the construction menu when playing.
I tried on W11 running on a VM and the resolution was as it should but even there I cant see some of the tool icons. I had to use the keyboard shortcuts.
I think the resolution option should be added.
It was a fun game to play tho. great job!
How I can help with translation? or can you add russian language?
Hi, we haven't added support for localisation, so it's not possible to translate yet, but when we do we'll let you know. :)
I really like the game, and it is very interesting for me.
It is mostly bug free with the exception of walls. What happens is I build some wall around my fairly large settlement, but each unit of wall is counted as 1 building. Then, "Why can't I build anything?"
I understand that there has to be a limit to the amount of structures in the game, but this makes walls hard to use. Thank you for developing this great game.
Hi, thanks for the feedback! I believe you encountered a bug that can occassionally happen that prevents more buildings from being constructed for the rest of the game. It's not by design, as you should be able to build unlimited walls.
how can i resize the windowed version?
Hi, I have a chromebook and i downloaded the Linux version but the file doesn't give the option to install when I right click it. Please help.
Does your Chromebook support Linux apps? Linux users usually run the launcher file which downloads neccessary files from newest version of the game automatically.
could you please show me or link a video on how to do so? I'm sorry I'm not a Linux expert
I have macOS 10.14.1 with MacbookPro 8,1 (late 2011) and the app is not launching... is it compatible with my configuration?
Hey! Unfortunately we haven't tested on macOS versions prior to Catalina 10.15.X, so we can't say for sure.
Is it available for windows 32 bit?
Really fun can't wait for full release! Already I think it has a nice level of challenge, at least for me :P
Thanks for the comment. For a long time now we've been mostly working on ensuring the base game works well, but we can't wait to start working on more content and modes!
just beat the game after an hour of trys, a ton of fun! can’t wait for the full release
Thanks! After many years of prototyping, we're finally working towards a full game now. :)
I can't play. I'm on Fedora Linux and when I run the executable it shows the game for split second and just closes.
hello, i downloaded the game just right now and the installer seems to be having an in game error. it tries to update and then says error cant find the specified file. how do i fix this?
Hi, are you on macOS? Did you drag the file to another location before opening it?
Also, being behind VPN or firewall can hinder neccessary files from getting downloaded.
Just played the game and its excellent, so much so that I'm inspired to build mods for it. Any plans on making the game moddable? maybe a lua extension?
Hi, it's not something we focused on from the start so hard to say, but might work on it in the future. We're aware RTS games are great for modders, so we'll consider it.
I love this game! Honestly, the only game I really keep track of for updates lol, can't wait for future updates :0! Especially a save one lol, good luck on development :D!!!!!/g
Thanks for the feedback! We're finally releasing our next update very soon.
Save games will be added in an upcoming update as well. :)
Hi I've just downloaded this game for Windows but can't get it to run before the can't find specified file error pops up. The program on first run does throw up a defender smart screen warning that I bypass though.
Any help would be appreciated.
Hi, a few things that pop to my mind are that you need to make sure you unzip first, and firewalls and/or VPN can make the server reject your connection so that the neccessary files aren't fetched from it.
Lovely game! One of my favorite AOE-likes around, and I'm always glad when a new RTS gets built. I'm hopeful about when you get some more advanced SP content built.
We also love when new RTS games gets made and hope more developers do them in the future. The more advanced SP will come!
I love it, but there are a few things you'd like to add such as LAN games, group control,...And also save game option is necessary
You can assign groups with CTRL + NUM, add units to groups with SELECT + NUM. Save games will come. :)
I love it! Clean, minimalist in style but surprisingly deep inside. I wish the single player aspect will be beefed up with scenarios, campaigns. One technical issue: I play on a 14' Thinkpad laptop screen 1080 x 1920 p (Win10). The UI/fonts are way too small and there is no setting for game resolution. I have to switch to desktop resolution 1366x768 to play comfortably.
Kudos to developers and long life to The Fertile Crescent!
why the latest version not working on macOS?
Hi, do you have the newest version? I just tested a game between macOS and Windows without any issues.
I test two computer, macOS 11.0.1 and macOS 10.12.6, the game version is 1.0 I download from the latest itch.io download page
the game is show checking for updates...
after long waiting, the game show "can not find the specified file"
I want to know if the game is must connect server, maybe the server can't be connected in my country。
if YES, how to set proxy for the game?
Hi, this can be one of two things:
1. You haven't dragged the .dmg file out of zip to another location before opening it.
2. Your firewall (or if you're on VPN) blocks the server from giving you the files. The files are located on Google Drive, so if Google rejects the connection, the files don't get downloaded.
I play on mac and when i try the tutorial part, I can't click to turn off the first message box to play the game, pls help
It seems people have problem with the macOS version. I will look into this shortly.
I uploaded a new version 0.6.7.6b. Can you try again now?
Feels like it would be much more elegant if starvation just made first military units lose HP slowly, then villagers. Wouldn't that reach a nice equilibrium? Instantly losing because of starvation feels like you got cheated
I guess the amount of HP loss would be have to be proportional to the food deficit.
Nice progress on the game lately, however in the last update 0.6.7.4 I cannot build anything any longer. Everything else is working perfectly. Platform is Linux x64. Will provide screenshots if needed. Thanks for looking into this!
Hi, I will try to upload a new version to see if it helps. No issues on Windows or macOS, which are my own test machines.
Edit: before I investigate, is this something that happens at the very beginning of the game, or are you able to construct buildings but then suddenly mid-game you are no longer able to?
I can always build the first building that produces villagers and then when I click the hammer icon, instead of seeing available buildings I select a few or no villagers. I do hear the sound of clicking if that helps. Also I am 99% certain that the problem was not there in version 0.6.7.3.
Hey, I understand what is happening now. The bug was introduced in the latest update. Will fix and upload soon! :)
Thanks again for reporting. :D
We've made the following changes (0.6.7.4b) and uploaded to all platforms:
- While creating unit selection box all UI buttons will ignore interaction
- The above point means that when creating selection box you will no longer see any tooltips when dragging over UI elements either
- Hotkeys are ignored while making unit selection box
- Fixed upgraded Javelinman animations loop bugs