By: Alehkhs

On: May 21st, 2012

When graphic designer Jon Caplin found himself with time on his hands while recovering from a broken jaw, he began work on a personal art-design project that drew from his memories of playing the classic god game Populous. What began as a simple hobby project arrives today as a full, completed game. Titled “Reprisal,” the finished product features one of the most gorgeous presentations of pixel art I’ve seen and is free to play in-browser.

Reprisal has its roots in the classic 1989 game Populous, by Bullfrog. Remembering his time with the game, Caplin says, “playing Populous, I realized the power of capturing someone’s attention making them lose hours of their lives playing games. I fell in love with those little pixel guys!” With Reprisal, he hopes to capture that same feeling and “re-introduce gamers to the original, simplistic genius of the early ‘god’ games.”


I would certainly say he has achieved that goal. The art of Reprisal is presented as a tilt-shift view of a tiny pixel world, providing the player with a sensation of looming over that in-game realm as if they were a deity. Over a campaign of 30 island levels, players must direct a tribe of followers as they collect scattered totems and rid the land of competing tribes. Collecting totems allows for the player to use elemental powers to aid their people, such as the ability to raise and lower land or to call forth natural disasters like volcanoes or tsunamis. All the while, the leaders of the other tribes will be doing the same against you.

Beyond the graphical presentation, Revival also boasts a full soundtrack of eight fantastic chiptunes by Eric Skiff. These tunes really add to the nostalgic aesthetic of the game while never distracting the player from the gameplay itself. I highly encourage this game not only for its old-school gameplay in homage to the god games of yore, but also for the fantastic audio-visual presentation – I would love to see a screensaver of the AI simply playing against itself in a full-screen world. Be sure to head on over to Reprisal Universe and check it out.


  • Anonymous

    Played the concept…. then the beta… it’s awesome! :)

  • Endurion

    Very nice!
    It captures the feel of the classic quite well.

    It does feel a bit sluggish on bigger levels though. The controls need a bit of workover, cursor and WASD feel slow. Also the mouse cursor location calculation for raising/lowering land feels quite jumpy, I often miss the intended location.

    Overall quite good!

  • Adam

    Looks very interesting!

  • Arne Döring

    except from controls well made, though no so much new if you played populous I or II.

  • Levi Morgan

    The music in that video is seriously so awesome.  No foolin

  • Guest

    Looks a little too close to Populous… Like copyright infringement close.


    Spamming whirlpool can be a very good tactic – get a few fort-thingies, then just spam whirlpool.

  • Nobody

    “one of the most gorgeous presentations of pixel art”

    No. Just no. Please play Metal Slug, and stick to your day job. Writing game articles isn’t your forte.

  • GayHomo

    Metal slug is meh.

  • Zuriki

    Like your opinion matters when you put GayHomo as your name.

  • Anonymous

    Who’s to say I don’t like Metal Slug?

    (I do)

  • Anonymous

    It’s funny that a GayHomo’s opinion would somehow matter less than a Nobody’s.

  • Paul Hubans

    Yeah, that sentence gave me pause, too. Other than that, it’s cool that the author wanted to do something similar to Populous; that’s a game I always wanted to love but could never quite figure out.

  • Beggs

    Who broke his jaw? And why?

  • Timothy Hsu

    this is waaayyyyyy overdue! And it does have great pixel art! Just because it isn’t as technically impressive as metal slug does not mean it’s not beautiful!


  • Riccardo Quagliarini

    What is the use of the Forest power?

    I may not have payed attention in the the first stages :P

  • Guest

     It’s not similar. It IS Populous

  • Polishgreenbeans
  • Anonymous

    Good game, spent three straight hours finished all 30 levels…

  • Anonymous

    Fifa 13 Foot Ball Game For PC Free Download My computer isn’t old, but I only buy weird computers. Point of pride.