Heart Shaped Games
Based in Chelsea, Michigan

Release date:



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We Are The Caretakers is an afrofuturist real-time sci-fi squad management game inspired by XCOM, Darkest Dungeon, Ogre Battle, Northgard, and human-environmental conflicts around the world. Unite cultures to protect the people, animals, and ways of life you depend on, after the massive energy barrier that separates you from a wider universe mysteriously falls.


We Are The Caretakers (WATC) draws on the first-hand experiences of real world rangers and researchers to model and evolve the human-environmental concerns of today on a truly cosmic scale. The game introduces players to an original sci-fi universe with nuanced societies, deep mysteries, layered management challenges, and escalating conflicts that have no easy or absolute solutions. Developed by a critically-acclaimed, award-winning, and diverse team including IGF nominees, ex-Microsoft, and ex-Blizzard developers, We Are The Caretakers is the most powerfully-designed and ambitious Heart Shaped Games project to date.


  • ORIGINAL AFROFUTURIST UNIVERSE: Former Activision-Blizzard artist Anthony Jones brings breathtaking afrofuturist style and human empathy to the complex sci-fi world of We Are The Caretakers.
  • DEEP CONSEQUENCES: Every action committed in the world has an effect on how the Caretakers are treated by others, and their ability to protect the endangered Raun that define their way of life.
  • HUMAN SQUADS: Assemble squads from individuals with diverse traits, abilities, and personalities, each with geographic and personal ties to the land they patrol. Train and upgrade your Caretakers across 20+ unique job classes.
  • HUMAN PROBLEMS: Communities have needs which must be addressed to retain support, and gain new avenues of access. Rangers get tired from midnight marches.
  • HUMAN SOLUTIONS: Spend as much time finding ways to help the people and animals surrounding your society as you do tracking poachers.
  • LAYERED CHALLENGES: Given a limited amount of resources, players must juggle challenges with domino effects that reach from the heights of the global strategy layer, to the radiated depths of the vast plains your humanitarian forces cross to deliver supplies.
  • TAILORED GENERATION: Procedurally-generated maps are created within sophisticated guidelines to ensure limitless variety that retains the singular storytelling and emergent moments enabled by one-off level design.
  • COMPLEX CONFLICT: An innovative combination of turn-based combat, intent deduction, and permanent consequences shows the human cost of conflict, as well as provides alternative ways of resolving situations that fall outside of strict personal combat.
  • NUANCED NARRATIVE: IGF-nominated narrative designer Xalavier Nelson Jr. creates a morally-complex world with human emotion at the core of every scenario, where the individuals outside your squad matter as much as the rangers you deploy on each map.
  • CULTURAL DIPLOMACY: Meet international and community leaders inside your sci-fi HQ, considering how each of their conflicting demands will affect your ability to influence their factions in the future.
  • RIGOROUS RESEARCH: Guide the direction and specialties of your organization by choosing field-level technology upgrades and large-scale research projects with nationwide impact.
  • YOU GET A BABY RAUN: It will nuzzle against your bed long after it grows too large to reasonably do so. It is adorable.


We Are The Caretakers Announcement Trailer YouTube



Awards & Recognition

    We Are The Caretakers has not received any awards or recognitions yet. Please check back later to see if things change.

    Selected Articles

      • "We Are The Caretakers stands out from the crowd with its afrofuturist stylings and environmentalist bent"
        - Dominic Tarason, Rock, Paper, Shotgun
      • "One of my most anticipated indie titles of the coming year."
        - Jacob Wood, Indie Hangover
      • "Afrofuturist squad management RPG We Are The Caretakers feels like an important next step for XCOM-esque titles."
        - Jeremy Peel, Wireframe Magazine

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      About Heart Shaped Games

      Heart Shaped Games is a design-centric independent game studio focused on building meaningful and memorable games. Founded by former Mircrosoft Xbox LIVE Arcade Producer Scott Brodie, we build games players love!

      More information
      More information on Heart Shaped Games, our logo & relevant media are available here.

      We Are The Caretakers Credits

      Scott Brodie
      Game Designer, Programmer

      Anthony Jones
      Art Director

      Xalavier Nelson Jr.
      Narrative Designer

      Elan Gleiber

      Ben Parise

      Sara Eskandari
      Artist And Designer

      Kate Brodie
      Studio Manager

      presskit() by Rami Ismail (Vlambeer) - also thanks to these fine folks