The Settlers arriving on DS

The PC strategy franchise will make its console-gaming debut this November on Nintendo's portable.

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A long-running PC strategy-game franchise is about to settle on the Nintendo DS, marking the first time the series has ventured onto a console or handheld system.

The Settlers for the Nintendo DS, the latest entry in the series of PC strategy games that began in 1993, will see release on Nintendo's handheld in November, publisher Ubisoft said. Making use of the system's unique functions, you can swap the dual screens of the DS to use the DS stylus on both game views.

The Settlers is an economy-building strategy game, in which players control a group of pilgrims who arrive on an island. There, they must build roads, connect towns, forage for food, construct buildings, mine for resources, build a strong military to take on invading forces, and perform other civilization-building tasks.

The Nintendo DS version will feature four races of people (Asian, Nubian, Roman, and Viking) who can spread out across seven continents. The different land environments range from forests and lava to ice and swamps. Two campaign types--world and Roman--and a free-play mode round out the list of announced features.

The franchise began on the Amiga--an early hybrid of a personal computer and video-game console released in the 1980s--before adopting the PC platform with a string of releases starting in 1996. Last year's Heritage of Kings: The Settlers was the series' most recent game release.

The Nintendo DS version of The Settlers is not scheduled to be the series' only appearance this year, though. A graphically redone version of the first Settlers sequel, to be called The Settlers II: The Next Generation, is planned for release in the fourth quarter of this year.

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