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Video Game: SimAnt

"Few ant colonies last very long, but maybe, with your help, this one will survive."
—the introduction to SimAnt on the SNES

An early game in which you control an ant colony by manipulating pie charts and selectively controlling the actions of individual ants whom you choose (e.g. moving the queen out of danger or leading a group of other ants into battle as a member of the soldier caste). The objective is genocide: kill the red ants, and then drive out the humans and take over their house, and you win. Originally a computer game, the game was also ported to the Super Nintendo.


This game provides examples of:

  • Animate Inanimate Object: The evil lawn mower
    "The evil lawn mower has sucked you into its whirling blades! Your body is reduced to a thin slime."
  • Antlion Monster: Antlions are an obstacle. Basically, they force you to be more careful with the auto-pathing since your ant has no real sense of self-preservation.
  • Ant War
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: The game cannot emulate more than 100 ants while you're looking at the surface.
  • Booby Trap: Antlion nests outdoors, power sockets in the house. Death to all who enter.
    • Not quite. If you gather a large enough ant army, you can take on the antlions and turn them into food.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: You play as the black ants, the enemies are the red ants. Your character is the yellow ant. Pure and simple.
  • Enemy Eats Your Lunch: The cause of 80% of ant-on-ant violence.
  • Forgets to Eat: As your ant walks around, your hunger meter goes down extremely fast. It is quite easy to starve to death in mere seconds. Even more ridiculous when you starve to death while carrying food to the nest (in your mouth). Luckily, if you have recruited other ants to follow you, they will take the initiative and feed you. At least in the PC version your ant gets more combat effective the hungrier it is.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: see Silliness Switch, one of the quotes when two ants are fighting with the comic bubbles on is "Better Dead Then Red"
  • Giant Spider: The Spider gives this impression to the ants.
  • Grand Theft Me: (PC/Mac Version) You can swap bodies with any other ant at will, including the Queen or the useless breeders. Can be good for ditching a starving body at the last moment, or avoiding enemy ants as a form of crude teleportation.
  • Hold Your Hippogriffs: With the "funny" captions on, many ants will provide dialogue in this style, as if they were fresh out of a Hanna-Barbera cartoon.
  • Humans Are Cthulhu: The human inhabitant of the house often commits genocide for seemingly arbitrary reasons, such as using bug spray and the lawn mower, or even just walking around outside. If you proliferate enough, though, you can win the game by punching out Cthulhu.
  • Hurricane of Puns: The manual is full of ant puns. Quite fantastic, don't you think?
  • Jump Scare: Getting killed by the spider while wearing headphones may result in spine-chilling emotional trauma.
  • Keystone Army: You can conquer an area or win a scenario just by being lucky enough to kill the red queen in one shot.
  • Luck-Based Mission: The primary law of playing Full Game Mode and Scenario Mode is this: If you don't get to the food first, your colony WILL become outnumbered and die off from starvation. Simple as that.
    • Full Game Mode is very disappointing for the fact that it's basically a race to colonize all 49 areas of the house which means that winning and losing the entire game all boils down to whoever gets their breeders up in the air first.
    • The physical layout of Scenario 6 (SNES Version) is notorious for having constrictive bottlenecks which makes it very difficult to get access to food as a large number of AI controlled ants will get jammed up in one area. You can turn this to your advantage by quickly building pebble walls to cordon off the red ants from the middle area which is usually enough to starve them to death.
    • Scenario 7 (SNES Version) is almost impossible to win as most of the food falls on the red side of the Porch. However, a quick way to win is to run to the Red Nest and kill the Queen yourself.
    • Scenario 8 (SNES Version) is basically a death race towards armageddon as there is tons and TONS of food everywhere. The first colony that collects 70% of the food will eventually win by sheer weight of numbers alone.
  • Not So Weak: A queen still has a good chance of winning against a worker, but not such a good chance against a soldier ant.
  • Offscreen Teleportation: The Spider will always respawn on the map in an area where you're not looking.
  • Silliness Switch: The PC and Mac versions include an option to add silly sound effects to the game, and word balloon commentary from the ants.
  • The Swarm: You can lead one in a colony of sufficient size. Select an ant, move into a populated area, use the gather command, and pretty soon you will have a horde of them following you and ready to attack any hostile you come across.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: As mentioned above, you can change your player to be any other ant in the game. This means you can make yourself into the Queen and deliberately walk into the path of the spider. Hell, you can even be the spider.
  • We Cannot Go On Without You: Scenario Mode requires extra caution when playing as you only have three lives. Lose all of those needlessly and the colony perishes without you.
  • We Have Reserves: If and when you die, you immediately gain control of an ant that newly hatches. If the death images haven't scared you off.

SilverballIBM Personal ComputerSimon the Sorcerer
Sid Meierís Pirates!AmigaSimCity
Sid Meierís Pirates!Apple MacintoshSimEarth
SimEarthVideo Games of the 1990sSimTower
Shadow PresidentSimulation GameSimCity

alternative title(s): Sim Ant
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