Tropico 4 Gold Edition - having started my journey to totalitarian rule back in Tropico 3 I was excited about the potential of Tropico 4.... perhaps I could conquer local islands and start building a force to be reckoned with? Maybe I could manipulate some smaller states to start working for me in exchange for the copious amounts of money and propaganda at my disposal? Perhaps some whole new facet to the game was going to lift this to the next level....
The answer to all of this is no. Essentially, if you have Tropico 3 and were like me looking for something to build on the existing game you'll be disappointed. For me, this is a bit of a money grab of a game. Sure there are some new features but nothing wildly different from 3.
Let's be clear though, I love the concept, I really want to take over the populace of wherever I am by any means whether they be devious, strong arm or friendly... yeah, right! It's always one of the first two. The point being, you can choose, so for those new to Tropico - I would say buy it, buy it now! Equally, buy Tropico 3. It's not a whole load different and probably a bit cheaper.
My issue with Tropico has always been development, so I control an island and I have in some way duped my populace into being happy or don't care that they aren't and have total control of their lives *pause for evil laugh*. What next? Go to another island and do it again. Sure the scenarios are all a bit different but I want to be able to go further. Sure there are some new buildings and amusing options but really this game isn't evolving and if it continues as it is will be a dead franchise before long. Shame, as I say, excellent concept but limited execution and delivery.
In short, buy this if you don't have 3. If you do, save your money.