It seems that you're using an outdated browser. Some things may not work as they should (or don't work at all).
We suggest you upgrade newer and better browser like: Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer or Opera

  • genre strategy / real-time / managerial
  • download size 18 MB
    ~19 min
  • avg. user rating from 237 user ratings.
  • release date June 5, 1989
  • compatible with Windows (XP, Vista, 7, 8) and Mac OS X (10.6.8 or newer)
  • languages English
  • developer / publisher Bullfrog Productions / Electronic Arts
  • game modes single-player, multi-player
  • Bonus content included for FREE with purchase:
  • manual

What's cool about it:

  • Includes Populous and the Promised Lands expansion.
  • Become a god, assume godly powers, shape civilizations, and make them all bow to your will
  • The power of light or the force of darkness? Holy wrath or divine miracles – you decide
  • Punish the infidels with plagues, earthquakes, and tornadoes. A ”little” volcano here and there might also convince them as to which god they should pray to


Miracles are child's play. Earthquakes are serious fun. The all-powerful can perform miracles in their sleep. But omnipotence isn't what it used to be. These days, it takes awesome natural disasters to dominate a world. You give them good land. You tell them when to farm and when to fight. You make them content beyond their wildest dreams. But then they become raging arsonists. What's a deity to do? Disasters are your divine prerogative - volcanoes, quakes, swamps. For stubborn non-believers, nothing beats a flood for spring cleaning. Cruel ice, lush grassland, parched desert... With 500 worlds, a deity's work is never done.

Populous is the original god-game, a strategy title that lets you shape the isometric isometric world and the fates of its inhabitants. Be sure to check out one of Bullfrog's earliest classics, from the mind of Peter Molyneux!

Minimum system requirements: Windows XP or Windows Vista, 1.8 GHz Processor, 512MB RAM (1 GB recommended), 3D graphics card compatible with DirectX 7 (compatible with DirectX 9 recommended), 2GB HDD, Mouse, Keyboard.


All user reviews:

User reviews:

Where it all started

Posted on 2011-09-01 07:31:04 byEclipse's avatarEclipse:

From the genius of Peter Molyneux, before Powermonger or The Beginning, before it was Black & White or any Fable, before any Magic Carpet roamed the sky and when From Dust wasn't even dust, there was a single true God simulator.
Populous was an earth shattering game, so full of innovation that the gameplay sounds quite alien even for today standards.
You are able to use yourread more powers to shape the whole world map, help your villagers or punish the infidels. And the idea of making the whole world a page of a book? That's pure art.
I'd love to see a Populous compilation in the future, with this one, the second, and PowerMonger as well.
And Populous: The Beginning as a stand alone release of course!

Was this helpful?(78 of 92 people found this helpful)

Historically interesting, but overshadowed by it's sequel

Posted on 2011-09-30 09:14:21 bynitrogenfingers's avatarnitrogenfingers:

Populous is a historically significant game as it marked the beginning of the rise to prominence experienced by Bullfrog (still one of the most original and successful game companies of all time), and the advent of the god game genre. I owned the sequel to this game, Trials of the Olympian Gods on the Macintosh. I've come back at a later age to look at Populous and don't see muchread more to come back for- everything this game does is done better by it's sequel.
For those unfamiliar with the premise, Populous can be a bit strange at first. As a unnamed deity you have a small legion of followers and are tasked with wiping out a group of separate followers worshiping an AI god. Producing settlements by flattening land makes up about 50% of the game, the other half is sent sending indirect orders to your followers to attack your opponent or casting various forms of godly vengeance on them- lighting, volcanoes and the like.
The game is fun but it feels a bit shallow. Levels do increase in difficulty, with harder gods, more complicated lands to settle and the like but the formula remains almost identical start to finish. There's not much in the way of visual flair here either- the cartoony graphics are cute but hardly engaging. God powers are a bit limited as well; there is some strategy here, but not much.
A lot of my criticisms are probably rose tinting from the sequel Populous II which improves on all these aspects through more varied and tactical powers coupled with a stronger sense of progression and RPG elements. Even then however, the game is still pretty simple and relatively repetitive, so the modern gamer may not find it worth their while.
What this game does provide us with is a marked demonstration of the boundless creativity of Bullfrog, later exemplified with Powermonger, Magic Carpet, Dungeon Keeper, Syndicate and many others. Especially when compared with a contemporary offering like From Dust or even Black and White, Populous probably won't stand up- what seems to have made it so successful was the virtue of being a well executed, unique idea. Certainly worth the time to check out.

Was this helpful?(72 of 85 people found this helpful)

Just what I've been waiting for

Posted on 2011-09-01 08:51:13 bysjleis's avatarsjleis:

This is the one game I've been waiting for more than anything else on GoG. Played it on an Atari ST when it was fairly new, and also acquired a (since lost) PC copy about 10 years ago and still greatly enjoyed it despite the low resolution.
Now just hoping that Populous 2 and Populous: The Beginning aren't too far away.

Was this helpful?(25 of 37 people found this helpful)

Be the first to review this game!

See all user reviews (13)

Populous games on

Populous™ $5.99 in cart OWNED
Works on:  +
Populous™ 2: Trials of the Olympian Gods $5.99 in cart OWNED
Populous™: The Beginning $5.99 in cart OWNED
Buy together and save

Customers who bought this game also bought:

Dungeon Keeper™ 2 $5.99 in cart OWNED
Theme Hospital $5.99 in cart OWNED
Theme Hospital
Works on:  +
Syndicate Plus™ $5.99 in cart OWNED
Syndicate Plus™
Works on:  +
Sid Meier\'s Alpha Centauri™ $5.99 in cart OWNED
Dungeon Keeper Gold™ $5.99 in cart OWNED

Discover games with GOGmixes:

Be the first to create a GOGmix with this game!
Bullfrog ClassicsbyFreelancepolice's avatarFreelancepolice

show more GOGmixes