Generally favorable reviews- based on 5 Ratings
Positive: 2 out of 2
Mixed: 0 out of 2
Negative: 0 out of 2
Aug 21, 2011A gem of a turn based strategy game, although it does have it's rough edges.
You have a choice of 4 factions who while relatively similar have enough significant differences to mean they all play differently to each other. You start by building a deck of cards, and then play a game on a standard 2D hex-based map using these cards, moving units around with battles and other events handled with dice rolls. The entire game revolves around dice rolls so there is a significant element of luck, but there are numerous options to alter these dice rolls in your favour.
There is a decent variety of units and options for defeating enemies, while the use of 5 different resources (4 economic and 1 action based) ensures the game is complex without at any time being unbearably so. There is no campaign or story (other than a very brief bit of background in the manual), or multiplayer, with a sandbox game against the AI featuring randomised maps used instead. Overall the gameplay is good, although having played it through a number of times it does appear that some strategies are more dominant than others.
After playing it a lot one of the problems that starts to come to the fore a bit more is the lack of customisation of the battle settings to make things harder - you can choose the number of (AI) players, their factions, and the map size. However you can't create teams, or change the difficulty of the AI. Having said that the AI seems reasonably competent, and an option does exist to play without saves. The various deck building opportunities and different factions also greatly improves the game's replayability.
While the graphics on the map itself aren't great the artwork on the cards is very well done. There is decent background music, but the sound special effects are very limited.
The other slightly negative point is the game initially isn't very accessible - there is no in-game tutorial, so you'll be reliant partially on figuring things out for yourself and on using the manual. Although the manual is extensive this is also it's problem, with much of the detail that it goes into overwhelming at first where just the basics of how to play are needed. After a couple of games you should have a handle on the basics of playing though and then be able to appreciate the information in the manual better.
Overall this game is a bit like civilization crossed with magic the gathering - if you like turn based strategy games then you should like this, and if you like deck building you should really like it!… Full Review »