User Score
7.1

Mixed or average reviews- based on 230 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 50 out of 230

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  1. Aug 6, 2013
    4
    I didn’t finish the game, but I am finished with the game. I played for three hours hoping it would get better; Divinity: Dragon Commander can’t figure out if it is a strategy game, a RPG, or a card based game. It tries to be all three, and it fails hard. You should pass on this one.
  2. Aug 6, 2013
    0
    As a fan of strategy games which I play endlessly on my free time I was happy to see a new game out. Sadly this game should be put back into Alpha and pulled from the Steam store. The biggest issues I've had with it so far on Easy is within 3 turns I've lost my main base despite building units before they come to attack and while inside. They attacked with a massive army, how the hell am I suppose to stop that? 25% chance to win on 3 turns? Secondly I had a fight that had stated that I only had 1% chance to win but I figure I might as well give it a try. It started off good and then 1 minute in I went from 1000 population down to 500...wait what? Where did they all go? I didn't spend them. Then as the fight progressed and I started losing since I've lost half my population within the first minute and had only built a few units I scramble to get a decent size army going. Within 3-4 of minutes after spending 300 so recruits I was getting repeated messages that I was losing 4 recruits because the enemy had more buildings than me? Despite the fact my army was crushing theirs and we were making progress. So I sold my army production buildings when I took back a resource so I can build a new one. The 4 recruits being removed goes so quick and repeatedly that I had lost 100 something recruits and only 1 resource building built before all recruits are gone. What the hell is that? Last but not least, the auto-resolve system. Why would you dare make a strategy game where I can't fight all battles? Why am I forced to auto-resolve battles? Terrible just terrible system. Probably the worst $40 dollars I have ever spent on Steam so far. Expand
  3. Aug 21, 2013
    0
    I'll preface this with how I plan to end it: It's a con. If you're buying this game for the dragon, or for the promises that Larian originally made, don't. Please don't. Even if you don't trust me, I implore you to wait for a demo so that you can see for yourself.

    This game, to me, was a massive disappointment.

    Early on it was described as a dragon air-combat game with elements of
    political intrigue. What it is is avery poorly realised traditional RTS (traditional in the sense that it's similar to ancient RTS games like Dune, which just aren't great when compared to modern RTS standards); an unimaginative, watered down, and strategy-challenged take on Risk; some buffs and debuffs optimistically described as a 'card game;' and 'RPG elements' which are the precise equivalent of those simplistic Choose Your Own Adventure books from the '80s.

    Even the most redeeming point, the Choose Your Own Adventure elements, are ruined by the fact that your most important choices are made for you you cannot choose to not have a partner, you cannot choose the gender of your partner, and you have no agency or control over how the game ends (there's one ending, and it's not exactly what you'll have been looking for as the closing moments of your supposedly epic struggle). Infuriatingly, the game even builds up this fellow named The Architect as the big bad, then you never meet him. That would be like removing Sovereign from the end of Mass Effect.

    The RTS element is just nauseatingly phoned in. It's obvious that the so-called RTS section was originally designed as a MOBA, until they ran out of resources to create new unit types and just slapped a clumsy RTS interface over the top of it instead. The clumsy RTS interface doesn't hide that the AI is blobby and follows pre-defined paths (like a MOBA AI would), nor does it hide the problems with the dragon. The dragon feels like it was designed for a MOBA game (versus other hero dragons) and it would have agency and use there, but with the half-hearted switch to RTS the dragon becomes an afterthought rather than a focal element. There's fun to be had in the MOBA it could have been, had they finished it.

    The game was originally painted as having the dragon play an important role combating air fortreses of various sorts, with enemy dragons, and even with your own generals having their own dragon forms. You can see evidence of all I'm talking about in the screenshots and even the concept art, but a bait & switch was pulled by scrapping that. I wish they'd warned me so I could have requested a refund from my pre-purchase. If you were buying this game for the dragon... just don't. It's a con.

    I'd love to have received the game that Larian promised rather than what I got, because certain elements aren't terrible. The plot and the writing up until Act III, where it all goes to rot (demonic corruption a la WoW), and the characters are compelling even if your interactions with them are limited. I can see how Dragon Commander could be a good game, but the truth is is that it's an awful game.
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  4. Aug 9, 2013
    2
    The game has a tonne of character... but it fails on its fundementals. Once you get over the fact that you can turn into a dragon you find you are left with a bad RTS.
    The RTS part of the game is just flat out BAD. Very bad. Just click and zerg your units towards the enemy, no subtlety involved.
    Early game consists of charging to the undefended capture points. Run fast enough and you
    get to carry on with the level fail to capture them and the level is lost 1 minute in.
    Mid game consists of throwing waves of units at enemy bases to capture them while supporting with your dragon. No variation or subtlety.
    End game is reached when the map runs out of resources. It consists of waiting while making sure the enemies resource counter runs down marginally faster than yours. Often in the end game attacking is foolish as you'll use up more resources than you destroy which puts you closer to defeat. In effect this means that when the game begins to stalemate, you're encouraged to turtle up.
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  5. Aug 9, 2013
    4
    I really wanted to like this but it just felt unfinished and unpolished and extremely shallow. The RTS component is abyssmal and is about as in-depth as a flash game. The turn-based strategy is somehow less complex than a boardgame like RISK. The RPG (dialogue and diplomacy) elements feel completely out of place in that they are the best part of the game but it really isn't built around it. It's a really weird feeling. Overall it has been some of the least entertainment I've had while playing a game. The game would be fantastic if there was more too it but it's just so convoluted in design yet simplistic in execution that it falls flat on it's face. The only way I played past the first hour was auto-resolving every single RTS battle because it was that bad and strategy games are my favorite genre. It's cool that it is unique and tried something new but the execution leaves a lot to be desired. Expand
  6. Aug 13, 2013
    2
    Game is trying to be 2 or 3 different games and succeeding at none of them. Boring story with no unique elements but rather just cliched characters and plot devices. The RTS had pretty poor graphics and no real tutorial as to how to play. Sloppy looking and sloppy feeling version of an overhead RTS that you've seen done better almost anywhere else. The roleplaying elements were pretty cheap as well. Linear and irrelevant.

    The game is large and overwhelming to begin and it doesn't appear to pay off.

    The one thing I will say positive is that the game is smooth. The multiple screens and HUDs and interfaces transition quickly and without issue. They build the game well, the game was just poorly designed.
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  7. Aug 14, 2013
    3
    At this point, I have little to add about the gameplay itself, but I'd like to say that Dragon Commander's flirtation with 'current affairs' is equally mediocre and shallow as the rest of its parts.
    Certain reviewers seem to be ecstatic about the sort of terms thrown around (like "gay marriage", and "universal healthcare"), but the way they are presented, (not) discussed, and how their
    opponents are demonized (literally, the undead creatures without flesh are against women voting, for some unseen reason; and a fat capitalist pig (TM) talks against elven homsexuals, because 'obviously' successful industrialists are only attracted to one gender), all reeks of writing level that is beneath high-school. The flat voice acting only made me cringe further, upon hearing some of the lines.
    If this is an attempt at satire, it fails even at grasping the meaning of the word, and instead comes off as simplistic political conformism, which tries to make the game appeal to young audiences.
    In that, it is an insult to one's intelligence, but I guess that the bad writing fits in perfectly with the overall shallowness and mediocrity of every other component of the game.
    In short, do NOT buy if you're old enough to correctly spell your own name.
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  8. Aug 20, 2013
    4
    I can't understand people who gave 10 to this game. The game play is a normal RTS with some new ideas players can control the dragon in the battle..), however nothing very special. The graphics are average... for a 2013 PC only game i expect a lot better.
    The campaign is short, not well written and with strange events, for example: at the beginning of the game i had only 2 commanders,
    they were "hating" my character... then in the first turn i got a neutral territory, i came back to the story menu... suddenly 2 new commanders in addition to the first two are arrived. The old ones now don't hate my character and they said "great battle commander, you're a true warrior"... what battle!?!? I just moved my troops in neutral territory!!!
    This is an unpolished, unfinished, under average game. Not worth 10$. Dunno how they sold it at 40$!
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  9. Sep 7, 2013
    4
    this game is very nice in between the battles if you ignore the cheesy humor every now and then. the main part however the RTS part is its weakest point. checkpoint rushes is kind of the tactic that worked for me all the time.

    from the concept it reminds me on the latest Blizzard RTS title with its story choices between battles. but SC has much better RTS parts. on the other hand
    it was similar to Rise of Legends with the larger strategic map and the tactical battles, sometimes skirmish, sometimes fixed.

    but both these games do a much better job on the RTS part. however being immersed by "being" the dragon is something the other games do not offer. it does not quite distract from the poor strategy though.

    my result a VERY ambitious attempt that falls short where it counts.
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  10. Oct 26, 2014
    0
    The game really looks nice, but when u get to the level where the RTS side start its like a frigging RTS from the 80s, barely manageable, worst UI ever --> just plain bad. After hitting the RTS side, I uninstalled, damn what a bed RTS ...

    It's really a petty cos i really liked the story telling ... :/
  11. Oct 29, 2014
    3
    So much potetianl left untapped!

    Dragon Commander is an hybrid of RTS, card and board games of ambiutious proportions but lacking quality. On paper, the promised experience is astounding: you, the player, as a jetpacked dragon must rally an army to take the throne that's rightfully yours, in a steampunk-ish fantasy world, all the while managing your generals and counselors, all with
    their agenda and personality. The battles are fought in real time, the general army and empire management on a map a-la Total War, and the politics are handled in first person on your castleship. Sounds awesome, right? On paper, at least.

    Gameplay wise, the game's a mess! The RTS battles reward an aggressive tactic above all else, thus encouraging zerg rushes and win by starvation. There is no incentive in playing defensively, and whoever estabilishes a forward base first, wins. There is no reason in building a varied army but the two basic infantry units (Anti-infantry and anti-air), so most of the units are never used.
    On the Total War map, everything gets resolved in a blitzkrieg: ammass a moderate army, smash the first line of defense, and rapidly occupy all the territories but the capital. Don't worry about resistance: there isn't any. Sometimes, if the CPU is in good mood, enemies will send one or two troops at you. Specifically, at your TWENTY-SOMETHING army, with a 0% -ZERO- chances of victory (btw, that is not said by me. The game says it. On the battle screen.). What's the point?

    Luckily battles can be auto-resolved. But why am I playing if the computer plays itself?

    Even the politics have a good start. You're posed with great questions. Allowing gay marriages or not? Do you allow females in your army or not? Do you allow cigarettes or not? You're posed with great questions, that would make anyone think. But fear not, dear player, because this important questions are resolved with the stupidest system yet: a binary morality system!! BINARY! Either you're good or bad, no middle ground, no ethics, no nothing!

    But even if the politics system weren't so flawed, it would still be useless. Your counsellors decide by majority if you decide not to act. And, if you choose to act, you still have to abide to the majority, to not cause discontempt among the population. So why am I posed these problems if they resolve themselves? Am I even needed in this game?

    You have to get a bride in the game too, and that's a little interesting, but always dealed with a binary morality choice. So you don't have to choose.

    There's even the possibility to make a pact with a demon to make you and your armies stronger, but that's a lot of wasted effort for such an easy game.

    This game was a 5 for me, but after reading all I wrote, this becomes a 3. There are just too many dumb choices for a game that required more serousness by developers and players alike.
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  12. Dec 18, 2013
    3
    It's a basically ill-conceived, badly implemented game in a shiny package. Starting with the positive, the (spoof) high-fantasy setting, voice acting, and artwork are extremely good by any standards and manage to stand out in an extremely crowded market for this sort of stuff. In particular, the Undead as a civilian race along with skeletal council-representative are splendid. The political decision-making is "lite" but entertaining e.g. you can support or veto an Elfish motion to make all the war-machines out of renewable materials, with predictable and meaningful effects on production costs and public opinion (which influences the economy and also battles).

    After making a great start with things that fantasy strategy games get wrong more often than not, they somehow botched almost everything else in the game, starting with the game. It's a "lite" RTS bolted unceremoniously onto a "lite" strategy boardgame, and in the RTS you can basically cheat by destroying all enemy units with an infinitely fast, indestructable, regenerating dragon.

    The strategy boardgame has at least two flaws I'd consider fatal: firstly the units' relative importance here doesn't carry over into the RTS. A basic "Trooper" might take the full production resources of a country for a turn to produce at the strategic level, or about 10 seconds at the RTS level. However at the RTS level they are worthless cannon fodder, but at the strategic level when combats are auto-resolved they get a "fair" chance of destroying enemy units. The second fatal flaw is that the resources carry over between maps so once you complete one map, you can start the next with an unstoppable army.

    The problems with the RTS are more subtle and could be solved in different ways. Personally, I would:-
    remove the fixed population cap, nerf the perfectly accurate anti-aircraft defences, make the dragon constantly consume resources, slow down the units or make the maps bigger, make the units carried in from the strategic level irreplaceable and more powerful than the RTS-level equivalents, and replace the whole "control point" system with something less clunky.

    It's virtually impossible to lose, unit special abilities can't be used quickly enough, the computer can churn out units (by clicking!) so quickly and so soon that the dragon is needed to mop them up, (at which point you just win), but if you get hold of 2 out of 3 or 3 out of 4 recruitment "control points", the producing units impossibly quickly advantage goes from the computer to you pretty quickly.

    It's just a mess, and it feels like it resulted from a complete lack of thought followed by a policy of obstinately ignoring playtesters who would have picked up on these problems. The dragon could have been introduced into a bog-standard C&C clone and worked better without all the stuff they did to the RTS formula to try and balance the dragon.

    Three more problems: using the dragon makes strategic unit production and delivering commands temporarily impossible; the dragon cannot even be summoned in sea battles (due to there being no "recruitment centres"); and there is no option to auto-resolve with dragon.

    If you could auto-resolve with dragon so as to completely ditch the RTS segment, and had an option to dump unwanted gold, it would be possible to have a passable boardgame a bit like Risk without the strategic depth.
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  13. Oct 11, 2013
    3
    Dragon Commander is a very shallow game lacking any level of depth what so ever. The videos you see showing its features are literally all there is, do not look deeper than the surface, do not expect strategy of any kind other than an expert zerg rush from the AI. Nor should you expect an AI to run out of recruits as a human does, you may start with 3000, and it may start with 350, but it will build men endlessly and will always still have 350 recruits left, where as your 3000 will slowly drop until you run out of men.

    I have a pet hate of games that use cheating AIs, it is just an excuse not to make a properly AI. As a modder I often make AIs for games like this just to prove a cheating AI was not necessary. I could write one for this game but its just not good enough to bother with.

    If your an RPG fan, give this a miss, if your a strategy fan, give this a miss, if your zerg rush fan... your going to love this game. Sadly nobody else will.
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  14. Oct 15, 2013
    3
    Short game that's almost good. It's not very difficult and you can burn through it in half a day.

    It has a bit of an interesting twist on the RTS genre, but the lack of difficulty and the awful graphics really drag it down. It's worth trying out if you get it on sale or something, but I wouldn't rush to buy it.
  15. Oct 17, 2013
    3
    Politics and games don't mix. The game has a great concept, I was quite happy and excited to play this at first. Then I was presented with a number of politically charged decisions that I apparently "got wrong." I'm now 10+ hours into the game and on the final level and no matter what I do I cannot gain a positive income and it's impossible to play the game further. I'm a completionist and I almost never leave a game behind unfinished but Dragon Commander will have to be an exception for me since I was too busy trying to create armies, wage war, command battles from the back of a dragon, etc. when I instead should have been trying to predict the minds of the developers and decide how best to agree with their own political views. Expand
  16. Feb 2, 2014
    1
    Flat out horrible! Another case of lets make a game by pretty artwork and flash then hey lets add some game play to it. There is little sense of direction from the start. And then concept of "gradient" apparently doesn't exist anywhere in the designer(s) mind. If you get so far as to actually play on the map before uninstalling from the confusion, the AI is apparently some sort of flock/swarm thing that feel more like your fighting a flock of "T-1000" robots rather then any kind of thing natural or humanoid.

    What happened to game design? What happened to awareness?
    What happened to keeping the players perspective in mind?

    Hey designers/developers when you think of some cool concept (or just a name?) for a game please think it through first.
    Yes the public loves flashy graphics and all pretty things, but please just hash the game out first with even stick figure graphics, and beeps and bops for sounds, etc. Make sure you got some solid working concept in game play, fun AI, etc.
    Take this little test bed and see if you can make something fun and working first.
    And THEN add the graphics, etc., that should be more the "icing on the cake". Else there is no substance and it's not something your players will want to play.
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  17. Apr 13, 2014
    1
    This game a perfect example of how Kickstarter and Early Access is letting video game developer's get away with stooping to increasingly depressing lows.

    "Dragon Commander" is an unfinished game that came out of Early Access status not because it was ready, but because Larian had another title that finished its Kickstarter funding so they wanted to get to work on that (Original Sin).
    What we're left with is an unfinished game with a lot of potential (Dragon Commander) that asks $40 when it's left in a late-alpha state, and another game (Original Sin) that people are currently giving the developer's money to work on when it's in the exact same condition, and when Larian has been allowed to get away with cashing in on one unfinished product, what's to prevent them from doing it again? Especially when there are players that seem all too content to give developers money to work part-time hours on games with no incentive to bring them to true gold status because hey, they're already making bank off unfinished work!

    Gets a 1/10 anyway because the soundtrack is amazing.
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Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 37
  2. Negative: 1 out of 37
  1. Sep 25, 2013
    80
    Inventive, funny and a whole lot of fun. An excellent way to break up the over-serious grind of most strategy titles. [Oct 2013, p.82]
  2. 100
    Complicated, difficult, different. A true strategy game for the gamers with classical tastes, who have time and will. It's also a pleasant blast from the past, when a genre template was not an option. [Issue#233]
  3. Sep 5, 2013
    70
    A weird but interesting hybrid that mixes RTS, RPG, board game and trading card game mechanics in one delightful experience. Unfortunately, even if the mix works, the singular gameplay components aren’t deep enough and the game itself is mined by many minor issues.