Elemental: Fallen Enchantress PC

User Score
7.3

Mixed or average reviews- based on 170 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 30 out of 170

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  1. Oct 28, 2012
    5
    I really want to like this game. Fall From Heaven II, the Civilization IV game mod where FE developer Kael first made a name for himself, remains one of my favorite video games. Everything which should make this a great game is present- an epic story, customizeable units, diverse fantasy words, dozens of enemy types, lairs, exploration, quests- and all in a 4X game. Unfortunately, FEI really want to like this game. Fall From Heaven II, the Civilization IV game mod where FE developer Kael first made a name for himself, remains one of my favorite video games. Everything which should make this a great game is present- an epic story, customizeable units, diverse fantasy words, dozens of enemy types, lairs, exploration, quests- and all in a 4X game. Unfortunately, FE manages to be less than the sum of its parts; * Although every hero, enemy creature, unit and civilization has paragraphs of background, the writing is often simply execrable. It's almost impossible to parse any meaning from under the piles of randomly-generated fantasy names and poorly-constructed sentences. Immersion is important for fantasy games, even when the "plot" is developed through the player's own actions, but in FE it quickly becomes impossible to dodge the reality that you're just grinding down some AI, and the game becomes much less interesting for it. * Game balance is badly off. You can easily munchkin yourself into an impossible lead using the character creation system (combining the "recruit any hero" civ ability with the "recruit heroes for free" leader trait makes the game a farce). Even if you just stick with one of the paltry eight default leaders, it quickly becomes apparent that it makes much more sense to spend 40 gold shaving several turns off a unit's completion via cash-rushing than using the same sum to purchase a +1 defense helmet for a single unit. Missile units have unlimited range in tactical combat mode, where AI armies are principally composed of slow-moving melee grunts. * The AI itself seems barely capable of playing the game, even on the higher difficulty levels. The AI is extremely passive and rarely ever attacks in force. Curiously the AI is also laughably overconfident, and will often refuse to make peace even when relieved of all but one of their cities. * The 4X side of the game is extremely limited. There are very few tiles where you can settle new cities, with little rhyme or reason for why one location is suitable for colonization while the verdant green field nearby is not. Settling a city will remove all other potential city sites within a wide radius for reasons which are never made clear. Cities themselves are essentially identical, with the main difference being how many enchantments each can support. * While the cities themselves are dramatically oversimplified, with no tile management and little impetus to specialize, cities are also unnecessarily complex and difficult to manage. City growth is predicated on two separate food mechanics, and there are multiple, differently-named types of production, which are then combined into a generic "production" total. Cities have far too many buildings they can add, many of which are necessary if you want to complete mid and late-game units within reasonable timeframes without having to purchase. * FE's functions are poorly-documented and its menus are often confusing. How many units does "40 Metal" get me? I have no idea. It's probably mentioned, but I couldn't tell you where. When I'm trading " 5 Magic tech" for "4 Warrior tech" in diplomacy, what does that really represent? Can I lose technological progress that way? Does the number refer to research points, and if so are they only for techs the other person lacks which you have? It isn't immediately apparent what the repercussions are for trading away most of the items available in diplomacy. * FE is years behind other titles in the 4X genre in some very basic areas. Cities with nothing in their build queues promptly go idle, with only a small icon in the corner of the screen to alert you that nothing is happening. Roads are produced automatically without player input; if you want to build your own to speed units to the front lines, you're out of luck. Even loading saves necessitates first exiting to the main menu. It should also be noted that the unit and leader graphics are almost shockingly dated, even by 4X standards. I personally didn't mind much, but it is disappointing for a 40 dollar game. * There are a few technical issues and other bugs which I had hoped would have been resolved during this title's very long development cycle. CTD occur every few hours. Certain quest rewards fail to appear. Memory leak occurs steadily while playing for extended periods, even on a powerful computer. On occasion the save loading screen disappears. Despite the far too many words I have devoted above to attacking the game, FE isn't *bad* by any means. It's fun to play for a while, and the opening 60 turns or so are fantastic, when the game world is full of places to explore, loot to grab & things to fight. Play much longer however and the game becomes a slog of traveling through open wastelands to gradually pummel unthinking AI to death with a few superhuman armies. Expand
  2. Oct 24, 2012
    6
    Unfortunately FE is a medicore game for me. Much better than War of Magic, the GUI is far more intuitive and game feels a lot more polished overall than its predecessor, but still it does not trigger the just-one-more-turn effect that makes some of the games out there to be the titles to remember. This game proves like no others that a great game is more than just a sum of it parts -Unfortunately FE is a medicore game for me. Much better than War of Magic, the GUI is far more intuitive and game feels a lot more polished overall than its predecessor, but still it does not trigger the just-one-more-turn effect that makes some of the games out there to be the titles to remember. This game proves like no others that a great game is more than just a sum of it parts - because FE has all parts necessary to be great, but it is not. The gameplay is simply kind of bland, generic, and the balancing were too often done in the worst way possible - simply by cutting corners. For instance - city spam that was a problem in War of Magic was dealt with by allowing to settle only on few titles on the map, race balance was achieved simply by making all races almost the same - they are just retextured humans that feel almost the same while played etc. The biggest flaw in my opinion is just that - the lack of diversity between playable races that takes the fantasy gaming charm away. Diversity of creatures and fantastic races has always been the core of fantasy TBS-games and creates the feeling of uniqueness, which is simply missing in FE. I guess the development had focused on technical issues and has missed the more elusive and subtle aspects of a game designing. Some other issues I got with the game: the city development part is poor - at the beginning there is just too much to build, after a while the cities stay idle, unless they train troops. Too much things depends on sheer luck - in many cases a starting location or a quest reward decides about being or not to being of your or AI's kingdom/empire. Itemization is poorly implemented - I kept finding items with level requirement of 7 or 10 with lvl 1-3 champions. There suppose to be an abundance of spells but it is hard to get a feeling of that, because separate Spell books have like 20 spell in it or less. And again - it is not up to you what kind of magic you specialize, but up to the map generator, that decides what shards will be in your kingdom/empire. On top of that the game has some technical difficulties - the fps drops significantly while the game progresses. I suspect it is because every unit can use it's own equipment so the game has to render them all separately, but still it will be an unpleasant surprise for a powerhouse-PC owners. Expand
  3. Oct 26, 2012
    6
    Something went wrong with development of the game - it feels like it was made by people that normally program databases and utility software and not games. Everything is vapid in this game - spells, units, magic items, city development. All is simply boring, but then I think it is a matter of personal taste - my roommate can't stop playing this and it looks that the game offers more later on.
  4. Aug 31, 2013
    6
    Just for once I'd like it if a developer would play test their game before releasing it. And whilst this might not be an entirely fair comment it certainly applies to Fallen Enchantress.

    Not counting game breaking bugs; the UI is clunky and obtuse; it also doesn't take your screen resolution into account so you'll be scrolling tiny text windows with 90% of the screen unused. You're
    Just for once I'd like it if a developer would play test their game before releasing it. And whilst this might not be an entirely fair comment it certainly applies to Fallen Enchantress.

    Not counting game breaking bugs; the UI is clunky and obtuse; it also doesn't take your screen resolution into account so you'll be scrolling tiny text windows with 90% of the screen unused. You're either over-powered or under-powered there is no tension in the battles or even the maps really. You'll win or lose and know the outcome long before it happens. And the generic pipe music becomes really, really grating.

    I've had quest objects disappear, endless units swarm the map and been unable to see the main quest because it's hidden under some optional quest. It's all quite frustrating. Fallen Enchantress may actually be more broken than the venerable Master of Magic and it lacks any of the original's charm.

    It's not all negative but the problem is there are not outstanding positives. Certainly if you enjoy turn based fantasy games then give this a whirl but keep your expectations low.
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  5. Dec 7, 2012
    7
    If you like turn-based/4X games, you should give Fallen Enchantress a try, because it has a lot of promising pieces to it, but don't expect a great game, or you'll be disappointed. And, I recommend waiting till you can get it on sale. If you really like it after you buy it, you can give Stardock more money by buying the map packs. That said, great 4X games come along once in a long whileIf you like turn-based/4X games, you should give Fallen Enchantress a try, because it has a lot of promising pieces to it, but don't expect a great game, or you'll be disappointed. And, I recommend waiting till you can get it on sale. If you really like it after you buy it, you can give Stardock more money by buying the map packs. That said, great 4X games come along once in a long while (Total War: Shogun 2 is an excellent example, while in my opinion, Civilization V is not). Unfortunately, Fallen Enchantress is not one of them. Stardock does some fun things with this recent addition to the 4X/turn-based strategy/RPG genre (such as being set in a fantasy world with armies of wandering monsters and challenging quest areas), but it lacks in enough fundamental areas that I just wasn't excited while playing it. **COMPOSITE SCORE: 6.875/10**

    **ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: 7/10**

    Fallen Enchantress has enough good pieces to interest a player in spending a couple hundred hours if you give it a chance. It has the standard explore, expand, exploit, and exterminate aspects of games like the Total War series and the Civilization series, but it actually allows you to join in combat between armies which Civ does not (Total War does). Being challenged by behemoth monsters early in the game if you expand too much is a fun twist as well. However, there are a number of weak aspects to the game too. Winning diplomatically seems far too easy to me. Unit movement is very short: two spaces without roads until you get horses... and that will take a long time for a full army. Army sizes feel miniscule at the beginning, and champions always feel underpowered.

    **GRAPHICS: 6/10**

    I will admit that I am probably spoiled by Shogun 2's setup, attention to detail, variety in armies, and graphics, so when I loaded up my first game in Fallen Enchantress, I was immediately disappointed by what I considered to be PS2-era character models and textures. The reason for this is that Stardock used the very same model for both the campaign map as well as close-up shots of characters and army units. Many other games will use models with varying numbers of polygons depending on how far out the "camera" is from the model, but they don't here, so we're stuck with the low resolution models and textures. Bleh. The strategic map was similar in detail to Civ V's, and the combat maps were about the same as well. Compared to Shogun 2's combat maps, Fallen Enchantress's lacked a lot of detail and options. I do like the dragon models though.

    **SOUND: 9/10**

    I had no problems with Fallen Enchantress's sound. What voice acting there was was quite reasonable, and the music was very good.

    **DESIGN AND GAMEPLAY: 6/10**

    I've already mentioned the standard 4X-setup. That works pretty well as long as you disable some options (such as allowing the game to go to the next turn without you telling it too... lost a lot of building/research turns till I found that option). And again, the wandering monsters and quest areas added a level of challenge I hadn't seen in other 4X/Turn-based strategy games (especially if you turn up the monster frequency... whew). I noticed an AI scripting problem though: if you change the number of opponents you have to below the recommended number for that map size, the AIs will often do nothing until you encounter them. That could be 30 turns... or 200 turns. Encountering an opponent when they have 1 city and you have 9 makes it kind of boring. Also, I feel like there's a huge flaw in the army creation system: when you start out, you can make army units with three men in them. By the end game, you can create army units with seven men in them. But, you can't convert a unit you made at the beginning, leveled up, and outfitted with new gear into a a 7-man unit. They're always stuck at the size you created them at. It makes no sense to me and is frustrating to deal with while playing. (Reason being, your early armies max out at 27 men. Late game armies max out at 63 men. So, why can't I just pay more resources to upgrade to 7 men????) Lastly, although there are a lot of combat spells available, I never used any, because frankly, an army with one champion buffing eight units of top-tier archers destroys anything, so why bother with wimpy spells?

    **GAME LENGTH: 8/10**

    Much to my surprise, Fallen Enchantress did have an actual campaign (they call it a scenario). I had originally thought it was just a Civ V style of game with only the conquest maps. The scenario's story is pretty good. Loss, tragedy, redemption, more tragedy... all good stuff. Unfortunately, it's only about six hours long. But, the regular maps can take a very, very, very long time. So, plenty of game length all around.
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  6. May 23, 2013
    6
    This game sadly fails in the simplest but most important way. IT ISN"T FUN. Fallen Enchantress looks like a good try at doing a Civilization game better than CIV. There are characters and wargear and levelling and spells, that all promise to make a game with the best aspects of Civ and HOMM. Sadly Stardock don't quite pull it off. The gameplay finally is over-determined by luck and aThis game sadly fails in the simplest but most important way. IT ISN"T FUN. Fallen Enchantress looks like a good try at doing a Civilization game better than CIV. There are characters and wargear and levelling and spells, that all promise to make a game with the best aspects of Civ and HOMM. Sadly Stardock don't quite pull it off. The gameplay finally is over-determined by luck and a successful and very aggressive opening. Unless you get a really optimum start and a fortuitous map you will always lose later in the game. The races are bland. The challenge of nuetral enemies excessive. The engine is poorly optimised and degenerates into lag and over-use of the CPU pretty soon. Tactical battles suffer from bad graphics and poor balancing (Rend is way Over-powered). If you play on easy it's too easy and boring, but if you play on hard it's too hard and joyless. Before you lose in 'the end' you will waste many turns restarting after a single random encounter wipes out your best army or city and makes the game unviable. This could be the basis of a great game. All the ideas are there. However more work is needed in optimiziation of the engine, and fine-tuning the details. Expand
  7. Nov 14, 2012
    7
    I'll start by saying I like Fallen Enchantress. There is a lot of good in this game for the fantasy 4x crowd. What it lacks is focus, polish, and a compelling setting. It does try to do a lot of things. Is it a hero based RPG with city building attached? Is it a fantasy Civ game? Something else? There is a lot of seasoning in the pot. Some aspects are well fleshed out, and some areI'll start by saying I like Fallen Enchantress. There is a lot of good in this game for the fantasy 4x crowd. What it lacks is focus, polish, and a compelling setting. It does try to do a lot of things. Is it a hero based RPG with city building attached? Is it a fantasy Civ game? Something else? There is a lot of seasoning in the pot. Some aspects are well fleshed out, and some are not. I expect Stardock will work on the polish, but the bland races are likely to endure. I would have preferred stereotypical races. What we have are blue people fighting gray people in a brown world.

    That said, if you can get past some of the design decisions and you're a fan of the genre, there is no better game to play and no better company to support.
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  8. Oct 29, 2012
    7
    i really wanted to love this game. I deeply appreciate gesture from Stardock for giving this game for free to people who bought original Elemental: War of Magic. Yet no amount of good will will make it better. I put countless hours in Master of Magic back in the day replaying with different magic combinations and this game could not hold my attention for more then 6 hours. Mostly samei really wanted to love this game. I deeply appreciate gesture from Stardock for giving this game for free to people who bought original Elemental: War of Magic. Yet no amount of good will will make it better. I put countless hours in Master of Magic back in the day replaying with different magic combinations and this game could not hold my attention for more then 6 hours. Mostly same complaints that others have in their reviews. All races are the same, magics are primitive, something just does not click. I am giving it 7 ant being very generous just because i like Stardock in general. I really hope they will bring better stuff to the table next time. Expand
  9. Oct 27, 2012
    7
    There is a lot of potential in this game but also a lot of flaws.The game could offer so much depth in both strategy and RPG elements but most of the times this is limited by some other problem arising. The AI seems too messy even at high level of difficulty, making some weird choice in war that penalize it too much making sometimes the game trivial for the player, also it cant use veryThere is a lot of potential in this game but also a lot of flaws.The game could offer so much depth in both strategy and RPG elements but most of the times this is limited by some other problem arising. The AI seems too messy even at high level of difficulty, making some weird choice in war that penalize it too much making sometimes the game trivial for the player, also it cant use very well the champions and the magic making it too weak as opponent in a fair situation (but this is balanced by often having more resources etc).Anyway building your empire and growing your sovereign is a very fun aspect of the game, finding items, doing quests, this aspect is quite enjoyable but proceeding in the game often you find weird settings like monsters completely weak giving over the top weapons as reward and viceversa.Even city building is quite innovative, city leveling up and specializing is a great idea but even here there are sometimes options just to good or too bad to offer a real choice.Basically the game really needs a lot of more polish to be a great game, its nearly there but there is work to do in the AI and balance of the game. Expand
  10. Mar 5, 2013
    6
    Didn't really get into this game, and kind of regret buying it now. It has potential, but it really fails in graphics and the combat system feels too much like a mediocre indie game. I'll give it another shot next week but so far I'm a bit disappointed.
  11. Oct 23, 2012
    7
    A great game that is basically a mix between heroes of might and magic and galactic civ. It takes the gameplay style of homm and the customization of galciv and marries them in a really rewarding game. The technology tree is the weakest link of the game, but it is still quite nice. If you are a fan of turn based strategy you should definitely pick it up.
  12. Nov 12, 2012
    7
    It's much much better than the Elemental War of Magic. Kael did fantastic job to make this game an (almost) perfect 4x fantasy game.

    Elemental : FE = Master of Magic 2012. Thanks Kael !!!
  13. Jan 26, 2013
    5
    I took part in the Beta for this game. I wanted very badly to like it, but too many of the "key mechanics" such as Character Development and the Magic System were bland and uninspired. It's not a bad game, per se, but many of the aspects upon which it hangs its hat feel as though they were developed in a vacuum and glued together. It doesn't really all "work" as a unit.
  14. Mar 7, 2013
    7
    This game intended to "fix" what they did wrong in the original Elemental: War of Magic, but in my opinion turns out to be a little less fun. Not saying that it isn't a fun game in its own right, but they removed my favorite 'elements' of the old game and dumbed it down a little but forgot to do anything to add to the overall 'fun'.
  15. Dec 1, 2012
    5
    Decent, but needlessly complex game. What I miss most is "the" fun element, something this would all be "about". You can level up heroes, but they are weak and later on largely pointless. You can build units, but combat with them is horribly simple and no fun. You can cast spells but they are hardly effective. You can build cities, but they do not feel unique nor special, and everythingDecent, but needlessly complex game. What I miss most is "the" fun element, something this would all be "about". You can level up heroes, but they are weak and later on largely pointless. You can build units, but combat with them is horribly simple and no fun. You can cast spells but they are hardly effective. You can build cities, but they do not feel unique nor special, and everything takes forever. The interface fortunately allows you to control all the aspects comfortably, and this alone is a tremendous achievement. However, the game looks very under-par and the art is average at best, downright ugly at worst. It puzzles me why a game with so much work thrown into it settled for such horrible looks. I would ultimately advise against buying it, unless you really are desperate to try it. Even so, wait for a sale. Expand
  16. Dec 26, 2012
    6
    Fallen Enchantress does a lot of things right, but somehow there's something lacking from it that denies the game the "just one more turn!" feeling that describes truly great games.

    There are few games in this genre, and the obvious comparison is the now-dated Master of Magic. In both games, you play a wizard who rules a civilization, and you try to expand your civilization and
    Fallen Enchantress does a lot of things right, but somehow there's something lacking from it that denies the game the "just one more turn!" feeling that describes truly great games.

    There are few games in this genre, and the obvious comparison is the now-dated Master of Magic. In both games, you play a wizard who rules a civilization, and you try to expand your civilization and simultaneously gain magical power, with the ultimate goal of conquering the world. Fallen Enchantress does all this well - there are interesting civilizations and spells, designable units, magic items, heroes, and enemy civilizations. However, the game seems soulless - there is no plot to it, and which character or civilization you play only matters in that it affects the advantages you have. The game just doesn't seem to be that engaging, and that keeps it from being the kind of game you want to replay time and time again. As mentioned, however, there are few games in this genre, and it has enough options to make sure players get different experiences. It is worth picking up on sale, with the hope that in the future it might be improved.
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  17. Nov 10, 2013
    5
    A game that I really want to enjoy but can't due to all its flaws. I feel the game is a brilliant idea that could work really, really well if done right. Unfortunately, this isn't the case. It has a feeling of being incomplete and rushed.

    The turn-base system does not work at all. It feels like something should be added to the game to make it feel like its got more of a purpose. The
    A game that I really want to enjoy but can't due to all its flaws. I feel the game is a brilliant idea that could work really, really well if done right. Unfortunately, this isn't the case. It has a feeling of being incomplete and rushed.

    The turn-base system does not work at all. It feels like something should be added to the game to make it feel like its got more of a purpose. The game is very confusing where things will happen that will trigger me to just want to never play the game again and the short, brief tutorial didn't really help. I have played many other games by Stardock and I know the potential they carry and that potential is only displayed in about the first hour of gameplay.
    The combat is really unengaging and confusing and I ended up skipping through it every time.

    On a higher note, however, is the exploring. Despite the mediocre graphics, I felt the game had a very good atmosphere, much like other Stardock games. I enjoyed doing exploring if I ignored the annoying turn-base system. Finding different enemies, allies and places to build was very satisfying.

    Another aspect of the game I enjoyed was the upgrades. Although they weren't great, I felt a need to improve my town, champions and improving on the town with farms and other locations.

    Overall, the games not worth the money. It has potential and great ideas but is not fun in general.
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Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Feb 4, 2013
    85
    Fixes most of Elemental’s technical and design problems, making it an addictively complex and rewarding strategy game.
  2. Dec 17, 2012
    89
    A collection of average mechanics combine to make a big, complicated, pretty good game. It's no "Master of Magic", but there is real potential here.
  3. Pelit (Finland)
    Dec 12, 2012
    78
    Fallen Enchantress improves on the first Elemental game by leaps and bounds, but still fails to enchant. Heroes and armies are fun to play with, but the mediocre empire building lacks that something which really would hook you in. [Dec 2012]