User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 72 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 72
  2. Negative: 31 out of 72

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  1. Aug 24, 2010
    Well alright, it seems I have the first review status, and I will say that it feels great. But you want to know about this game, and I shall oblige. First, let me say that I played Master of Magic back in the days of Microprose, and this game is not Master of Magic. There are hints of Age of Wonders, smatterings of Civilization 4, a bit of Galactic Civilizations, among others. The list of things that this game does right is too long, so let me just say this: this game is fun, if you are into the genre. I played a bit of the campaign mode to learn how to play, and I had picked up the concepts and whatnot within the first 100 turns. I then started a 'sandbox' style game, played long enough to lose a moderate force to a goody hut and tried to load an autosave and the game crashed. So now I am writing a review. The GUI needs patching in this game, several times I noticed stuff from behind the book window thing superimposed with it, nothing major. It SEEMS to me that the game WILL need patching, and if you happened to pirate it, you will not be getting the patch for quite some time, since it is a Stardock game ( you have to patch it with their steamoid Impulse software thingy.) I recommend this game highly, if you like turn-based strategy games like Civilization 4 or Age of Wonders, this game is for you. Expand
  2. Aug 25, 2010
    A promising and innovative game that should be popular for years to come. Outstanding RPG and fantasy game. Great graphics! Great story! I see longevity here. The Ver 1.0 game will undoubtedly have bug fixes and patches in the near future, but with Stardock behind the game, no worries here. Killer game play--well worth the wait!
  3. Aug 25, 2010
    I have been a long-time fan of Stardock games, and have been anticipating this one for quite some time. It has exceeded my expectations, and I can't say how many hours I have put into playing it since the weekend. The game has been very stable for me, and I have not experienced any crashes or major issues. I do recommend anyone who is a fan of this genre to immediately grab this.
  4. Aug 26, 2010
    I've been with Elemental since the beginning, all the way back a year ago in Beta 1A. I've watched it go from absolutely, unbearable to play to the great game it is now. Does it need some help? Yes, there are still some bugs, balance issues, UI problems and the lack of a REAL tutorial hurts, but the game underneath all of that is really, really solid, deep and a blast to play.

    I have
    faith in Elemental and its ability to find itself to become a masterpiece. It's a little too rough around the edges and the UI is begging for more informaiton, so I can't give this game a 10 just yet, but I HONESTLY believe that this game will be a 10 one day. There is no doubt in my mind. Its greatness shines through so often and it just begs to be let out and consume the rest of the game. Truth is, Brad Wardell (even if I vehemently disagree with his politics) is a genuine man and seems to really be in touch with the average gamer (probably because he IS a gamer). With him at the helm and the rest of the fantastic Stardock team, this game can't possibly fail in the long term. Galactic Civilizations 2 is testament to that. The team at Stardock have one of the most passionate work ethics I've ever seen and it's only a matter of time before this game is being lauded as the one of the best examples of the turn-based strategy genre. Maybe in PC gaming, honestly. Therein lies the problem, though. It just needed more time. Maybe not 6 months, but I think at least another 2 or 3. With another 2 or 3 months of development time, we wouldn't have needed a "Day 0 Patch" to come save the day from the WRETCHED state that the gold code was in. That gold code should have been "Day 0" code + and the actual "Day 0" code should have been extra polish only meant to enhance the should not have been the only code that most people were capable of playing. Had I bought this game off the shelf and had no access to Stardock's Impulse, this review would have been very, very different (think 5 or 6). Anyway, to those who want to know whether or not to buy this game, I ask you one question: do you like Stardock or their previous titles? If so, buy it. It's a great game as it stands today and I can simply guarantee that it will be phenomenal some day soon. I've had a LOT of fun with the present build and I would buy it again, honestly. It fills the need for a modern-day Master of Magic and then some. Any self-loving turn-based strategy gamer with fond memories of MOM or someone just looking for something new and different could do no better than Elemental and supporting the team behind it, Stardock and Brad Wardell, is one of the best things you can do to support PC gaming as a whole. Expand
  5. Aug 27, 2010
    I have played the game since early beta and don't understand the negative reviews. This game is FUN! Sure, it has a few bugs, but I have faith that Stardock will fix them considering they keep putting up patches as bugs are reported on their forums. I have a feeling that people just don't "get" the game. It's fun and worth the money, especially if you get the collectors edition that has a cloth map (hello geek love) and a metal dragon. Expand
  6. Aug 28, 2010
    This is a *fantastic* game. Think Civ4, but with a light rpg attached. Your main character can run around the world map doing quests, gaining levels, allies and gear. If you want, the game has multiple victory conditions built in so you can win by completing a difficult quest chain without ever having built a unit in one of your cities. Or you can go the traditional route and build a mighty army for your hero to lead (or take the diplomatic route, like anyone ever does that!). Not enough? Okay how about winning by extending your magical knowledge so far that you learn to control the very spell the gods themselves used to create the world?

    There are also incredibly detailed modding tools included with the game, so you can look forward to a whole barrage of excellent user generated content in the future, and the developers have promised the first free dlc within 60 days of launch.

    Okay, the bad bit; it's a bit buggy at the moment. My high score is based on Stardock's excellent pedigree and the assumption that they'll patch the bugs out of existence fairly rapidly. But basically, this game is Made Of Awesome. Ignore the poor reviews from people who have a thirty second attention span. If you enjoy strategy games, or rpgs, this game is a very worthy purchase. I'm not a big strategy gamer but was lured in by the rpg elements, and I have not been disappointed. Get it while it's still hip so that when everyone jumps on the bandwagon you can say you got it while it was "still indy" :P
  7. Aug 31, 2010
    There are, with the current patches, still a few bugs. However, considering Stardock's track record and the patches so far I'm sure these will be resolved son. The game itself is fantastic, masterfully combining RPG elements with classic 4X game-play. While there is room for improvement, I am sure that the full potential will be realised, going on what Stardock have outlined as content for patches, hence the high score. If you enjoyed Galactic Civilizations, then you will enjoy this. Expand
  8. Feb 14, 2011
    Elemental War of Magic might seem like a promising game but beware! It is packed full of bugs, UI issues, gameplay issues, balance issues and stupidity. DO NOT BUY IT!

    Each patch makes things WORSE which is another reason I suggest you stay far away from this Stardock tragedy. Memory usage went UP (1.4 gigs) as did crash frequency (pretty damn often) when they patched to 1.1.

    They tried
    to increase complexity by simply doubting various resources and splitting benefits into two tech trees. This makes the game slow and cumbersome and removes any advantage of research.

    Gameplay mechanics like trade do nothing and several times upgrades did not do what they said and in fact seemed to do nothing at all. It's pretty hard to play a game when nothing does what it says.

    Also vision is broken (you can't see things on the map). Movement is broken (you can't move according to your movement rate). Monsters are broken (looking at a stack gives you incorrect information about it's contents. Questing is broken (there are two types of quests [which makes no sense] and in two games I was unable to get a to a level where I could access any of the available quests. Units are broken in several ways.

    Saving is also broken as you can't save keystroke/game progressions but only a fixed state. Conclusion: play Civ 5/4/2 or Alpha Centauri if you want a great 4x game. Play Galactic Civilizations 1 if you don't like Civilization and STAY AWAY FROM THIS PIECE OF CRAP.

Mixed or average reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 19
  2. Negative: 7 out of 19
  1. 60
    Out of respect for Stardock, I will stop here, because it's hard for me to imagine how a decent developer has allowed such a product to be released in this state, with little connection to the term of entertainment.
  2. Dec 23, 2010
    The subtlety of these exchanges suggests that a strategy game of some greatness exists beneath the cumbersome framework, and we trust Stardock, a developer of proven diligence and passion, to continue refining it. [Nov 2010, p.93]
  3. Quotation forthcoming.