Mixed or average reviews - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 24
  2. Negative: 1 out of 24
  1. SpellForce enlisted my involvement and playing dedication with the incredible opening cinematic, the brilliant tutorial and, ultimately, the absolutely captivating game adventure itself.
  2. Amazing graphics, and it expands on everything that previous RTS and RPG games have created.
  3. Its success at blending all of its parts together into a smoothly flowing, finely-crafted whole are more than just the final word in the development of the game; it’s a testament to the thought that went into blending the best features of two of the most complex genres in gaming, and creating an interface that’s easily accessible and suitably detailed.
  4. A title that deserves credit for breaking the cookie-cutter mold that RTS games have fallen into. Even maps with simple goals can turn into endeavors that last for hours, if you take time to smell the roses and just enjoy playing with powerful, fully customizable avatar with the ability to raise a monstrous force.
  5. If you enjoy third person action titles or RTS games, and enjoy some really good battles in between building and resource gathering all wrapped around a good vs. evil story which is interesting and contains some decent plot twists, you will definitely want to check out Spellforce.
  6. The avatar system is a beefier system than what you'll find in any other RTS game on the market and offers for a little higher degree of flexibility and even strategy, outfitting your avatars with various weapons and spells in order to complement the other normal units of your attacking force.
  7. 82
    There haven't been a lot of games that manage to combine large scale strategy and role-playing together and be successful. Phenomic has made a damn good stab at it with this one though.
  8. Graphically stunning, infused with a rich storyline, and so full of subtle touches your head will spin trying to keep track of them all.
  9. 80
    The music and visuals are excellent. And you know what? So is the core play of the game. There's a lot of innovation here in SpellForce. Although parts of it are rough around the edges, there's too much good gameplay here to pass up.
  10. It is neither the best RTS nor the best RPG out there. However, SpellForce offers enough of a quality experience in both genres, packaged in a pretty environment that you could spend dozens of hours exploring as a Warrior of the Rune.
  11. An impressive fantasy setting, intriguing plot, and reasonably lengthy missions make for a solid experience. The thing is though, those who don't prefer a hefty dose of classic epic fantasy storytelling should probably stay away.
  12. It may have a familiar-seeming premise, and it may have a few noticeable shortcomings, but SpellForce's unique combination of role-playing and strategy elements makes it worth a look for fans of either kind of game.
  13. The RTS portion of the title, which is mostly very well-done, suffers from one problem that almost utterly kills my enjoyment of it: Unit AI is freakin' terrible. [Mar 2004, p.113]
  14. What makes this game a winner for me is the fact that it combines two of my favourite genres brilliantly and manages to achieve the best of both.
  15. It's a quality game that can become addictive very quickly, and only loses a few points on replayability, linearity, camera controls and voice acting.
  16. The AI of the game is its most irritating aspect. The computer’s strategy always involves sending small sallies of units to die on your defenses every couple of minutes until you have built up a large enough force to attack and overwhelm them.
  17. Gets an "A" for design, and a "C-" for execution. Let's hope major patches can revise this game to greatness. [Apr 2004, p.81]
  18. It's a combination of role playing and real time strategy that goes together like chocolate and peanut butter. In other words, it not only works, but it tastes great too.
  19. But as a hybrid of the two genres, SpellForce has a funky sort of synergy that elevates it above the sum of its ho-hum parts. [May 2004, p.58]
  20. 60
    No game has this sort of RPG/RTS mix, and I got just as much a kick out of getting a new spell or a new suit of armor as I did in guiding my hordes into battle.
  21. If you can put up with acting which is more wooden than Pinocchio with a semi, and want a simple but entertaining strategy game to help pass the long winter nights, then SpellForce may be your vial of poison.
  22. In the played-out field of fantasy real-time-strategy games, SpellForce rises above the muck with ambition, a few original gameplay touches, and some truly spectacular graphics. [May 2004, p.80]
  23. If you were piecing together the ultimate stereotypical PC game, our guess is that the end result would look a lot like Spellforce. [Christmas 2003, p.127]
  24. 45
    A disappointing compilation of ambition without practical delivery. It's a game broken into several fundamental components that never work on their own and never contribute to a whole that can be appreciated.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 35 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 8
  2. Negative: 1 out of 8
  1. Jan 3, 2014
    its one of the best games i had ever played.this game is the perfect example for the time where the games were made with love.its 2014 now but this game is so good that you can buy it even now Full Review »
  2. Jun 27, 2012
    Very few games have such great immersion as this game, from my personal opinion I can only name the original farcry and deus ex, half life 2 but for an rts and rpg fan this one is the best. It is the type of game that allow you to wholly immerse yourself into the gameplay and storyline in a way that isolates you from the real world and becomes the only reality the matter for the duration of the game. I had the fortune of having one week holiday when started the campaign, and for four days straight I played this game, stopping only to make dinner and breakfast. This game also allows you to play while you sleep, since you gain experience for every kill on the map you can create a solid defence before going to sleep and then wake up 2-3 levels higher.

    To summarize the reason I give it 8 instead of 10 I will give my opinions on these points about the game.

    The music is very good, excellent ambitient music with good combat music. The graphics are awesome for its time, though the characters looks retarded when their talking and flapping their arms while wielding a huge warhammer/swords, it is the terrain and sky graphic that gives excellent immersion. The sound is very mediocre and you will come to hate the battle notification sound that screams at you because a goblin is walking past your city. The combat sounds are decent but few so they do get tedious. The combat is very good for a warrior, ranger and any class that does not focus wholly on spellcasting. For a pure wizard though you will find your character utterly useless in this game. Clumsy spell targetting system and lack of mana will find you only using your good spells against special monsters. The storyline is very good thanks to the dialogue and voice acting (though some are questionable) and it will keep you interested in progressing nonestop, though I will be honest and say I only understood about 80% of what was going on and why things were the way they were, you hear allot of references to the circle mages but not much substance. The cool and original thing is that you go from controlling all the races, both evil and good while if you gather your Human army and Orc army at the same place they will start attacking each other. The place this game shines is character progression and gear, you get to spend ability points to increase your stats which is something I love and that all modern day rpg lack, you get to drool at epic items and build your character for wielding them. If you do it correctly you will go from low class warrior to an unstoppable champion, though you will never be overpowered. Even though the combat system is clumsy, the actuall battles is beautifull to watch thanks to aggressive AI, watching hundreds of warriors and mighty monsters battle on a grand scale compared to many other RTS games, and for a RPG style game it has the biggest battles I have ever seen. The maps are revisitable and often have new quests which is great for longevity and gives you a non linear approach to a linear storyline, this is one of my favorite aspects of this game. The sad thing is the multiplayer is horrible, as this has the potential to be the best coop game in rts/rpg history if you could do the campaign with friends or have friends control the enemy camp. Another boring aspect is you will be running, and running and searching and talking with many people in the cities you have absolutely no need for which is the most tedious thing in this game, too many interactable npc's that dont give anything.

    So the game is not perfect, but damn its enjoyable and I hope to see future developers learn from this game when creating a more dynamic RTS/RPG crossover. Thanks Jowood.
    Full Review »