Mixed or average reviews - based on 35 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 193 Ratings

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  • Summary: Warlock – Master of the Arcane invites players to take on the role of the Great Mage and build a powerful magical empire, giving mighty mages the ability to control armies and wield magic to wage war against one another, as they compete with other wizards for the title of Warlock.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 35
  2. Negative: 0 out of 35
  1. Aug 2, 2012
    A well-crafted, easy-to-play game with an entertaining fantasy bent, Warlock will have you staying up nights taking one more turn to blast King Rrat to kingdom come.
  2. May 28, 2012
    Quotation forthcoming.
  3. Jun 13, 2012
    The lack of depth does wear thin over the long-haul after you've played a bunch of match to their conclusion, but you may find yourself reluctant to let go until you've fully experienced into each faction's magical might.
  4. May 10, 2012
    Warlock: Master of the Arcane is a highly addictive and entertaining game, although it would not meet the need of a nicely-updated Master of Magic. The game perfectly fulfills the expectations raised and offers good content at an affordable price. And this is quite important these days. If it keeps growing in the right way (through some DLCs) it would become an unforgettable game, but needs to improve its AI and add more options.
  5. Jun 29, 2012
    Warlock is a combat-focused empire builder that can be quite addictive and enjoyable. It doesn't quite have the depth that would give it the kind of replayability we get from classics such as the Civilization-games, but it's fun while it lasts.
  6. May 21, 2012
    Warlock: Master of the Arcane brings you a magical world where winning battles gives you a pretty good feeling. The diplomacy part of the game is pretty shallow and the lack of a multiplayer mode is just a shame.
  7. May 14, 2012
    Tuning issues aside, Warlock is a fantasy strategy game that's more than just Civilization with dragons and elves because it's not Civilization at all. Far too many strategy games rely on Sid Meiers' classic formula, often bogging down in the process. It's nice to see a developer getting back to the basics and down in the trenches with goblins, werewolves, skeletons, dragons, clerics and the odd angry fireball.

See all 35 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 61 out of 69
  2. Negative: 4 out of 69
  1. May 17, 2012
    Everything one may want from a serious turn based strategy. It looks and feels like civilization, but has the intensity of the King Arthur 1 with the in-depth unit levelling system of Majesty. In short - an amazing game for 20$! Expand
  2. May 9, 2012
    Does anyone remember the combat in Civilization 4? Yeah, it was pretty tedious and annoying, wasn't it? Thankfully, Warlock: Master is a civ-style turn based strategy game all ABOUT the combat! Gameplay revolves around the 4X style of gameplay (eXplore, eXpand, eXploit, eXterminate) and while the game RIGIDLY follows that formulae, the way it does so, combined with a friendly user interface, fantastic graphics and a variety of units with distinct appearances and situational modifiers allows for tons of replayability, completely nailing the "just one more turn" aspect of these civ-style games. The most interesting feature I found in this game, however, is the ability to allow for multiple "worlds" to exist in the maps you generate. These "worlds" are basically separate maps you can access via portals on the main starting map. These additional worlds provide unique or rare resource nodes as well as monster dens that, if destroyed, yield very powerful spells. These worlds, are of course absolutely TEEMING with powerful monsters, to the point where they often overflow into the main map, so they aren't exactly something you can just claim unprepared.

    Now, time for the breakdown, this score is based on a 10 point system:

    Presentation: 8. Graphics and art style manage to be both cartoonish AND badass, but nothing really unique or too interesting.

    A.I.: - 2. The A.I. is sort of all over the place, no matter the difficulty. Making the game harder seems to just give the A.I. a resource advantage rather than making it play smarter.

    Gameplay part 1: - 4. I'm knocking 4 points off for the hideously bare bones diplomacy system. Or, lack thereof. Every so often a rival player will attempt to extort money or mana out of you, and your ONLY two responses are "WAR!" or to capitulate to their demands. I suppose this was the developers way to try and foster a cut-throat mindset in the players, by attempting to make war an inevitability rather than something that can be avoided. If you aren't currently attempting to murder the crap out of an opponent, stealing their land to add your glorious war machine, you're plotting how to.

    Gameplay part 2: +3. I'm giving 3 points back due to the aforementioned "glorious war machine" thing. Because while combat is the sole focus of this game, it manages to be DAMN GOOD. Every battle, every personal campaign I have launched or fought, every one of them has felt like an epic siege. The developers took the combat system from Civilization 4 and 5 and made it actually fun and interesting. For one thing, you can't stack units on the same tile. a single squad of units is a significant time and resource investment, which means you'll be handling a siege consisting of maybe 3-5 squads at any given time. That may seem like weaksauce weakness at first, but combine that with the spellcasting system and suddenly you've got 2 squads of black minotaurs with VAMPIRIC AXES and immunity to ranged attacks, leveled up and specced for city attacks laying waste to your enemies defensive fortifications while your shamans constantly heal them to full health while you're waiting for your Apocalypse spell to finish charging. And yes, there IS a spell called Apocalypse, it's basically the nuke from Civilization 4: Beyond the Sword, except in this case it actually DESTROYS CITIES and is a GUARANTEED one hit kill to any and all units in a 3-hex diameter radius from the epicenter. The only reason I didn't give all four of those points back is because naval warfare is really... lacking at this point. There are only 2 naval units at this point, as far as I know, and none of them are any good at damaging the various sea serpents that plague the oceans (which incidentally are capable of killing your ships in 1-2 hits) Transport ships are a non-issue, as moving a land based unit onto a water hex automatically spawns a transport ship for them.

    Music/Sound: 0. No points given or taken away for this, as the sound effects and music are exactly what you would expect, nothing spectacular but nothing horrible either.

    Graphics: +1. Looks pretty without bogging down my computers framerate (I have been playing this game on a 2011 Acer Aspire laptop with AMD Radeon HD 6650M graphics card)

    Mics. : +0.5. I'm giving a bonus 0.5 due to the fact that I can skip my opponents turns by clicking the mouse repeatedly. Final Score: 7.5

    So close to perfection, but a few nagging problems keep this game from being perhaps the best 4x turn based strategy game I have ever played. Hopefully the negative elements can be fixed through either patches or expansions. I mean c'mon, as much fun as I have duking it out against the other empires on the field of battle in this game, it would be nice to be able to ally myself with another empire so I don't feel like it's just me against the world all the time.
  3. Mar 19, 2013
    I'm on my second playthrough now, this time with the Armageddon DLC. I have to say that I am really enjoying it. It's not revolutionary, but very satisfying in many ways. Recruiting your first Gold Dragon from an alternate plane is very difficult but rewarding. It is very much like Master of Magic but without the tactical combat. The Armageddon mode changes the game completely and is even more fun than the original.

    I'd give it an 8 except I got it for so cheap on Steam that I have to give it a 9. For me it was an excellent buy.
  4. May 9, 2012
    Very fun beautifully crafted 4X. I love the civ-like interface- Fans of the genre can basically sit down and start playing. All concepts from prior installments are there. Reasonably priced. I'm docking a point for lack of sandbox/map creation. Prior installments also lack this important feature- This alone keeps the series from attaining legendary status IMO. (That clumsy addon they released for the last game is practically useless). Also, I hoped they would have incorporated base production/mana etc.. values for tiles. Other than that, this game is a solid, good-looking title worth owning. Expand
  5. Jun 8, 2012
    A very enjoyable 4X'er. Pros: Great combat Great use of magic and spells Good application of formula Good random map Neutral: The 'other worlds' could have had some greater use, there is little to no reason to ever venture within them, as no faction ever spawns within.

    Lack of multiplayer
  6. May 10, 2012
    This game is great for what it has. If you ever played Masters of Magic, this game runs the same concept. You are a great mage in Ardania and want to become the BEST mage. You can do that by several ways (supposedly), and have a lot of units to help you get your utopia. The graphics are nice, the sounds and music are ok, and you can play on very different challenge levels, with more or less enemies and a few customizations for your avatar that make the game more interesting. Now what this game lacks (so far, as I've read in the official page that some of this features will be released later) are first and more importantly, a multiplayer (LAN and Hot-Seat at least) option, and from MY point of view, a campaign mode (since you only get to play on the map you created at the moment). Units are varied, but there is only 3 species you can use (humans, monsters and undead). And the units on each are virtually the same, but with special features each (undead are immune to dark magic, for example, but can't be cured with healing magic). The AI is quite straight forward, and there's a lack in the diplomacy department (when the NPC mage ask for money or mana, you can comply or declare war, there is no middle point). If you "ask" (demand is the button) something from them, even a little, is war. Once you take the capital, that NPC is dead, and all his remaining cities and units become something like "pirates" (they attack every other creature on the game, except themselves). Here is the winning option I mentioned earlier. You could try to destroy the gods, or become their friend (a pope of sorts, I guess), but so far, all the games I started ended with the heads of my "colleagues" at my feet... If the developers solve this little (but important) things, this game is priceless. :) Expand
  7. Jun 30, 2013
    Might have been a good game but it is so bug-riddled the world will never know. Even the most basic interface controls, such as clicking a ground tile, fail to work. A game that doesn't work, doesn't get any points from me. Expand

See all 69 User Reviews