Sunday, October 29, 2000

Spellforce Universe | 8.0

As a big fan of rts games and rpgs, this was a pleasant combination of both. It did a great job of balancing the heros abilities with the rest or your units. And for the price you can't go wrong with this game. It was an easy clean install and after the initial install the game played perfectly. The only complaint I have is with the first spellforce, there is now way to do a skirmish with just the computer so after you finish the campaign there is only online multiplayer and there really isn't any of that. However, skirmish mode has been added to spellforce 2 which is fine since I only played the first one for the campaign.

The first spellforce:
- This isn't a game for everybody; it's not a "true" RTS nor a very deep CRPG. If you can't deal with that, don't buy it.
- It's a mix of both but on the light side of things. I like that because I'm bad at "real" RTS games.
- It's a very entertaining game which is nicely paced. It starts off slow but you'll get some rather difficult scenarios after that.
- In order to develop your avatar into a powerful force you need to do all side quests and stick with the skills you have chosen from the beginning (like Elemental Magic) and watch what attributes you need to be able to increase the skills to the next level. I recently replayed both this campaign and the follow-up (Breath of Winter) and it makes a big difference. I reached Level 29-30 without a problem.
- The different ways of building your avatar adds a lot of re-playability to the game.

first you must consider the main features. SF2 is a combination of two genres - RTS & RPG. This means that you can switch to a 3rd person view, collect items, solve quests and get skills for your avatar & hero party through a skill tree.

Fascinating is especially the mission design & the story concept. I really enjoyed it and its really a way different from other RTS games. On the whole the single player campaign has a playtime of more than 40 hours. But then there is also a free game mode campaign which has nearly the same playtime and can be played as well with friends over the internet. I can recommend it to any fan of RTS & RPG games. Its just the perfect blend between Dungeon Siege & Age of Empires.

Spellforce 2 is about a 8 out of 10, and is an effective mix of both RTS and RPG, however, it does neither genre particularly fine My biggest criticism is that all online screenshots look astounding. .In this game, there is a large drop off between High and Medium graphics settings. My PC kicks butt by a few years after these game engines came out.

During their journeys, your avatar and his hero companions will often find it required to call upon the military of armies to accomplish their objectives. This is where the game's RTS elements emerge. You gain workers who gather resources and build the structures compulsory to summon the military units for your army. You can also build self-protective composition such as archer towers to keep foes at bay. The RTS element of the game is far less altered from Spellforce. The first games had six races from which you could summon armies: Humans, Elves, Dwarves, Orcs, Trolls, and Dark Elves. Spellforce 2 includes the Barbarians, Gargoyles, and Shadows. However, the nine races are divided into the three factions: The Realm (Humans, Elves, Dwarves), The Clans (Orcs, Trolls, Barbarians), and The Pact (Dark Elves, Gargoyles, and Shadows). Unlike Spellforce, where you had to find runes and plans to summon armies from rune monuments, in Spellforce 2 you are acknowledged a headquarters as a base of operations. You gain access to new races, and more advanced buildings by completing quests. Instead of simply finding runes, there are representatives from each faction who will "bond" you to grant you the ability to assemble armies of their faction. Instead of their levels being fixed at the level of the worker rune you used, as in Spellforce, your units also level along with the avatar, albeit much more slowly; their maximum level is 18. Of course, you can still zoom in and out from an overhead view to a earth level "chase cam", viewing your avatar and units up-close. This is a enormous perspective to be grateful for the remarkable structural design of some of the game's arrangement.

I didn't play any of the expansions, but there is four here.

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