Decide the fate of fantasy world full of Human kingdoms, Orc clans, Dwarven citadels and Elven forests. Play the role of an Orc or Goblin boss, a captain of the Human army or lead the elite forces of the Elves. Participate in castle sieges and village defense, assault and reconnaissance operations and swift raids. To be victorious remember that the amount and experience of troops is not always the key factor, organize cooperation between different types of units and use the landscape to achieve tactical superiority.
The great Orc chieftain and conqueror Ugraum, incited by the cruel shamans, gathers a huge horde to invade the land of Humans. Only a small, but experienced army of general Pfeil is able to fight against the powerful enemy. However the sides in this confrontation don't know that this is all just a part of evil plot of the dark powers.
Age requirements: ESRB Rating: TEEN with Blood, Fantasy Violence, Mild Language, Violence. PEGI Rating: 12+ with Online gameplay, Violence.
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP or Windows Vista, 1,4 GHz Processor, 512GB RAM, 3D graphics card compatible with DirectX 9.0c (128 MB NVIDIA GeForce® FX 5700, ATI® Radeon 9600 or higher), 3GB HDD, Mouse, Keyboard.
Posted on 2010-06-15 07:27:45 byCorbeau:
[Note: I originally posted the following review on my blog back when I first finished Fantasy Wars a couple of years ago - location is tangletowngames.livejournal.com]
Fantasy Wars is an old-school strategy game in all the good ways. It’s detailed and addictive, with a superb modern interface and graphical style. The only downside is the cliché setting, but the gameread more will keep the player too busy trying to survive to dwell on the story anyway.
Most of the Fantasy Wars experience is spent ordering around units in turn based tactical combat on a hex-based map. The core mechanics of the game are quite simple: units have movement points, hit points, attack values, defense values, and exert an old style zone of control that makes enemies stop when they move into an adjacent hex. Unit special abilities, inherent or earned through experience, combine with terrain to add several levels of detail to make things really interesting. Scouts can ignore zones of control. Rangers are invisible and gain combat bonuses in forests. Cavalry gains an extra strike when attacking (a charge). Pikemen are immune to charges, and fight best on flat terrain. Archers can attack from range and can offer supporting fire to adjacent units under attack. There are myriad special abilities that form the core of Fantasy Wars’ tactics, but the fact that they are all logical makes them easy to remember.
The single-player game is organized around three campaigns. The player must command and develop an army throughout a sequence of tactical missions that get progressively harder. The turn-based tactical combat is often challenging, but the real challenge is that the player’s army is persistent. Rewards and experience carry over from mission, but so do losses. The campaign is a constant struggle to achieve as many objectives as possible (and thus earn rewards) with the minimum amount of losses. It might sound prudent to adopt a strictly methodical strategy, but missions are all on a time limit and the quicker they are completed the more rewards that they offer (usually substantially more). Some level of caution is necessary though, because experience is everything. Upgrading veteran units and keeping them alive is absolutely critical to success. Experience could make a basic unit equal to a fully upgraded unit, or make the latter a killing machine, and you can’t buy experience with money.
Forging a core of battle-tested troops is so important because Fantasy Wars is quite old school about the difficulty level. It is a hard game. It’s not at all unbeatable (first time through I beat the first campaign on normal without losing/restarting a single mission) but it requires constant attention to tactics (I got lazy on the first mission of the third campaign, and got slaughtered when I abandoned formation - whoops). The odds that the game throws at you seem unbeatable at first, but the destructive power of a well-developed and commanded player army is also staggering. The AI is reasonably effective at commanding those hordes; though the AI isn’t perfect, it is quite happy to fight the kind of attrition warfare that the player can’t sustain over the course of a campaign. The difficulty of Fantasy Wars is extremely refreshing in the modern era of handholding players through most of a game.
Fantasy Wars’ interface is very impressively done, albeit not quite perfect. The game does a superb job of giving the player access to as many specific details as desired without cluttering the main screen with non-essential information. Want to know what something does? Either mouse over it or right-click on it, and the game will tell you. Combat outcomes are predicted with a high degree of accuracy (though not perfectly – this is a wargame, after all!) simply by hovering the mouse before giving an attack command. The only frustrating screen is for army management between missions, which is also used when purchasing reinforcements mid-mission. In that screen, the whole army is stuck into one long scroll list with little or no attention to sorting. Though there are filters for showing certain unit types, it never really worked fluidly.
The game’s graphics are another high point – not necessarily technically, but stylistically. Everything is bright and rich in color, with a great deal of ambient animation, providing an almost cartoon-like feel to the environment. It’s pretty to look at, and the level of detail is occasionally surprising (latest discovery for me: the individual men in a unit all look different – atypical for a strategy game at this level of mechanical abstraction). It all combines to form a surprisingly strong sense of place.
Unfortunately, Fantasy Wars falls down when it comes to story and setting. Think Warcraft and/or Warhammer and you know just about everything that could be said. You’ve got humans with feudal kingdoms rife with arrogance and splendor, hordes of barbarian orcs looking for plunder and mayhem, and an alliance of elves and dwarves dealing with ancient powers and striving for peace and survival against threats beyond the ken of the lesser races. The graphical portrayals are just as typical as their backgrounds: human knights in shining armor, massive burly and butt-ugly orcs, short axe-wielding dwarves encased in plate mail, and willow-thin elves who don't believe in real armor (nor real clothing for females, apparently).
Even though the story is utterly forgettable, that’s no reason to pass on a strategy game of this caliber. Fantasy Wars is a great tactical/strategic game in a genre that’s mostly devoid of competition. If you like strategy, pick up Fantasy Wars.
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Posted on 2010-06-30 19:00:55 byloblaw:
Fantasy Wars' sequel, Eleven Legacy, made a minor splash a few years back in US gaming circles, and I remember always meaning to check it out. The original, as far as I can tell, stayed close to European shores, as with many 1C products - which is a pity, because it's a phenomenal game, especially for the price. The turn-based combat does actually require some canny strategic thinking,read more and the game provides a reward system between levels for doing an especially good job of completing goals completely and on-time ("gold", "silver", and "bronze" victories). The units are pretty standard fantasy fare, as is the plot - think paperback books with knights and large-bosomed ladies on their covers, or any given set of Might and Magic cliches - but they're colorfully animated and fun to play around with. The combat system goes beyond the standard rock-paper-scissors dynamic popular in many RT / TB strategy games and necessitates careful movements and troop positioning, thanks to some handy innovations like archers that "cover" nearby troops. All in all, it's well worth checking out for $10, and it's really quite addictive! Though the game is newish, it should perform well on nearly any PC from the last 4 or 5 years, and the graphics, which are somewhere near WoW in terms of sophistication but with far less to render at a time, look almost as good on my laptop's integrated Radeon 3200 chipset as they do on my 5850 desktop.
Some may quibble with GOG's recent moves towards more contemporary titles - perhaps they should rename themselves "Good Old (and unheard of recent Russian) Games" for clarity - but it's great to see them supporting foreign development houses and bringing in quality games that might have otherwise slipped under the radar. Sure, there's a boatload of games by 1C and other Eastern European dev houses out there on Impulse and GamersGate, but many of them are quite terrible; GOG has gone through the trouble of once again selecting the best of them for us.
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Posted on 2010-06-15 20:22:56 byeagle123:
'Fantasy Wars' is by far one of the greats for employing strategy in a fantasy universe. Not since the 'Lord of the Rings: Battle For Middle Earth' series of games has startegy and the use of turn based gameplay made an effective combination. The maps are enormous and require that the player makle decision tactically in ways that make the plaeyr feel that they are personally partread more of the action. With multiple camera angles and the ability to zoom in and out, it also gives the player a birds-eye look of the action happening within the battle, which can also be extremely helpful when planning your next move. Also, I love the many different upgrades that are available to you that are not often available in games of this type (ie armor piercing arrows, faster boots, armor upgrades, and upgrades to mobile units such as ballistas, etc). I have been a startegy-buff most of my life, and by far this game has been one of the most challenging that I have played since my C and C days. If your are into fantasy and love a challenge (even on Easy!) , then by far, 'Fantasy Wars' will be just the ticket for those sleepless nights when you want to either conquers the world or to save it from the forces of evil!
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