Generic Imaginary Conflict

As I’ll be elaborating in my Armageddon Empires review (which I’m still writing, as I keep on playing.), December somehow ends up being a month where if it’s not turn-based, I’m not interested. Having turn based kissing with my girlfriend has proved unsatisfactory, but alongside AE, I got a kick out of this demo
New Orc, New Orcs, the build queue so good they named it twice.

It’s Fantasy Wars. The 355mb (Or just over 22 peggles) demo includes two levels. The first is a little simple, but the second allows you to have all the orcs and knights and similar as you desire. It’s closer and more combat (as opposed to exploration) driven than the Heroes of Might and Magic games. Main feature that stands out is the Civ4 like purchasing of traits for your armies as they (rapidly) gain experience, which is pretty neat. Also, it has a name that’s so generic it kind of loops around into being incredibly awesome. Developers – take heed. We won’t be happy until Infinity Ward bring us Shooting Game. While it actually hits the shops in February in the UK, it’s already available to buy online if it takes your fancy.

22 Comments

  1. Yhancik says:

    Turn based kissing doesn’t sound too exciting indeed. I guess it’s better when it’s first person (and co-op) too.

    But seriously… *sigh* orcs and knights ? And elves i suppose :p ? Would players be so lost and disappointed if their non-futuristic videogames had something… else ?

  2. Kieron Gillen says:

    It is a war with fantasy in it.

    KG

  3. Tom Lillis says:

    Yhanick:

    I’ll take another swords and sorcery title over yet another World War II game. At this point, I think I’ve logged more hours playing WWII-themed games than my grandfather actually spent fighting in the real damned war, which is sort of disturbing.

  4. fluffy bunny says:

    Everyone who liked games like Fantasy General will love this. It’s one of my favourite games of 2007 (it’s been out for a few months over here).

  5. Yhancik says:

    @ Tom Lillis :
    I can’t decide which one is the most unoriginal…

    Maybe a WWII game with orcs ?
    Wait… that might be cool actually!

    Anyway, I still believe that the human imagination is able to create a videogame universe that doesn’t contain marines, orcs, zombies, reptilian aliens or guys with their name on their t-shirt ;)

  6. Tom Lillis says:

    Hm, Marines AND orcs. Hellboy: The Early Years: The Videogame. That way, you even get Nazis!

    But yes, we can come up with other stuff. See BioShock, which is all about the neo-retro-futurism with an art deco flair. Unfortunately, that is getting crapped upon left and right lately, which makes me sad. I even avoided the comments when Gillen posted the link to he defense piece, mostly because I figured I’d spend most of the time wincing.

    (And, yes, I do recognize that the complaining is mostly about the gameplay, which is fair, but I feel inclined to let that go a little bit because, hey, let’s encourage inventive setting design!)

    I think I’m going to go ponder that Marines and orcs thing a bit, though. This has potential…

  7. Kieron Gillen says:

    A friend of mine has a comic which is trying to find a home which is, basically, LoTR meets WW2.

    KG

  8. WCAYPAHWAT says:

    Hmm…. Orc infested WW2…… Wasn’t there that one level in The Darkness somewhat similar?

  9. Garth says:

    “I think I’m going to go ponder that Marines and orcs thing a bit, though. This has potential…”

    War…hammer? (40k)

  10. Devin says:

    Or taking it the other way, the Black Company, which was a take on some fairly modern, sympathetic soldiers hired on to serve under, basically, one of the Nazgul. (And which was also the major inspiration for Myth).

  11. I_still_love_Okami says:

    I’ve seen the box at my local game shop and all I could think was how extremely generic the name sounded. I didn’t even pick it up and turn it around to take a look at the screenshots, I just couldn’t be bothered.

    But after reading this little piece and some of the comments here, I’m downloading the demo. Thanks RPS for bringing low profile titles I’d otherwise completely miss to my attention.

  12. Flint says:

    To go back to the WW2 with orcs thing: I can’t remember the game’s name, but somewhere around 1998-1999 a strategy game was released where modern warfare human troops fought against evil fantasy monsters. I think it was one of those East-European developed games which never got any fame but IIRC the reviews I saw were generally somewhat favourable.

  13. Kieron Gillen says:

    Okami: I think it’s definitely worth playing the demo. I couldn’t confirm it, so didn’t mention it in the post, but there’s talk that the Space Rangers 2 designer was in the project to begin with, before he left to do his own thing – which is a neat influence, if true.

    KG

  14. Bobsy says:

    I think the transformers went to WW2 once, too. Hell, everyone should visit WW2 at least once in their lives.

  15. Janek says:

    I hear it’s nice this time of year.

  16. Tom Lillis says:

    Garth says:

    “I think I’m going to go ponder that Marines and orcs thing a bit, though. This has potential…”

    War…hammer? (40k)

    Meh. Space marines don’t count.

  17. I_still_love_Okami says:

    I just completed the short Goblin mission and am halway through the Human mission. Everything about this game is so extremely cheesy and generic (I loooooved the intro video. That was funnier than Portal, really!), it’s ridiculous.

    But I reallyrather liked the gameplay. The interface feels a bit awkward and looks ugly, but I’ve seen worse. I’ve never played Fantasy General but I did play Panzer General and Fantasy Wars is really more like the General games than Heroes. Except for the graphical style, that’s a blatant Heroes V ripp off.

    Next on: Aquaria Demo. This is starting to feel like “Demo Sunday”..

  18. Garth says:

    I wasn’t really impressed with the game. The interface is completely cluttered with buttons that don’t do things, or don’t need to take nearly the space they do.

    The Orc mission was insanely easy, and the human mission.. isn’t. A tutorial of how to use all the thousand-million buttons might have helped.

  19. I_still_love_Okami says:

    I failed the human mission first time I tried (they could have told you beforehand that there’s a time limit!) but completed it on my second try. I was really entertained for some time.

    It’s a shame, that the story and setting are so extremely derivative, otherwise I might be tempted to buy it. The gameplay really is very solid and the interface, though ugly and cluttered, at least doesn’t offend outright.

    I really liked the unit special abilities. It’s easy to have two units of the same kind with very different roles, just by giving them different special abilities. Specialising one of my Ranger units in all kinds of forest, ambush and skirmish skills and then having them lurk around the forests to the north of town to wreak havoc on a larger enemy force was really fun.

    I like it when using obvious tactics in strategy games works just as you’d imagine they would (I guess that’s why I’m such a huge fan of the Total War series and probably the only living beeing that thinks that Warrior Kings was one of the best RTSs ever made) and Fantasy Wars really works in this respect.

    Still, the extremely unimaginative, derivative and generic background and story just turn me off…

  20. groovychainsaw says:

    Stop with the turn-based crack, Kieron. I’d already sworn i was buying no more games before xmas, then I played that armageddon game (the number of times now I’ve gone to the purchase page and sat there, twirling my credit card like some pantomime villain until i turn it down), and now this, which sounds like more of the same brilliance. That can be easily purchased online. Damn. I think I need one of those turn-based addiction centres or something.

  21. Javier-de-Ass says:

    Ah man. This wars game is fantasystic.