Viking strategy gem Northgard leaves Early Access

Northgard

Correction: The early access piece was from a year & two weeks ago, not two weeks.

We come from the land of the ice and snow~
From the midnight sun, where the hot springs flow~

If you’ve been anywhere near the UK this past week, you’ll have probably seen Winter (with a capital W) coming back for one last clawing grasp at our dreary little isle. Perhaps some of you even took a liking to the sight of snow on the ground, and your breath condensing in the air. These people are wrong and bad, but we love them anyway.

Mercifully, we exile those poor, wrong-headed folks to the frozen north now, albeit in RTS form. Northgard, the clever little Viking town-building strategy game from French outfit Shiro Games is out now, after a well-received stretch in the icy fjords of Steam Early Access.

It’s good to see an RTS released these days that looks so traditional. Chunky, in a way that few others than Warcraft 3 can claim to be. As much as I’ve enjoyed the likes of Total Warhammer and Eugen’s more zoomed-out strategy fare in recent years, it’s nice to see something so highly praised that looks like this.

On the subject of high praise, Brendan went and took a look at the early access version a year ago, and found it so compelling that despite finding Wisdom victories a little easy to achieve, he found himself compelled to jump in for just one more round after finishing his review. Hard to argue with that kind of praise, and while we’ll probably be taking a look at the final version of the game soon-ish.

Northgard is out now for around £17.84/$22.50 on HumbleSteam & Gamersgate.

12 Comments

  1. beridel says:

    I think that premature evaluation was from two weeks and a year ago…

  2. QSpec says:

    The Linux build comes out tomorrow for the 6 or so of us who care about that.

  3. satsui says:

    Best RTS to come out since Starcraft II in my opinion. It’s a fantastic game that reminds me of earlier The Settlers games. While each clan generally has the same research path and units, there are special units and unique research paths for each clan too, plus their own unique specialties. I think this gives the game a lot of variety. Plus, the map replay at the end similar to earlier Civilization games is a great bonus.

    I only wish there was a “random” button to start a game. I have difficulty deciding which clan to play each game because they’re all good in their own way.

  4. racccoon says:

    Glad its out of jail!
    I’ll consider buying it now. :)

  5. HigoChumbo says:

    This game is absolutely fantastic, which comes as a surprise for something so apparently simple.

    It’s amazing how to manage to give all multiplayer games a nail-biting ending, it’s great to see how there is no such thing as “automatic-pilot” and you can find yourself struggling to survive against the elements and the lack of food alone. It’s lovely how securing/preventing expansion and victory timers encourage action, strategy and almost forces teamplay by game design alone (something I was missing in a game since the days of the old Battlefield 2 mod Project Reality).

    They can still add more content and polish some details here and there (tweak victory conditions, make combat and raiding more interesting, better reconnect functionality, etc.) but this game is already a masterpiece in my humble opinion.

  6. morganjah says:

    I love this game.

  7. Cederic says:

    The real question though from someone that knows how crap they are at online play: Is the single player any good?

  8. Sentinel says:

    Yes, the single player is great.

    I haven’t played the campaign yet, so I can’t comment on that, but I’ve put 40 very happy hours into single player skirmish matches. The different clans all encourage quite distinct play styles, the AI is very decent, it’s a real joy.