Dominions 5: Warriors of the Faith launched last week and somehow it passed us by entirely. The last thing we want to do is upset the complicated 4X’s roster of angry, marauding deities, so I guess I’d better fill you in. Dominions pits players (and AI) against each other in a divine battle for the world. Each player is a pretender god with a nation and a race of ardent followers, all fighting over the position of top god.
Playing and understanding Dominions can feel a little like finally graduating from 4X college. You might have conquered Earth in Civilization and space in Stellaris, but ruling over the fantasy worlds of the Dominions series is just a little bit trickier. You can muddle your way through your first playthrough of other 4X games and still claim victory, but like its predecessors, Warriors of the Faith requires a few false starts before you really click with it.
Adam took the last game for a spin, and once he overcame the UI and the not-so-great AI, he got sucked in. Here’s his Dominions 4 review.
Despite the cumbersome interface and lacking AI, Dominions 4 is a remarkable toybox and even though I expect multiplayer to be the glue that makes everything hang together, I’m thoroughly engaged by the level of experimentation and exploration that the game systems allow. It’s almost like a more complex Cosmic Encounter, with a great deal of the excitement stemming from unusual and unexpected situations that place two bizarre rules in opposition to one another. It is an enormous game supported by intelligent systems, allowing for all manner of situations to emerge and to be handled as appropriate and possible.
Warriors of the Faith seems to be more reiteration with some tweaks than reinvention. The goals and moment-to-moment action are largely the same, but battles now include simultaneous movement for all units, and there are more ways to leave your mark on your chosen god by customising their bless effects -- the magical bonuses that can be summoned through holy spells.
Since launching on Steam last Monday, Warriors of the Faith has received a few patches -- one for each of its first four days -- fixing crashes, bugs, tweaking stats and making the battlefields bigger for large armies. There haven’t been any since then, which is hopefully good news.
Dominions 5: Warriors of the Faith is out now on Steam for £27.89/$35.99/€33.29, until it reverts back to full price at the end of the day.