Ubi Soft Entertainment recently sent us some exclusive new concept images and a new screenshot from Warlords IV: Heroes of Etheria, its upcoming turn-based strategy game in development at Strategic Studies Group. Like the previous games in the Warlords series, Warlords IV will combine turn-based strategy with fantasy role-playing elements such as character development and spellcasting.
Warlords IV will feature persistent heroes who will develop over the course of the game, gaining increased abilities and skills, as well as magic items and treasure. In addition to a detailed tactical combat system for both field and siege battles, the game will include a complete diplomacy system to help resolve conflicts. Alternatively, players can use an auto-resolve option in battle to skip through the tactical combat. Players will be able to upgrade their cities, spells, and units over the course of the game, and they can also build new cities and roads. The game will also include automated resource gathering to keep players focused on strategic and tactical elements.
The game will feature a number of improvements on its predecessors, including an improved experience-based magic system with both strategic and tactical spells, unique computer-controlled opponents with better artificial intelligence, and new races such as the evil volturnians. In addition to the single-player campaign, Warlords IV will have multiplayer support for LAN or Internet play.
We've posted the new screenshot from the game in the gallery above, along with some new concept images showing off two different heroes, a castle, a city, and a demon ship. Warlords IV: Heroes of Etheria is scheduled for release near the end of 2002. We'll post more information about the game as it becomes available.