Though we saw most of the units in action and got a good sense of the gameplay, we didn't get to see much of Battle Realms' two single-player campaigns, which apparently still need to be finished. In addition to finishing the campaigns, the designers of Battle Realms will be busy thoroughly testing and balancing the game to ensure that the gameplay is as smooth as possible. One other element that still needs polish is the ability for any unit in the game to move about and attack on horseback--an ambitious feature that's still incomplete.
After covering the game and its clans for the last six months, we were finally able to sit down and actually play the game at E3. We were surprised to find how smooth the game runs and how clean the graphics look despite the fact that the game isn't complete. Screenshots don't do Battle Realms any justice, since the game has to be seen in motion to be appreciated. Like many of the high-budget first-person shooters coming out, Battle Realms uses animation-blending technology to smooth the movement of all its units, so when a Wolf Clan mauler goes from a walk to a sprint, that action is done seamlessly without any snapping or jerkiness. Pathfinding has also been "smoothed," resulting in units that start changing direction well before they come upon an object in their path, rather than waiting until they bump into that object first before correcting their trajectory--a sour issue with some other real-time strategy games. Because of its impressive appearance, its unique theme, and its many clever design elements, Battle Realms is shaping up to be one of the most promising strategy games this year.
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