The Armchair General's Delight
You know all those strategy games that claim to give the player large battles instantly? And how they all take a half-hour minimum? You know those games who claim to have customizable soldiers, but only give you three options? Well, this game truly delivers.
Alright, to back that statement up, I need to give a bit of background. I was drifting around, no game I could think of worth playing, bored out of my mind. So I came to the gamespot downloads section to aide me in my misery (popular past time of mine). There was this game, the one I am reviewing, that looked decent, so I got the demo (I try to play the demo before the getting the game, and so don't have many games I would consider bad. Lots of bad demos, though).
I went through the tutorial, and by the time it ended, I knew the game was good (who doesn't like grand fights, realistic controls, and the wonderful roman history as a backdrop?). Now, I know that the game is not RTW, as has been shown, but I must mention why the game's battle system is so much better than RTW's.
One, the view. I found the RTW view clunky (yes, that is the word) and hard to maneuver. This game has, by comparison, a simple view, rather similar to standard RTS's which is much nicer.
Two, set-up. No super-fast clicks trying to pull off that flank of yours before your opponent can move decent defense there. In fact, no clicking surges. In Single Player, 90% of the strategy is in how your line is deployed. In multiplayer, the player's in-battle flair is no more than 30% of the game.
And the order point system. This is a god-send. Instead of out-manoeuvres lasting the ten seconds until your opponent can wheel their entire line to crush yours, you often get the thirty seconds needed to break the enemy line and claim the day. Much more realistic.
Finally, the squads themselves. Instead of following other games with "experience," this game truly allows uniqueness in every squad. One could be tailored to fight infantry. But it is more than that. Because there are so many upgrades, and more opinions, so my Hastati who is designed to kill enemy infantry could still be the antipathy of yours. It is that good.
Overall, this is the only game I have known that truly allows you to be fighting a full-scale battle in less than 10 minutes and be done in 20. Currently, the only drawback is the multiplayer, as the player numbers are limited and the ladder a little clumsy, but there is a strong drive for a closer community and if you visit the forums, you should be able to get a daily game at least.
I have rarely been more pleased.