Spellforce 2: Shadow Wars is a combination Real-time strategy and RPG game created by German game developers Phenomic as a sequel to their 2003 release SpellForce: The Order of Dawn and its two expansions (Spellforce: The Breath of Winter and Spellforce: Shadow of the Phoenix). Spellforce 2: Shadow Wars has been followed by the expansion Spellforce 2: Dragon Storm.
After a few reviews from the other pathetic mortals and Silvestro that write in this blog I decided to add my awesome divine touch by adding a review. Now lets get on to it
We start the game, hot chick with....underwear armor and a huge ass blade and a dragon. Typical fantasy theme so no surprise there. Lets start with the campaign. It starts with a cinematic and some ominous and dark words "We were warriors..." alright no worries. The video then goes on. I wont spoil it by saying what happens but just go to the technical parts. The cinematic for today's standards is funny. I could see at least 3 mistakes and I have not even studied it. Firstly the area is too flat, as if mountains just rose out of nowhere with cliffs and stuff, then the combat scenes are fake as hell, I swear most of the times the swords did not even land on people to kill them. BUT, take into account that its a rather old game so at that time, the graphics and cinematic ARE pretty impressive, so I give it + points for that. After the cinematic we are called to create our character. The female ones are hot as hell which is no surprise but I switch to the male characters because Diraen is everywhere and he is too awesome to be left out of any story.
I have one thing to say. The avatars were UGLY! Seriously other than one or 2 exceptions that they were ok, (the one that is considered "handsome" was kinda sissy like [because saying gay or fag is wrong]). Hell I wonder how the hell women make children with those guys! I mean....UGH! Even if I accidentally walked through a dish washer in one of my attempts to find Narina and stumbled in this world I would be extremely popular.
Stupid dish washer, no other world whatsoever in it. Not even Narnia.
Anyway, after I came to terms with the ugly (GAAAH) dude I was going to have to settle with, me and my ugly avatar begin the game. From that point on I have to say that I was fascinated with the game (despite that my dude looked even uglier than me, without the wild sexy look I have). The controls were typical strategy and rpg games, i liked how they managed to blend 2 genres extremely successfully. Let me explain
First of all we begin with the camera, you have 2 camera options, the first is the typical strategy top point of view. Which is best when you manage your base and want to micromanage the general units as to who whacks the other guys face and who hits that building. The other camera is following your ugly self (even uglier than the real one in my case, i guess i give them points for that, i mean it takes imagination to make something uglier than me!), in a 3rd person view. The typical rpg point of view. That is better when you want to just explore around with your ugly self and his hero friends, or just want to witness the battle from a 3rd person view.
The graphics are pretty amazing for its time. It has a very well created day cycle and they even made the armors shine depending on the sun and off course what they wear. Meaning that you see them shining brightly at day and glimmer in the moonlight at night. The terrain was far better than the flat one of the cinematic, with nicely made animations for trees grass and the characters (dont forget its not a very new game).
Then we have your ugly avatars leveling. Here its the rpg element. You get to talk to people, receive quests, sidequests, buy items, loot items gain lvls, you even get to fully customize your character and you even get to put helmets on him. Yes HELMETS! That explained how women actually bedded those guys. I mean the first time i placed a helmet to my ugly avatar i was like "Hooray! now you look a bit cool and less ugly!". I bet most men have their wives buy them cool helmets that they are forced not to take off. Anyway, the selection of skills was not that amazing and versatile, but it was far more than I expected giving you the ability to actually decide what your character will be as if it was a normal rpg.
The music was just amazing. Not something groundbreaking but it was good with some songs that were just plain AMAZING. I guess you find good music in games that not always get publicity. They managed to blend the music in with the places pretty well and passed the atmosphere of the place very successfully. One of my personal favorites is the song for Dun Mora where you go find the elves. It could easily be a big hollywood movie theme. Really...ask Yiota, she knows!
Finally lets talk about the story. I admit I havent finished it yet, but so far it goes around the same "darkness rising, hero saving the world with dragons" thing that goes on with almost every fantasy strategy game. However this one has a few things that keep you interested, the gameplay one of them, the coolness of the units the second, and off course curiosity as to see how will the story go this time. The story itself however seems rather interesting. Although it has a few classics and cliches it is pretty unique on its own. I like how they have made it so that each race has its own characteristics not bad but not good either. I like how it does not entirely condemn a race just because they are bad, but instead it just tells you a few backround information as to why things are the way they are. Another thing I liked is that the elves that help you are actually members of an Elven "prison" so to speak.
Overall I found it a surprisingly good video game, that offers more than expected of it combining 2 genres. The only thing I didnt like? Well they did not have the undead as a playable race, but I think they will remedy that at some point. After all there is a second expansion to be released