Age of Wonders arose in 1999, in full swing of the strategy by turns. Without having stepped on the new millennium, the genre grouped titles of the quality of Heroes of Might & Magic II -with a third on the way, at that time- , Warlords , Civilization II , Alpha Centauri , … But, in front of so much rivalry for a market that might seem severely overwhelmed, the game enjoyed a deserved recognition.
Their mechanics, heavily influenced by the Heroes of Might & Magic saga of the late New World Computing , also drank from the acclaimed Master of Magic, a game that has not yet been resurrected at the hands of a firm heir. Three years later, the title would see its first and only continuation, which would also have an expansion distributed as ‘ stand-alone ‘.
We are talking about Age of Wonders II: The Wizard’s Throne and Age of Wonders: Shadow Magic . These two titles were able to maintain the essence of the original, expanding and improving the existing options, helping to forge a legion of fans that still endures, to this day.
Gathered part of the team that developed the original idea, the third installment of the saga was announced at the beginning of last year, after almost 3 years of project, although the final release was delayed from the end of 2013 until the end of March this year. 2014.
There is no doubt that fans of the genre have followed this process with great interest, and the bar that has been placed for Age of Wonders III is quite high. In recent years there have been too many failed attempts to recover classic sagas – whether official or not, and the fear of this type of failure always hangs over a project of these characteristics. But the title of Triumph Studios
it has been published as a pretty solid title, complete since its very premiere, and full of very interesting options. Today we are going to review the features that this game offers, which could well be one of the best 4X of this first half of the year … In addition to a worthy successor of the saga it represents.
Age of Wonders III puts different game modes at our disposal. We have two very distinct campaigns, one starring the elven princess Sundren – campaign of the Elven Court – and another for the human Edward – campaign of The Commonwealth– In addition to following an established line of argument,
we can gradually learn the ins and outs of this title. In terms of modes for one or more players, we can choose one of the 8 predesigned scenarios, with a capacity that varies from 2 to 8 players per map, or a completely randomly generated map. For online games, we will have to have a user account …
Since the guest games will only allow us to enjoy games for a single player. This registration is free, both from the game itself and from the website itself, and will allow us to access all the content designed for the multiplayer of Age of Wonders III .
Except for the modes with predefined sides, the capacity of personalization of the games is extremely high. We will start by establishing a few parameters -size of the map, number of players, difficulty, …- and we will be able to adjust the different variables that will form the random terrain on which the game will be played, including the possible existence of a Underworld habitable below the surface. We can also choose the mechanics of operation for the game turns, whether classic or simultaneous.
The first is the usual one in turn-based strategy titles, alternating the decision-making phases for the different factions involved. The second – stale of the Age of Wonders saga – allows all sides to take decisions at once, then resolving all actions.
There are different fantasy races – dwarves, elves, goblins, orcs, humans and draconians– to choose from, which will not limit our access to units of other species in the future, since we can annex cities of other races. On the other hand, each character must belong to a specific class: warlord, sorcerer, dreadnougth, rogue, druid or theocrat. In addition, we will select the different initial affinities of our leader, either with the different elements – fire, air, earth, etc – or the creation of life,
or its destruction. It is also possible to focus on aspects such as expansion or exploration. Finally, we will have the possibility to decide the physical appearance of this initial character thanks to an interesting editor that, although it is not full of options, allows a high diversity of aspects. We are also allowed to modify the coat of arms of our side, both in color and in the symbol shown on it.