Friday, 17 May 2024

Age of Wonders: Planetfall Review

Age of Wonders: Planetfall is the latest installment in the long-running strategy franchise. With its unique strategy-driven battles and creative alien factions, this game is worth the wait. Whether you’re a fan of the series or new to the game, there’s plenty to enjoy in this futuristic world.

A New Frontier

Unlike previous Age of Wonders games, Planetfall takes place in the future, where you wake up from cryogenic sleep to build a new empire on alien landscapes. The alien factions you encounter are incredibly diverse and interesting. From the purple-skinned Syndicate, with their powerful psionic attacks, to the nearly undead cyborgs of the Assembly, every faction brings something new to the table. The genetically engineered Amazons, for example, are stealthy warriors who ride dinosaurs into battle. Choosing a faction can be challenging because they are all so captivating.

Expanding Your Dominion

As the leader of your chosen faction, your goal is to expand your empire by planting your nation’s flag and pushing your boundaries across the planet. Similar to other 4X games, you’ll research technologies, construct buildings, and manage your population’s happiness. However, in Planetfall, this top-level strategy aspect feels a bit stale, with limited interesting choices for development.

Diplomatic Challenges

While exploring the world, you’ll encounter other races who will send you on missions, keeping you busy as your citizens work on production. However, diplomacy in Planetfall is challenging. Despite running favors for other nations and engaging in trade, maintaining peaceful relations can be difficult. Conflict often seems inevitable, making political negotiations feel more like temporary delays.

Epic Battles

Where Planetfall truly shines is in its combat system. The turn-based battles can be slow at first, but the option to auto-resolve low-risk encounters allows you to focus on the more exciting encounters. As you build up your armies, issuing orders on the battlefield becomes incredibly satisfying. Each faction has its own unique units and playstyle, adding depth to the action. From the explosive-loving Dvar to the Assembly’s rushing hordes, there’s a faction for every playstyle. The ability to have multiple armies join a single battle creates epic encounters with over 40 units in play.

Strategic Depth

Your armies develop intricate team synergies, adding layers of strategy to the game. The insectoid Kir’Ko, for example, gain defensive buffs when positioned near each other, while hero units collected through missions become powerful commanders. Upgrading these units offers a range of enhancements, boosting their attacks and granting special immunities. Basic units can also be equipped with mods, allowing for customization and a variety of tactical options.

Conclusion

Age of Wonders: Planetfall may take some time to get into, but once you do, you’ll find a rich and captivating experience. The unique factions and engaging combat system provide hours of enjoyment. While the top-level strategy and diplomacy aspects may feel lacking, the game truly excels in its epic battles and strategic depth. Whether you’re a strategy enthusiast or a fan of the Age of Wonders series, Planetfall is a game that shouldn’t be missed.

FAQs

  1. Q: Can I play Age of Wonders: Planetfall even if I haven’t played the previous games in the series?
    A: Yes, Planetfall is accessible to both newcomers and fans of the series. It offers a fresh experience in a different setting.

  2. Q: Are there multiplayer options available in the game?
    A: Yes, Age of Wonders: Planetfall offers multiplayer modes, allowing you to test your strategies against friends or other players online.

  3. Q: What platforms is the game available on?
    A: Age of Wonders: Planetfall is available on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

  4. Q: Can I customize my faction and units?
    A: Yes, the game offers customization options for both factions and units, allowing you to tailor your playstyle to your preferences.