Rise of Nations: Rise of Legends
Is it a game, or a painting canvas?
In one word: aesthetics. In terms of design, this game is sublime. Presenting us three radically different, yet equally fascinating races: the steampunk Vinci, the arabesque Alin and the mysterious Cuotl. The first are a blend of Renaissance and Industrial themes, vomiting steam all over. They are followed by a race whose main inspiration comes from the Arabian Nights tales. While the first were science and technology all over, the latter rely on magic and manipulation of natural elements: glass, sand and fire. The third are, ideologically speaking, a mixture: a Mayan-like civilisation which is based on the tyrannical worship of its gods. What appears to be religious magic turns out to be the work of aliens who, after crashing in this strange world, became the bulk of the Cuotl pantheon.
As you can guess, gameplay is far from boring. Adopting the same philosophy from Rise of Nations, with resource caps and based around cities and borders, Rise of Legends is a bit more fast paced. It does not rely on ages, but rather on city size. As your main city grows with districts you build, new technologies become available.
The music is impressive, and you will recognise many of the tracks if you played Rise of Nations - musics which now sport a more classical and baroque, but nevertheless spectacular, theme.
The single-player campaign, mainly. A confusing and badly-developed story which revolves around a Risk-like strategic map. It can be entertaining at times, and it certainly is not short, but you will feel that something was lacking when you finally beat the game.
The Bottom Line
For those who enjoyed Rise of Nations, this is a must-have. For those who did not, or were not able to, this is your opportunity to fetch a great-looking, impressive and addictive real-time strategy game.
by KaiserChicken (11) on August 6th, 2007