War of the Roses

by Adam Rochford 2. October 2011 09:52

Paradox Interactive announced a new game a few months back called War of the Roses.  FatShark, the makers of Lead and Gold appear to be giving the makers of Mount & Blade a run for there money.  While Mount & Blade: Warbands was a wild success with some small problems here and there, Fire & Sword was an utter failure.  While boasting much potential, Fire & Sword is simply an unfinished game that should have never been published.  While War of the Roses most likely won't be the type of command and control Mount & Blade was, it certainly will be a much better looking first/third person medieval fighting game.

Just like Mount & Blade it appears the main focus will be multiplayer combat.  War of the Roses will be more of an RPG than a strategy game most likely, but the details are small.  All I know is that in the realm of first person shooters, all of the games made about World War II, the medieval landscape is finally going to get it's just due.  Modern Warfare is great and all, but medieval games are small in number.  It's about time knights get the first person shooter treatment.  I can see it now, Call of Duty: Not So Modern Warfare.  The trailer doesn't reveal much at all but is worth a look.

War of the Roses Site

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Magna Mundi Preview

by Adam Rochford 22. September 2011 14:11

If you have played Europa Universalis chances are you have at least heard of Magna Mundi.  It has been a mod for Europa Universalis III for quite some time now.  Now Magna Mundi is going to be fully loaded.  Magna Mundi, meaning "Great things of the World" in Latin, has a full development team and should be released as it's own game sometime in mid January 2012.

Even though the game is originally a mod of Europa Universalis III, it will be nothing like Europa Universalis III, just as the mod was nothing like it.  Unrealistic things happen in Europa Universalis III.  Things that would never happen even in alternate universes.  Magna Mundi will be the opposite and will be shooting for historical realism and depth.  This will be a political game where you have to deal with the realities of the times.  The game will last from 1453 to 1815.

In Europa Universalis you will occasionally get a random stability hit with only a couple of sentences explaining why you got the stability hit.  There is no real explanation of why it happened, it's really just a random dice roll in the background based on a few factors of your government.  In Magna Mundi you are going understand why your country is destabilizing because you will be much more involved with the personable decision making process of a ruler.  Events will chain off of eachother to create the story of your nation.  These events will be directly influenced by your decisions.  It is the decisions that you make that will shape your country.  Like so many things in life, you will not have direct control over ever facet of your country.

The game will be global in nature.  Diplomacy is rather weak in Europa Universalis III while in Magna Mundi your diplomatic options will be less vague, more direct and more plentiful.  You will face the actual hardships of controlling colonies across the seas.  You will face the reality of what it means to be a ruler.  You will need to keep your allies close and your enemies closer. 

Over 50 trade goods will be represented in the game and trade will be much more in depth.  No longer will you be able to simply convert a province to a single religion, because most provinces will have multiple religions.  All of these things will come together to make a more plausible sandbox to play in.  While you can change the world in Magna Mundi, you will not be able to conquer it.  You will be one ruler, and one person can only do so much.  If you like politics, diplomacy, history and realism then Magna Mundi will be a game you will want to look into.  If you only really care about military conquest, then you probably be disappointed in Magna Mundi.

Power projection is as important of a term today as it was in history.  Magna Mundi will focus on how you make others look at your country and when you are tested weather you are willing to back up your decisions with force or retreat back to safety.  How your people look at your rule is going to matter.  How other people see your country is going to matter.

Unfortunately the latest mod version of Magna Mundi does not work for Divine Wind, but if you have Heir to the Throne I highly recommend checking it out. 

Mods

For more information about the full game check out the official site.

Magna Mundi

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Tropico 4 Review

by Adam Rochford 3. September 2011 12:26
Tropico 4

 

Here is our initial review of Tropico 4.  Tell us what you think about the new game from Haemimont Games.  Our guide to Tropico 4 strategy will be available in about a week.

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Europa Universalis III Divine Wind Achievement Update

by Brian Snow 1. September 2011 04:33

Updates will begin to be added for the 50 achievements included with Divine Wind. Walkthroughs, tips and general strategies will be written to help attain the different achievements. One of the harder ones, No Trail for Tears, has been recently added. Feel free to ask for specific achievements or any questions.

Click below to see our guide to Europa Universalis III Achievements.

Europa Universalis III: Achievements

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R.U.S.E. Review

by Adam Rochford 30. August 2011 15:20

R.U.S.E.: The Art of Deception

R.U.S.E. is a beautiful game.  However graphics are never the key to a good strategy game, gameplay is far more important.  But what gives R.U.S.E. it's slick look is it's easy interface.  The zooming in and out.  The quick access to every single building and ruse is what makes the game.  The whole process of playing the game is fluid and makes the rush of it all actually fun to play.  The user interface makes taking on your enemy feasible and not a headache. Unlike some RTS games where clicking and micromanaging is a pain, this game makes it much easier to just simply play the game.

Zoomed out R.U.S.E. looks like a board game, as if you are playing Risk, but this is real time.  You will see your battalion of tanks stacked on poker chips.  Zoom all the way in and you see each individual tank moving across the field.

This game is not about building up a huge force.  It is often more about the rush and quick use of tactics and deception.  The absolute most time any game lasts is 45 minutes, it's usually more around a half an hour or less.  This game is truly all about the multiplayer.  Fighting the computer doesn't get a lot of replay value but can still be challenging.

R.U.S.E. is set in World War II.  The UK, US, Germany, Italy, France and the Soviet Union are all playable countries.  Each country has it's strengths and weaknesses.  The Soviet Union has infantry bonues, Italy has long range artillery, etc.  There is also a nuclear mode where nuke cannons can be built, but this kind of kills most of the fun.  R.U.S.E. is fun to play especially if you have a teammate.  The games don't last long so when playing multiplayer you can quickly get a feel for what tactics work and what doesn't.

You usually build your base within the first 5 minutes, this game does not have a big buildup.  Often you want to get your infantry to that strategic city or some anti air in a strategic forest as quickly as possible.  You'll need to decide which tactic if best for your country.  I've found many players like to play UK or Italy.  UK players will try to build a quick airforce with bombers.  Italian players will build massive artillery arsenals.  Some players simply go for a mix of everything.  Protecting your supply routes is key, and the amount of strategic options to play is surprising.  Simplicity makes R.U.S.E. fun and the variety of countries gives a different set of skills for everyone to take advantage of. 

If you like quick on your toes strategy, I highly recommend R.U.S.E.  I generally don't like games that force you to rush, but R.U.S.E. pulls it off well as a real time tactics games.  The units are unique and all have there advantages and disadvantages, the learning curve is quick to master and for once it's actually fun to just jump into this RTS online.  This game isn't for everybody, but as a real time strategy/tactics game set in World War II, no other game compares.  I haven't played this game on a touch screen monitor but it looks impressive, see the video below.

Total: 4.60/5.00

Graphics/Sound: 4.5
Gameplay: 4.5
Interface: 5.0
Replay: 4.0
Strategy: 5.0

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Reviews

Tropico 4 to release on September 1st

by Adam Rochford 27. August 2011 09:08

We've always been a fan of the Tropico series.  The newest release, set to come out September 1st, has brought about some controversy with fans of the series. Some say the new release feels more like an expansion than a full new game.  The graphics engine is exactly the same and most of the game will feel exactly like Tropico 3.  However it's the economy and foreign policy which is what will really shine.  The new release will include a Stock Exchange and several other buildings to bring some variety to Tropico.   A total of 20 new missions and 10 new maps, 20 new buildings, many more disasters including volcanoes, droughts, tornadoes and tsunamis, select your own cabinet from your populace and objectives from the different factions. 

Probably the largest addition will be the trading system.  No longer will your populated island starve just because you have no more room to build farms.  Finally a fire station will be added to Tropico.  Apparently fire has never been a problem for Tropicans until now.  Oh did I mention Facebook and Twitter integration, just what all us strategy gamers always wanted.  We will have a full review of the game September 2nd.  Until then you can either download the demo from Steam, or enjoy this trailer.  We will reserve judgement for the full release.  For more information, visit the official website.

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Previews

Europa Universalis III Guide Divine Wind Update

by Adam Rochford 26. August 2011 12:29

I have gotten most of the website updated.  If you have any problems with the site, please leave a comment.  I am currently updating the Guide to include information about the newest Divine Wind expansion.  If you have any requests for information to be put into the guide or any questions about Europa Universalis III in general, I am always willing to look into it.

Look at our updated guide here.

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Guides

Welcome to the new Strategy Nerd

by Adam Rochford 25. August 2011 16:14

The new Strategy Nerd is now online.  Within the next few days we will be adding new content and the old content back online.  I thank you for your patience.

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