Fate of the dragon game

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a game by Overmax Studio
Platform: PC
Editor Rating: 7/10, based on 1 đánh giá, 3 Đánh Giá are shown
User Rating: 8.4/10 - 18 votes
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Charles Dickens, William Shakespeare, Daniel Defoe - names that every British school child holds dear, và whose rip-roaring tales of love, life and derring-vì chưng in these sceptred isles never fail lớn hold teary-eyed readers spellbound... Well maybe they don"t have sầu quite that effect, but at least you"ve sầu heard of them. Now what if I said to lớn you - Luo Guanzhong. Then you"d look at me blankly or say bless you. But you might say, "Ah yes, Luo Guanzhong, the famous 14th-century novedanh mục, author of The Three Kingdoms." Which would tell me you either went khổng lồ school in Đài Loan Trung Quốc or you"re one of those irritating gits who knows everything & always wins at Trivial Pursuit.

Thanks to lớn Eidos however, the venerable Luo is about to lớn become, if not a household name, at least a little better known outside his native lvà. It is his historical novel about the fall of the Han dynasty in the 2nd century & the subsequent division of China into lớn three separate kingdoms that forms the basis of this real-time strategy game. To add to the authentiđô thị the game itself is also a sản phẩm of that vast & ancient nation, having been developed by Chinese team Object Software.

Deja Vu

The blurb that comes with the game tells you that you must take up the mantle of one of the three warlords of the time, Cao Cao, Lui Bei và Sun Quan. By using guile and cunning, or failing that, outright brutality, you must lead your third of China on a mission to bring the other two kingdoms under your wing and rebuild the shattered nation. Great, you"re thinking as you eagerly open the box while simultaneously phoning for a number 23, a 54, & some prawn crackers on the side. The evocative sầu intro sequence, depicting the three generals battling it out on the plains of Trung Quốc only seeks to get you even more in the mood for something a little different & then...

At this point you might be forgiven for checking that you haven"t put one of your old games in the CD drive by mistake. For by now a rather alarming sense of ddjd vu will be creeping over you.Hang on, haven"t I played this somewhere before?

Indeed you have sầu, because Three Kingdoms: Fate of the Dragon bears an uncanny resemblance lớn Age Of Empires. We"re not just talking a passing graphical likeness here; great swathes of gameplay have sầu also been liberally lifted from Ensemble"s masterpiece, especially the style of settlement building & resource management.

Saving Graces

Having made my point - Three Kingdoms is more of a tribute b& than it is the next Abtía -I won"t dwell on it any further. Let"s turn instead khổng lồ some of the more original touches that Object Software has implemented. The first of these becomes apparent in the way you use your non-combatant population in the game. While it is necessary lớn build up a sizeable force of workers khổng lồ gather resources, build new structures & turn raw materials inkhổng lồ more useful ones, they can also be pressed into active service. By sending members of your population to lớn a barracks you can train them up as sergeants & thereby begin to build your military force. Where this dual-use scenario really comes in handy is during times of peace. Instead of having your army standing about idly và consuming all your hard-earned resources, you can put them back to lớn work as humble builders và gatherers. Then, when things start hotting up again, you can retrain them as soldiers at a fraction of the original time & cost.

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Some thought has also gone into the art of war. Your soldiers march on their stomachs & need to be kept fed and watered if you want them lớn persize at their peak. While they are garrisoned in a friendly town they have sầu free access to lớn food và wine, as long as you have some stockpiled, & will stay on top khung. However, as soon as they start traipsing about in the wilderness they will begin to lớn decline. Keep them hungry & thirsty for long enough and they will degrade lớn the point that they look about as dedicated and confident as Engl& going into another World Cup.

Fortunately you can offset disaster with a bit of forward planning. By equipping your army wifh one or more supply wagons, you can mix up staging camps en route to the site of your intended conquest và these help to lớn keep your force in good shape.

A Siege My Liege?

Provided you spare enough resources for some research you can also build a variety of siege equipment, và fortunately each city in the game has a pre-made gate & walls to lớn avoid disappointment. After all, there"s nothing worse than dragging a siege ladder halfway across the country only khổng lồ find that the inconsiderate sods haven"t even bothered building a wall in the first place. However, whether you scale the walls or just tear down the gates, every combat situation tends lớn deteriorate quickly into lớn a bit of an unstructured brawl.

Three Kingdoms employs an unusual two-map system, which is more akin khổng lồ some older RPGs lượt thích the Ultima series than most RTS games. Each đô thị has its own detailed maps, which is where most of the construction and resource-management activity goes on. There is also a "wilderness" bản đồ at a cruder scale in which cities are represented by buildings. You control units in exactly the same way in both maps, but just switch between the two as necessary. No doubt Object Software had sound reasons for arranging things this way rather than having the customary single-world maps, but I have sầu lớn confess I found it rather annoying having khổng lồ switch repeatedly between the wilderness maps và the various city maps in the game.

It"s great to lớn see some original hàng hóa coming out of China, & hopefully we"ll see a lot more of it in future. But I have lớn be honest and say that Three Kingdoms didn"t quite bởi it for me. If you haven"t played any of the Age Of Empires series extensively & the Chinese scenario sounds like your bag then you will definitely get many hours of pleasure out of this product, but sadly a classic it is not.