Elemental: War of Magic was a pretty disappointing game. So much so, I never actually managed to complete a game: a mixture of uninspiring game mechanics and odd interface designs coupled with my sometimes short attention span meant that I never got past a hundred turns or so. Even the fairly major patches failed to entice me back. But now, a year or so later, and the Elemental: Fallen Enchantress beta is out. This expandalone/sequel looks pretty interesting as (a) the guy behind the CivIV:FfH2 mode is helping to design it, and (b) I’ll be getting a freebie copy. However, I don’t usually bother playing betas: life’s too short and anyway, I like discovering a game’s underlying systems and you can’t really do that when the rules change several times every game (unless you’re playing Fluxx). So instead, I’m going to revisit Ele:WoM.
Version 1.4 to be exact. I can’t imagine that this will go well, as I have a feeling a few of the main game systems have changed since I last played the game. Although saying that, it’s not like i ever figured how to play it anyway. 🙂 So, welcome to the world of Peashaskas (I let the game’s random name generator name my world)
Oh, for those who are interested, I left all the world and difficulty options on medium. And I’ve chosen one of the default sovereigns. In particular, this guy:
I have chosen to lead the Kingdom of Gilden. Who’s defining characteristic is the colour yellow, and a 25% bonus to metal production. With a medium world, the game defaults to 5 factions in total. Which doesn’t seem to be that many, but hey, we’ll see what happens. I’ll be up against another two kingdoms, and two empires. I’m trusting the game to default to sensible options here.
Once the game loads up, I find myself on my own and in the wilderness. I guess the first thing to do is found my capital city. The tile I start on seems like as good a place as any, so that’s that done. Uhaniale has been founded. The game presents me with the option of stationing my sov in my capital city, but as there’s no indication of why this might be a good idea, I leave the box unticked. I’m sure Uhaniale will do just fine: construction has already started on a Beacon of Hope. And while the peasants build beacons, Markinn heads out to explore.
It turns out there is loads of useful junk lying around. It’s like CivIV’s goodie huts turned up to 11. Already I’ve stumbled across an abandoned caravan filled with materials, a crude bow, and a token of the friend. This allows me to summon a dog to my side.
A little bit further from Uhaniale and I stumble across an old adventurer who tells me about a silver flute. How exciting. I head off to the mark on my map. On my journey, I find another token of the friend. So, I now have two pet dogs, both named Annie. A few turns later, I reach the resting place of this hallowed flute, but sadly there are some brigands guarding the flute. I’m not quite sure why these men have devoted themselves to protecting the flute, or even, why I want the flute in the first place. All I know is that it’s a quest, and so I should go and get it. If this means killing and stealing from “brigands” then so be it. Time for my first tactical battle! Time for Annie, Annie and I to show these guys who’s in charge around these parts. I start by casting the only spell I know: arcane arrow.
Well, that was effective. The two Annie’s swiftly take care of the remaining bandit. Victory and, more importantly, the silver flute, is mine!