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SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny Review

/ Jun 26th, 2012 No Comments

SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny

Faith in Destiny Review

Faith in Destiny Review

Nordic Games’ new release, SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny is an action-adventure RPG, available exclusively on PC and has a unique mesh of gameplay elements that really make it something interesting to play through.  Ignoring the fact that it is built off of a game that is, by now, six years old, Nordic Games utilizes what they have available in an extremely effective manner.

GAMEPLAY

In many aspects, gameplay is similar to that of games like Warcraft III or Age of Empires.  A large portion of the game is based around building a base then creating workers to construct buildings and amass resources for said construction.  From these buildings, you’re able to hire new units, slowly building your army into something formidable; much like the games I referenced, as you progress through the game, you are able to unlock new upgrades for buildings and units, making them progressively stronger and more potent.  On top of the unit building, there are the heroes you control throughout the game, leveling them and teaching them new abilities for combat as you go along.  Throughout the game, your character will meet new heroes who will join your cause (and leave for extended periods of time) and assist you in your journey.  In addition to these RTS elements, Nordic Games layered an RPG-esque level of depth to each of the characters.  As you progress through the worlds, you will find loot, whether it be through drops, chests, or vendors, that you can equip on any of the characters you have direct control of, along with being able to put skill points in to ability trees to make your champion play completely how you want to play.  Granted it’s not as in depth as Diablo or Skyrim, but it adds another level to play that is unique and interesting; these elements really encourage the players to explore the worlds to find loot, special enemies, and even special units throughout the map.  Not everything is good though.  I found the lack of options when creating your character disappointing.  Similarly, the repetitive feel of the game made it extremely boring at times, though for anyone who’s played these kinds of games before, you know that there’s a level of waiting involved before you can have fun destroying people with your army.  Also, I found some options unused.  While clever, the function to group units up so you can quick select them and arrange them to fight in a more strategic manner seemed altogether useless.  Hard as I tried, either the placement of enemies or their uncanny ability to know I was coming from, what seemed like, miles away, my attempts to subtly sneak up on my opponents never reaped anything other than my units getting massacred, forcing me to wait for reinforcements so I could safely advance.

STORY

Honestly, there’s not much to say about the story.  There was a system of portals that connected all the island-nations together, but it was completely collapsed, rendering the nations helpless and at the mercy of the demonic Nameless invaders.  In the midst of this chaos you, a Shaikan or “dragon warrior”, emerge with the need to find out why all this is happening.  You must repair the portals, defeat the Nameless, and force an end to this ceaseless invasion.  All in all, the story is pretty plain.  It’s definitely not the reason to play this game and you can play through the game with little to no real grasp on what’s going on in this universe, all while having a good time.  All you really need to know: the monsters attacking you are bad and you need to find their leader and kill him to put an end to it.

GRAPHICS

Faith in Destiny

Faith in Destiny

My first impression of this game, right when I booted it up for the first time, was that it was by no means going to be something visually stunning.  My initial thoughts generally held true.  Keeping in mind that Nordic Games is working with something six years old, they did a great job making it look nicer, but the fact is there are players who will flat out avoid a game purely because they don’t want to look at it.  The color palates used were very fitting for the world, though I believe each area could have been a little more interesting in terms of variation and stylistic differentiation.  There were also aspects of the interface I found clunky.  As I mentioned before, there was a feature to group up troops to be able quick select them – when you wanted to use this, sometimes I found myself having to click on the buttons several times to get the desired action to go through.  Likewise, the interface for spells was altogether confusing at times.  All the spells you used required you to click on them; there were no hotkeys to be able to run rotations of spells like one would expect from a game with RPG elements where you learn spells that are meant to be used several times in combat.  Having to move your mouse and ensure you click on these spells not only took away from the general emersion into the game, but it made fighting feel taxing and slow for moments at a time.

SOUND

The music and general sound effects are exactly what you would expect from a game such as SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny.  There is typical fighting music and tranquil music that you will hear, with little to no variety throughout the game, as far as I could tell at least.  The music was generally boring and even had moments where it would just abruptly stop as a new action took place – I would have really rather there been some sort of fade in and out to make things sound smoother.  You’re not going to be searching for the soundtrack when you’re done with the game, I can almost guarantee you that; there’s not much that’s genuinely special about the music of this game.

OVERALL

SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny

SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny

Nordic Games made do with what they had; building on old material is never easy because you are hindered by the capabilities of what you’re working with.  In this case, it was the six year old technology they were trying to improve upon.  In that regard they did great, but SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny just doesn’t stand up well against other titles.  There were moments where I really liked where they went with aspects of the game, such as the blend of RTS and RPG elements, but I feel like so much more could have been done with this game had it been developed in terms of new games, rather than from an old one.

Overall Ratings – SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny (PC)

Gameplay:

6/10

Story:

3/10

Graphics:

5/10

Sound:

5/10

OVERALL SCORE:

48%

Mike Zrimsek

Mike Zrimsek

Currently attending school to get a degree in Computer Science, I am an avid gamer of many genres. While I may be busy with school and work, I spend most of my available free time either playing games or writing about them.
Mike Zrimsek

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