First Glance (~2h played)
Take the old classic Master of Magic, mix with Civ5-like terrain and UI, throw in a hint of HOMM and add decent if not great AI. What do you get?
- You get racial specific, balanced units which can be buffed or upgraded.
- Lots of fighting between Mage armies, minor cities, monsters. This is the main focus of the game.
- There's lots of units, and you dont depend on one race, only start with one.
- Only three races, but at least they're balanced and there's a boatload of indipendent units.
- Simple spell research in place of tech.
- Ability to unleash said spells to modify units, terrain or cities.
- Simple but honest Truce, Pact or War diplomacy.
- A world to explore and expand upon. Then another world when you find a portal link to it. And another one after that...
- Guarded loot as in MoM, monster spawners, rampaging monsters, and other map features to keep exploration interesting.
- Some spells are fire&forget, others are buffs that require upkeep.
- Simplified economy. Few resources to manage, all directly related to keeping your war machine on the march and growing.
- Slightly convulted way in which buildings unlock other types of buildings or even troops.
- Very little terrain feedback! (Archery bonuses, terrain defense, etc).
- Oceans that are worthless except as passages.
- Pumpkins as a resource on which Shrines of the Rotting Pumpkin can be built. ikr, awesome!
- Resources that grant bonuses or allow for units to be built in the city.
- AI that can fight. (turn up the difficulty)
- AI that ... will occasionally attack Ghosts (weapon immunity) with a common melle unit (uses weapons). Genius, but doesnt really work.
- Gods, ability to anger gods, and become destroyed by angry gods.
- Multiplayer, so you can throw fireballs at your friends like they were pies!
- A dose of humor, as the game doesn't take itself too seriously. Unit responses and even unit names can be humorous.
Between Master of Magic, Civ V and Heroes of Might and Magic, Warlock mostly resembles MoM, but with tactical combat replaced by Civ's system. Why did i not know of this game before? Granted that it's not one of the best ever made, but it's very good and can favorably be compared to Civ V (IF, and that's a big IF, you want the game simplified and focused on combat). I think the name is stupid, that's probably worth 10% of a review score right there.