How do you balance -- and indeed encourage -- a war between factions without letting either side obliterate the other? How do you rule over gods, creatures, and men who refuse to obey you? How do you build a landscape of villages when bandits and mythology are conspiring to tear it down?
User reviews:
Overall:
Mixed (253 reviews) - 42% of the 253 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: May 23, 2013

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Reviews

"I can never play Skyward Collapse again. I work from home. Frankly, having it – and the accompanying temptation – within arm's reach would be detrimental to my productivity."
Richard Mitchell, Joystiq

"Skyward Collapse offers a unique twist on a stagnant genre"
9/10 - Rob Savillo , GamesBeat

About This Game

How do you balance -- and indeed encourage -- a war between factions without letting either side obliterate the other? How do you rule over gods, creatures, and men who refuse to obey you? How do you build a landscape of villages when bandits and mythology are conspiring to tear it down? Skyward Collapse places you into the role of The Creator, and frees you to tackle these problems your own way. Brought to you by the developer of the modern strategy classic AI War: Fleet Command, Arcen's second full strategy title is equally unique (but far easier to learn): a turn-based 4x strategic god-game.

Your task is to build and populate the floating continent of Luminith. You create -- but cannot control -- gods, creatures, and artifacts from both Greek and Norse mythology. The power you wield with these is immense: Heimdall's horn causes everyone outdoors to drop dead, for crying out loud. Your task is to keep both factions alive and fighting until The Master calls you home -- but this is harder than it sounds. Bandit Keeps pop up periodically, as do Woes such as floods, serial killers, guild strikes, and vegetarian uprisings. Every game plays out differently, and you'll need even the craziest of your powers in order to survive what lies in store for you.

Game Features

  • A turn-based strategic god-game where you control neither faction, but instead strive to maintain the balance of power.
  • Make towns and war as the boardgame-like floating continent continues to construct itself around you.
  • Persuade your minions into doing what you want by controlling the circumstances of their (brief) lives.
  • 16 gods, each with unique passive abilities and three active powers, help you further your goals as you pass into the Age of Monsters.
  • Level up your player profile by winning games. Twelve unlockable buildings in all!
  • Straightforward controls paired with an intuitive and helpful interface make this an easy title to pick up... but the strategy runs deep.
  • Multiple difficulty levels let you play a very relaxed game up to a nail-bitingly difficult one. There's no one best way to win!
  • Co-op multiplayer for up to 8 players.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS:Windows XP SP2 or later
    • Processor:1.6Ghz
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    • Graphics:Resolution at least 720px high, and 1024px wide.
    • Hard Drive:500 MB HD space
    Minimum:
    • OS:Mac OSX Intel CPU and "Leopard" 10.5 or later.
    • Processor:1.6Ghz
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    • Graphics:Resolution at least 720px high, and 1024px wide.
    • Hard Drive:500 MB HD space
    Minimum:
    • OS:Ubuntu 10.10 or later, although other unsupported distros may very well work
    • Processor:1.6Ghz
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    • Graphics:Resolution at least 720px high, and 1024px wide.
    • Hard Drive:500 MB HD space
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Overall:
Mixed (253 reviews)
Recently Posted
Salarn
( 2.3 hrs on record )
Posted: April 14
https://youtu.be/R3XP19tOaog

A strategy god game in which you learn about homeostasis by building up two factions at the same time and keeping their military strength equal. Military is important because in order to progress in the game blood must be spilled to earn enough points to keep going.

'Skyward Collapse' offers many unique and divergent design ideas that make it worth checking out what when right and wrong in the final product. As a spoiler to what went wrong, the game starts incredibly slow and would benefit greatly from better feedback for the current state of the gameboard.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
XWang
( 0.4 hrs on record )
Posted: April 10
It's a normal game, however the music is fantastic.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
BigBenBoulevard
( 2.0 hrs on record )
Posted: March 31
Not worth playing.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
trademark2
( 6.7 hrs on record )
Posted: March 30
I am sad to see this game get such negative reviews, because I liked it. The idea is to keep 2 civilizations balanced as they go to war with each other, and prevent each civilization from destroying the other, for as long as possible. The civs have unique units, like minotaurs and such, and you can build Military buildings and infastructure in one side if its in danger. But be careful! the military infastructure might tip the scales, but then the other side will be in danger. I remember this as a very fun game. Not sure why its getting so much negativity.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
taylob02
( 3.3 hrs on record )
Posted: February 13
Cool concept let down by shallow repetitive gamely.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
techno
( 1.9 hrs on record )
Posted: February 3
Like others have said this is a game you really want to like. The animation is nice and understated, which I didn't mind at all. The goal is to balance the factions, and it's hard, but mostly because it's confusing. It's probably a really nice game if you like running without solid instructions and like exploration, but ultimately I just found myself trying to do as little as possible and ended up stopping playing during the tutorial.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Doctor Jelly
( 0.1 hrs on record )
Posted: January 31
Is it a bad game? No.
I didn't like it though. Controls turned me off big time.
I did find it strange that it started off with a comic? And all the graphics were based on that comic?
Again, not a bad game, but I did immediately regret buying the game upon starting it up.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Auxica
( 0.6 hrs on record )
Posted: January 24
I wanted to like this game I really did. The concept is very different from someother strategy god-type games. However the excution is lacking to say the least... And while it seems like a novel idea to try to "keep the balance", it becomes very dull very fast. While it could be said this game is "unique", I wouldn't rush to define it as good. I would liken this to playing a game of chess against yourself; it's not my jam but hey, maybe it's yours?
Helpful? Yes No Funny
ZombieFood
( 1.2 hrs on record )
Posted: January 8
Not exactly the best

The premise of the game is to build up 2 distinct factions warring with each other. And to keep things interesting a thrid mean faction shows up and trying to wreck the balance between your trying to create between your two. I think idea behind this game is good it just doesn't turn out to be satifying to play.

A fun thing to expirement with but not something I'd want vest my time in.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Redrusty66
( 10.7 hrs on record )
Posted: January 5
kyward Collapse is an odd little turn-based strategy game where the player controls the building but not the movements of both sides of an ongoing war.The core idea of a balancing a strategy game with limited player control is intriguing
Skyward Collapse is a game that requires some dedication and time investment to really learn it. You have to forgive the fact that there is no animation at all - characters slide around the world like pieces on a board game. And I'm going to say right up front to buy this game with the Nihon no Mura expansion. It's only a little extra for it, and you won't want to be without the Super Smite ability that comes with it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Roger Wilco
( 0.6 hrs on record )
Posted: January 2
it makes NO sense lol
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Adryan
( 5.4 hrs on record )
Posted: December 12, 2015
Seemed like an interesting concept, but it turned out to be incredibly repetitive and dull. I very quickly found myself not caring what happened to either side or even paying much attention to what was going on during the battle phase. It was like I was laying down tract housing in SimCity, except the inhabitants killed each other and torched their neighborhoods while I was spamming the next row of buildings for them to burn down. To advertise that the player is supposed to "encourage" war is misleading - the sides war no matter what (and rather ineptly at that). Your godly goal is simply to lay down more tract housing so you can rack up sufficient points off their carnage. I suppose that if there was some actual *graphical* carnage or gore, it might be interesting ... but these units just blink out of existence when they die, so even their fighting is boring too.

I'm not sure who this game will appeal to, so I don't recommend it at any price.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Ariel the Chaos
( 26.5 hrs on record )
Posted: December 5, 2015
supper duper cooll indie strategy game
Helpful? Yes No Funny
[GALT] Envoy
( 0.6 hrs on record )
Posted: November 23, 2015
It is rare for me to buy games that I later find are terrible, and leave a bad taste in my mouth. And yet this game has done just that.

ENVOY RATED: 2/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Syrion
( 0.2 hrs on record )
Posted: November 22, 2015
Terrible graphics. Unintriguing gameplay. A UI straight out of 1999.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Spooner
( 1.6 hrs on record )
Posted: November 12, 2015
One of the worst games I've played, including free ones and ones made by children in 15 minutes. Need I say more?
Helpful? Yes No Funny
[Epic!]killy
( 0.7 hrs on record )
Posted: November 3, 2015
I played for an hour or so...still have no idea what i have to do in this game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
The User Formerly Known As
( 0.7 hrs on record )
Posted: August 10, 2015
Meh. Not too great. IDK...
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 90 days
3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
6.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 30
I am sad to see this game get such negative reviews, because I liked it. The idea is to keep 2 civilizations balanced as they go to war with each other, and prevent each civilization from destroying the other, for as long as possible. The civs have unique units, like minotaurs and such, and you can build Military buildings and infastructure in one side if its in danger. But be careful! the military infastructure might tip the scales, but then the other side will be in danger. I remember this as a very fun game. Not sure why its getting so much negativity.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 180 days
7 of 9 people (78%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: January 24
I wanted to like this game I really did. The concept is very different from someother strategy god-type games. However the excution is lacking to say the least... And while it seems like a novel idea to try to "keep the balance", it becomes very dull very fast. While it could be said this game is "unique", I wouldn't rush to define it as good. I would liken this to playing a game of chess against yourself; it's not my jam but hey, maybe it's yours?
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
6 of 8 people (75%) found this review helpful
Recommended
10.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 5
kyward Collapse is an odd little turn-based strategy game where the player controls the building but not the movements of both sides of an ongoing war.The core idea of a balancing a strategy game with limited player control is intriguing
Skyward Collapse is a game that requires some dedication and time investment to really learn it. You have to forgive the fact that there is no animation at all - characters slide around the world like pieces on a board game. And I'm going to say right up front to buy this game with the Nihon no Mura expansion. It's only a little extra for it, and you won't want to be without the Super Smite ability that comes with it.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
5 of 10 people (50%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
1.2 hrs on record
Posted: January 8
Not exactly the best

The premise of the game is to build up 2 distinct factions warring with each other. And to keep things interesting a thrid mean faction shows up and trying to wreck the balance between your trying to create between your two. I think idea behind this game is good it just doesn't turn out to be satifying to play.

A fun thing to expirement with but not something I'd want vest my time in.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
71 of 84 people (85%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
6.1 hrs on record
Posted: June 15, 2014
This is probably the first Arcen game that didn't hit the mark. All of their games so far have been fresh and quite fun, but have also always been flawed. None of them have been perfect, but they were innovative, and always try a different formula of game and were ultimately fun to mess around.

Skyward Collapse is another really cool idea, but the game doesn't come together. Resource management is tedious, the idea is really cool, but the execution leaves a lot to be desired. Turns keep taking longer, and every turn becomes a bit more boring than the last. I really want to like this game, but the longer it drags on, the more you see the game's flaws come together and create this game where there's a lot of different parts of the game that either don't feel fun, or feel out of place.

If you're interested, make sure you watch some gameplay, or try out some demo's. This game just isn't for me.
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76 of 110 people (69%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 24, 2014
Perhaps I had too high of expectations for this game, but unfortunately, it didn't live up to them.

In more ways than one, Skyward Collapse feels more like a mobile game than one which, it seems to me, was developed for desktop computing. Its simple graphical sprites would feel right at home on a tablet, but seem out-of-place on a PC. Making matters worse, the clunky user interface manages to simultaneously overwhelm the player with information, while not giving her enough data with which to learn the game.

Though the tutorial helps by walking the player through the early steps of gameplay, it seems very fond of telling her about things you'll have to worry about later on in gameplay, without telling her any appropriate steps to take when she does encounter them.

By and large, however, the major strike against this game is, well, it's boring. After the initial setup period, gameplay becomes unbearably slow, a pain which is only mitigated by the shortness of the games themselves. The position the game puts the player in changes throughout the game, leading to what are arguably contradictions: she has both the power to summon wild beasts and unquestioningly place down buildings to aid the mortals, but is subject to the resources they have on hand. Resources the game is fond of telling the player she's missing, but not how to acquire without a scavenger hunt through the long-winded information prompts scattered throughout the game.

While Skyward Collapse shows great potential through its promotional screenshots and videos, it fails to live up to it in execution, leading me as a player to be very disappointed in the overall game.
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31 of 43 people (72%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
6.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 11, 2014
If being a God is like this game, it's pretty lame. Let's be honest: it's not the worst game ever, it's a game that is just average in everything. The graphics are pretty simple, and I understand that top notch graphics aren't required to a game be any good, but the lack of things like character animation make this title looks worst than most of f2p cell phone games.

The objective is very inovative and distinctive from other God games: you should keep the balance between the factions. But it's simple boring, sometimes I just skip to the next turn waiting for something to happen, sometimes you need to make your "civs" ready to wage war, because there are an amount of points required to win the match in each difficult. And... that's it.

The interface is kinda messy, the game doesn't do a very good job in order to show to you what is needed to be built and what are the requirements for each unit... I'm not saying that this info isn't available, it's just so much pain to get to it.

So, let's wrap up: the concept is great, the interface is messy and clunk, the graphics are sub par and the music is quite good. Thats it, I can't recommend this game, but I would like to see this concept in a more polished and diversified game.
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26 of 35 people (74%) found this review helpful
Recommended
59.2 hrs on record
Posted: July 19, 2014
Skyward Collapse asks its player to take on the role of a mighty demon, sworn to maintain the world in a state of war for all eternity. For three ages, he must torment mankind with the endless misery of constant war, balancing the bloodshed and destruction so that neither side of the conflict wipes the other out. Only if the ground is soaked with enough blood and tears will he be victorious. It's not billed to the player that way, of course.

Skyward Collapse is an odd little turn-based strategy game where the player controls the building but not the movements of both sides of an ongoing war. The player chooses where each civilization's 5x5 towns will be placed on the game's isometric rhombic grid, and what buildings will be in them in what arrangement. Once units start coming out of those buildings, however, they do whatever they want.

While the player can exert some control by altering the landscape of the constantly-growing field of play, doing so drains actions he could be using to enhance his cities. The core idea here is actually quite clever, and maintaining the balance of power under these conditions poses a fair challenge.

The game is divided into three "ages," and the player has to meet a score requirement at the end of each to continue (or, in the final age, to win). The only way to score, however, is for units to die or buildings to get destroyed. I suppose it's obvious that I found that representation distasteful.

Skyward Collapse adds to the challenge with "Woes," which are random events that can cause most of the map to turn into mountain terrain, or all the units to wander around aimlessly, or giant monsters to appear everywhere. Bandit Keeps full of non-aligned units also form frequently, sometimes quite close to towns, and can pose a serious danger to the civilization balance because their units tend to be seriously overpowered.

The mighty bandits and deadly catastrophes mean that most of the time the game's civilizations are endangered more by the environment than each other. To meet these threats, the player has the ability to summon magical creatures and objects for either side, some of which can unleash the power of ancient gods worshiped by the denizens of his tiny world.

The gods and monsters come from Greek and Norse mythology. While each has an impressive array of specific units, unique monsters and appropriate deities, most of the buildings are nonspecific, which gives the towns a samey feel. This is compounded, especially in the early game, by the fact that no matter how different the buildings look, the resources and support buildings needed to produce specific units are pretty much the same. As a result, most of the towns end up being pretty similar.

The endgame suffers from a complementary problem. Once the production of units is well and truly going (and especially if the sides really are evenly matched) there's not a lot for the player to do. In most of my games I spent the endgame fast-forwarding as much as I could, only making adjustments when a town was in serious danger. The AI sometimes has curious priorities—I once watched a massive army parade peacefully past a minotaur that was destroying their city—but it generally works well enough that there's no need to interfere by altering the landscape.

This means that of the game's three ages, only 1.5 or so end up being interesting. The foundational work of making the first towns is too similar, while the player's role in the final conflicts is too passive. That compounds the unpleasant premise of Skyward Collapse with somewhat boring play. Not only did I have to be incredibly evil, I didn't even get to have fun doing it.

The core idea of a balancing a strategy game with limited player control is intriguing, but I found the execution of that idea, and the representations it used, unsatisfying. Arcen has made an ongoing and admirable effort to keep tweaking the game, but I'm just not sure that anything they can do will address the essential dullness of its opening and closing phases.
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29 of 41 people (71%) found this review helpful
Recommended
17.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
Skyward Collapse is a turn based god/strategy game. The goal of the game is to balance two opposing factions by supplying them with resources and buildings. You must cause enough chaos between the two factions to get your score high enough to pass through three rounds until you reach the end of the game to achieve a victory.

Skyward Collapse features one of the best tutorials I've seen in awhile. The game can be overwhelming at first, but the tutorial does a great job of holding your hand through your first game. The tutorial will teach you the basics of the game while giving you the freedom to play around and experiment as you see fit. You won't know 100% of everything after your first play-through, but you should understand the basic concepts and be ready to play a better game on your 2nd time around.

Skyward Collapse features very basic animation and graphics, it's best to think of it like a board game. Units move around the game like pieces on a board, and when they fight, they just bump into each other until one falls off the board.

I would say if you are interested by this review at all, you should go ahead and pick the game up. It is only five bucks, and even if you end up hating it, you've only wasted a few dollars. If you do not like turn based strategy, or if a lack of graphics or animation is a big turn off, stay clear of this one.

For more info, you can find my full review here: http://hashron.com/display.php?id=18
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43 of 66 people (65%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: July 1, 2014
My biggest problem with this game is that the ai does not do anything. both sides will stagnate and not do anything if left alone, and you are tasked with growing them to defend against bandits while stoping them from killing eachother, this is not entertaining. you end up having to grow both sides while defending against bandits, and it fails to feel like these are 2 civilizations, they are more like blocks you throw down, compleately inanimate.

This can be fun, but you end up having to build the entire game and create everything becuse they won't build a single hut on thier own. I would enjoy the game alot more, if they showed a little bit of autonomy.
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17 of 20 people (85%) found this review helpful
Recommended
26.5 hrs on record
Posted: March 12, 2015
A Paladin's Steam Review: Skyward Collapse. An Intriguing Combination of God Game and Turn-Based Strategy.
  • Genre: Turn Based Single & Co-Op Player Strategy God Game
  • Developed and Published by: Arcen Games
  • Platform: Windows, MacOSX and Linux
  • Business Model: Base Game + Expansion DLC
  • Copy Gifted by a Friend
Overall Gameplay Thoughts
Skyward Collapse is a combination of turn-based strategy and god game elements. Where your goal is to keep two factions in a balanced war while building up the continent they exist on. If one side takes out the other, it's game over. The trick to accomplishing balance is that you have no direct control over the faction's actions, there are independent factions and cataclysmic events that can change the landscape.

You don’t have direct control over the units in the game but you can influence each faction and their actions. Each turn you can create land tiles, military/resource buildings and semi-direct the flow of the game. While you might think "just turtle/don’t build units and you’ll achieve easy balance", well, Skyward Collapse won't let you. You have to achieve certain point goals every X turns or you'll fail the game. And you only get points through units/buildings being destroyed. Expect units and buildings to die. A lot. You’ll need to keep producing more buildings and units for each side to kill. Keeping this balanced is exceptionally tricky, especially when chaotic forces intervene. Just so you know, you do have some direct actions you can take such as smiting buildings or putting down a way point that the faction may or may not respond to. So you’re not completely helpless.

Learning Curve
The game has a fairly difficult learning curve to it, though it’s not TOO dense. There is a tutorial which can introduce you into the game and give you a good idea of what’s what. But you’ll have to figure out several tech trees, which buildings are important and what units are most effective towards your goals. Additionally, each faction has a distinctive personality with their strengths and weaknesses to understand. The UI is great with displaying information but the amount of information can be overwhelming at times. The game itself can be chaotic with the neutral factions spawning their units and Woes creating widely variable situations (think plagues or earthquakes splitting the lands). There is a LOT of content in this game and learning it will take a decent amount of time. You’ll be playing a few maps to really get your head around it.

PC Settings & Multiplayer
V-Sync, resolutions, audio sliders and mouse options (edge-scrolling, speed, etc) are here. There isn’t any important settings missing. Skyward Collapse is very stable, having no visible bugs or crashing problems. The Cooperative aspect in this game is ok but it feels a bit bare-boned. All your friend(s) can do is be a creator and try to keep things in balance with you. The soundtrack has a mellow piano and guitar setup, keeping you relaxed even in the most intense/frustrating situations you'll often find yourself in. While it isn't the most distinctive of the soundtracks Pablo Vega has made, it works very well for this game.

Additionally, you have a lot of options to change how easy or difficult the game can be. You can increase how Woe's (special events) impact the game, how stringent the score requirement per round will be and how many turns you must survive in order to succeed.

Final Thoughts
Skyward Sword is one of Arcen's more intriguing and, in my opinion, well executed experiments. The combination of god game & turn based strategy works very well. I really enjoyed building up cities and seeing armies fighting it out while I watched from above. The flow of the game will swing one way to the next as events happen, really giving me that “one more turn” craving. While not having direct control made me feel a bit passive or understandably frustrated when things go horribly wrong, it’s still a lot of fun. You should also pick up the DLC for the complete experience as it gives you another mechanic to win the game and the Japanese faction to really spices things up. Skyward Collapse is a definite recommendation from me.

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18 of 22 people (82%) found this review helpful
Recommended
33.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 23, 2014
I really like this game for it's somehow chaotic gameplay which makes it unique in the strategy genre. It is turn based and best comparable to a very complex board game. This is also how it is presented.
You as a player have limited and mostly indirect control over what happens. There are many random variables. But the offered possibility space of what to do to react on the events is strikingly huge. Every time I start a new round I find something new to try out.
It has its lengthy parts and I think the 60 rounds variant is much more enjoyable than the standard of 90 rounds per match.
I think the suspense in this game is great. For the first 90% of the game you have to do careful adjustments to keep your civilizations alive. But when it becomes obvious that you are about to win it's up to you to wreak as much havoc as possible. As you only get points for destroyed buildings and units. This is immensely satisfying.
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16 of 20 people (80%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
8.1 hrs on record
Posted: January 5, 2015
It's an interesting premise; I rushed to it because I missed playing god games. Unfortunately, it doesn't manage to be a very good god game, leaning more towards the TBS side, and it's not a great TBS either. If you're anything like me, you'll probably love it for the first 20 rounds or so; then your interest will fall more and more. By turn 70 I just wanted it to be over.

Some have said that the main problem is a lack of challenge: once you figure out how to play it, that's it. But if that was the case, you could just get more bandits and woes. (In fact, I managed to lose it once, and that didn't make it much more interesting.) In my opinion the problem lies elsewhere: it gets repetitive, and it feels pointless. In a god game, you usually have a “project” in your head, something you want to do; in an RTS or TBS, you're constantly under pressure by the opponent(s). Here neither thing happens: no use having a project because you have very little control over what will get destroyed, and also because there is simply not that much you can do; and the pressure simply isn't there either, since winning is “score X points and make sure both factions survive” — once you reach the required score and have one well-fortified town of each faction safely away from the conflict areas, it's an annoying game of attrition.

Again, it's a very interesting premise, and I'll keep an eye on it — it has a lot of potential to be fixed in an expansion or sequel. But as it currently stands, I don't think it works.
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16 of 21 people (76%) found this review helpful
Recommended
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 29, 2014
In Starcraft Broodwar, I use to like to make custom maps with two AIs fighting each other, and a swarm of player controlled battle cruisers to try and balance the two. This game is kind of like that, but a bit more complex. Don't be decieved by the sprite graphics and simple animations, this game gets deep.
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22 of 32 people (69%) found this review helpful
Recommended
3.8 hrs on record
Posted: September 8, 2013
Probably one of the more strict-definition "God" games out there, in that you're the kind of deity who a) exists and b) does what he can for his people but c) can't order them to do jack-♥♥♥♥ because Free Will.

That said? This is a fantastic concept and I actually love it. You manage a pair of nations (and I believe a third with the recent DLC?) turn by turn, with equal moves apiece, reshaping the world and controlling the resources of each side. Afterwards, every living player from those factions makes their moves, and you hope you've done enough to keep them both safe (from roaming bandits, one another, and horrible curses known as Woes). The game's not so easily solved, though, due to the random factors that'll shake things up. Tiles appear after every turn to fill in gaps in the floating world you manage, and again, bandits/Woes.

I don't know how long I'll stick with this after finishing a few games? But it's totally a fantastic title and the recent overhaul patch makes me wonder if more tweaks like that might hook me further. I would love for this to be the birth of a new strategy niche.
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16 of 21 people (76%) found this review helpful
Recommended
4.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 2, 2013
I really like the idea of playing two factions against each other and having to make sure that neither one of them wipes the other one out, but something about it didn't completely click with me. As with most Arcen games, I'm glad I tried it and played through an entire session of it from start to finish, because it's interesting and not the kind of thing you usually see, but I don't think this will be one of the ones I'll end up going back to repeatedly for weeks/months/years. I'm happy they keep trying out whatever crazy ideas they come up with though.
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46 of 77 people (60%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
3.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 23, 2013
Have you known a Grandparent or Aunt/Uncle who's house you've been to so many times you can't count. When you're forced to visit them you end up playing board games alone in their cluttered back room. You always find yourself bored. Even though the room is cluttered your relative never takes the time to show you anything they have. When you ask they just shrug you off. Then one day, they pass on, and the family jumps in and starts dividing all the stuff they had in their house and you learn they had a lot of cool stuff. Actually there was a lot to learn and explore, but the place was so cluttered, and your relative never explained much of what they collected.

That's the best way I can describe Skyward Collapse. The single tutorial level gives you a limited/basic understanding of what it's trying to accomplish then sets you out into the world to play god. You find yourself with 2 civilizations, with slightly varied dependencies, different unit types with their own pros and cons, a cluttered interface, and you have to play them both at the same time and keep them from killing each other while they attempt to kill each other.

IMO a tutorial that perhaps took a few levels to complete would have helped this game out a lot. There's no hand holding here and usually I don't like that type of design, but in Skyward Collapse it could have been a refreshing boost in understanding the complex systems in place here.

Also, the building icons are cluttered. Yes, they are divided up into categories, but I still found myself lost a lot of the time. The dependencies between buildings aren't very well explained and I kept backtracking to understand what I did wrong. I played the tutorial level about 5 times. There's just not enough clean design or helpful tutorials to get the average player involved.

I'm also, not a fan of playing against myself. Well, balancing against myself really. You have to build civilizations that will ultimately destroy each other, but you need to build them in ways they complement their destructive potentials into an almost deadlock.

That does sound like a great idea, but honestly it's just a bad execution. I really think this game would have benefited from a little TLC on the GUI and a few extra tutorial levels that would walk you through certain aspects one at a time. The way Skyward Collapse is presented you end up feeling like you're playing a board game, alone, in your Grandmothers' clutter back room.
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9 of 9 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
70.0 hrs on record
Posted: May 3, 2015
Skyward Collapse is a game that requires some dedication and time investment to really learn it. You have to forgive the fact that there is no animation at all - characters slide around the world like pieces on a board game. And I'm going to say right up front to buy this game with the Nihon no Mura expansion. It's only a little extra for it, and you won't want to be without the Super Smite ability that comes with it.

As a god-like being, you command two factions of human civilization, which can be either Greek, Norse, or (with the expansion) Japanese. Each has unique skills, monsters, and gods whose powers can be used against one another by building up their towns and earning supplies.

Here's the catch: you're on both teams. You can't allow one to completely destroy the other. And you can't just not let them fight, because you need to earn points to make score requirements every so many rounds. So, you have to find ways to keep them balanced - if one side starts overwhelming the other, you'll have to concoct strategies to even the odds. This can get quite hectic, especially considering all the random elements the game tosses at you - such as the woes that create game-changing conditions, the rogue bandits that pop up every so often, and what to do if a character attains such high stats that they become practically unstoppable.

Once you get the hang of it, you will likely never be in any real danger of losing. But the game is fully-customizable. You can change any number of elements to make it as hard or as easy as you'd like. Going for the achievements is a good way to learn the game's rules and mechanics and to give you concrete goals to shoot for.

Rating: 3.5/5
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14 of 19 people (74%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: July 25, 2015
I really wanted to like this game, but in the end I saw what many others ended up seeing. While the game sounds great, it falls utterly short. This is a game that should have been sent back to the drawing board like Hellraid was. Why? Because it's BORING.

In Skyward Collapse you get to play as the ultimate ruler of everything. You build cities for two opposing sides, trying to protect them from themselves as well as bandits and natural disasters. You can keep your world thriving by consistently making new cities, consistently placing down gods or special units to turn the balance towards a losing side to re-instate "balance", which is the key in this game. Then you watch your actions have effects as you hit "end turn". And then you do it again, and again, and again, and again. No variety, no excitement. Just the same strategies again. Place some buildings, end turn. Place special units. End turn. Etc. The game was honesty better on paper than it is in-game.

I give it a 3/10. Now it's not buggy in any way, so that's a pro, but that's all it really has going for it. It's too boring, and games are suppoed to be fun. This doesn't fit the bill, avoid it, save your money.
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22 of 35 people (63%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
1.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 25, 2013
a game that i really want to work for me. the idea is fresh and premise sounds interesting. look and feel seems quite ok on screenshots and videos.

the problem is, it does not actually come together all that well. tutorial will give you an idea how this all works but does not explain it in enough detail. gameplay feels slow and frankly quite boring. actual games are fairly short and do not lend well to somehow stat-heavy nature of everything. multiplayer is only local/ip so there is no real community for mp either.

i would not recommend it unless you definitely know what you are getting into.
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