You are a God! You are master and ruler of a loyal nation. You have unimaginable powers at your disposal. You have claimed this world as yours. But there are others who stand in your way. You must defeat and destroy these pretenders. Only then can you ascend to godhood and become the new Pantokrator.
User reviews:
Very Positive (12 reviews) - 100% of the 12 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Very Positive (858 reviews) - 91% of the 858 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Dec 5, 2013

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Recent updates View all (17)

October 10

Dominions 4.27

This update has a bunch of modding improvements, mainly raising some modding limits so that more modded nations can be enabled at once. The new version has been tested with the help of nationgen and a mod creating 75 random nations works fine now. There are also the usual general improvements and bug fixes as well as some tweaks to the AI.


  • Domes and some other enchantments are no longer visible in battles
  • Communion single target spells didn't affect non commander slaves
  • Strength enchantment bonus from some spells now printed in stats
  • Battle log fix for protective force
  • Therodos Kourete didn't spawn under ally's control
  • Stream of Life now causes internal damage
  • Faster setting up start positions for games with huge number of players
  • Slothpower didn't work correctly
  • Description fixes
  • Event fixes
  • Stat fixes

  • AI don't cast sea globals when there are too few sea provinces
  • Spell AI improvements

  • Increased max number of descriptions with about 2000
  • Increased max number of events 4000 -> 5000
  • Increased max number of magic abilities with 2000
  • Max nation number increased 199 -> 249
  • Mod parsing no longer sees e.g. #berserker as #bers
  • #clearrec also clears all terrain dependent recruitment for a nation
  • New commands #landrec and #landcom for recruitment in all overwater forts for uw-nations

23 comments Read more

July 21

Dominions 4.26

This is mostly an AI & UI patch. Most of the work has gone into improving the late game behavior of the AI. It should now be able to utilize its resources more efficiently and be more likely to get to a position where it can cast high level rituals. There has also been some improvements to the user interface, like more 'goto province' buttons on messages, shift click support in more places and more keyboard shortcuts.


  • God & nation popup in global enchantment screen
  • Darkvision from throne bless was counted twice
  • Fixed some bonuses when viewing att/def details
  • Goto province for scout attacked messages
  • Goto province for more ritual messages
  • ctrl+s to view saved orders (army setup screen)
  • Message for fort construction completed
  • Shift transfers 5 gems at a time
  • Keyboard shortcuts f/a/w/e/... to transfer gems to commander
  • Gem transfer box can be closed by Return as well
  • Shift changes PD 5 steps at a time
  • +/- can also be used to change PD
  • Ice Strike now causes slashing damage
  • Transformation & feeblemind/mindless fix
  • Strands of Arcane Power cannot be cast by mindless casters
  • Blind & losteye fix
  • Stat & cost fixes
  • Typos fixed

  • Be less willing to do suicidal attacks
  • Recruitment improvements
  • Learned to cast a few more type of rituals
  • Forge item choice improvements
  • Improved magic item distribution
  • Dedicated ritualist for improved high level ritual casting
  • Empowerment tweaks
  • Improved preaching behavior
  • Spell AI no longer targets destruction/rust at units with only natural protection

  • Multiple same type of event effects didn't work
  • Removed false warning for #flagland

29 comments Read more

About This Game

You are a God! You are master and ruler of a loyal nation. You have unimaginable powers at your disposal. You have claimed this world as yours. But there are others who stand in your way. You must defeat and destroy these pretenders. Only then can you ascend to godhood and become the new Pantokrator.

In Dominions you take control of a powerful being that rules a nation and aspires to godhood. The type of Pretender Gods can vary from magically powerful arch mages to huge titans or large monuments. The pretender gods have different strengths dependent on what kind of god you choose and what nation you play.

When you start the game you decide what kind of god you are and how your Dominion affects your lands and followers. It is an expression of your divine might and the faith of your followers. If your dominion dies, so do you. Your dominion also inspires your sacred warriors and gives them powers derived from your dominion.

In order to win and become the one true god you have to defeat your enemies one of three different ways: conquer their lands, extinguish their dominion or claim the Thrones of Ascension.

In Dominions 4 you can also play team games where one of the players take the role of supreme god, and the other members of the team are his servants and loyal subjects. The lesser gods rule their nations, but you all share the dominion of the supreme god.

Dominions is set in a fantasy world that draws inspiration from historical nations, cultures and myths. You will not encounter the elves of conventional fantasy in this game. Instead you might lead a nation of vanir from old norse myth. Aztecs, romans, israelites, greeks, shona and kievian rus are just a few of the inspirational sources of the game.

The first Dominions game was released in 2002 and was well received by strategy gamers. Since then Dominions has been much refined and Dominions series is still actively played making it one of the longest running 4x turn based strategy games.

Dominions 4 is also a highly moddable game. You can create your own monsters, spells and entire nations. Since Dominions 3 there has been a vivid modding community and Dominions 4 will enhance this capability even further.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows XP/Vista/7
    • Processor: 1 GHz
    • Memory: 1024 MB RAM
    • Storage: 500 MB available space
    • OS: 10.3 or later
    • Processor: 1 GHz
    • Memory: 1024 MB RAM
    • Storage: 500 MB available space
    • OS: any 32 or 64-bit distro
    • Processor: 1 GHz
    • Memory: 1024 MB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL and libSDL1.2
    • Storage: 500 MB available space
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Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
756.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 23
Possibly the best game you've never heard of.

Steam kept recommending this game to me based on other games I played, and for a long time I ignored it because I expected better graphics from a game this expensive. Then it went on sale one day and I took the plunge, and I haven't looked back since.

Dominions 4 is a turn-based strategy game about warring nations each ruled by a mythological entity (titan, monster, wizard, etc) that is trying to become a god. In the most commonly played game mode, this is accomplished by capturing a certain number of Thrones which are scattered around the map. In addition to granting victory points, each throne also gives some kind of bonus to your nation when you claim it.

There are dozens of different nations to choose from, and while the diversity keeps things interesting, balance seems to have unfortunately been a secondary consideration, and some nations are really better than others. Once a nation is chosen, the next step is to create your pretender, the previously mentioned creature that's trying to become a god. Each nation has a dozen or more options to choose from that fit that nation's theme. So nations with a Norse theme can chooses pretenders like frost giants or giant serpents, while Greco-Roman nations get a variety of different titans and monsters like the Manticore. Each pretender is also highly customizable, and how you build your pretender can have an enormous impact on how you play the game.

Once the game actually starts, turns consist of recruiting units from the territories you control and sending them out to conquer more territory. Which sounds simple, and even seems simple when you first start playing. But soon you realize there's a TON of strategic depth to this game. When you tell your units to attack a province, you don't control the battle directly. Instead, you issue the orders that you want your units to follow during the battle before the battle starts. So you might tell your frontline sword-and-shield infantry to take up a line formation at the front of the battlefield, hold position for the first two turns of combat, and then advance on the enemy, while your archers stay behind with orders to fire on any flying enemies that appear, for example.

You also recruit mages to perform your research and cast all your spells. There are literally hundreds of spells to research, which creates untold opportunities for play and counterplay -- like I said, strategic depth. Again, balance doesn't seem to have been a primary focus here, and the fact is that many spells are rarely if ever actually used in competitive games, but it's always interesting to encounter spells you haven't seen before, or familiar spells used in new ways.

Bottom line: if you're a fan of complex turn-based strategy games and don't mind a steep learning curve, Dominions is as good as it gets. I started out playing single player exclusively, which is fine if that's what you're into or just looking to learn the ropes, but multiplayer is where this game really shines in my opinion. I would be remiss if I didn't point out the game's flaws as well, which include the general lack of balance I've mentioned before, the frankly unimpressive graphics, and a UI that often leaves much to be desired. That said, the good outweighs the bad here, and while the normal price point might be a little high given the lack of polish, I highly recommend grabbing this game when it's on sale.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
32.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 21
Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 + Hearts of Iron 2.
Massive Manual, no trifle matter.
Morale, production, campaigning, transport, order, fertility, temperature, research, casting, summoning...
4x for the fantasy geeks.
Favorite game right now. So solid. Haven't even started multiplayer yet.
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2 of 8 people (25%) found this review helpful
9 people found this review funny
32.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 8
I like this game.
This good game.
I give game good review.
You read review.
You go look at other review to learn why this good game.
You laugh.
You buy.
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1 of 6 people (17%) found this review helpful
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
350 of 383 people (91%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
230.5 hrs on record
Posted: December 5, 2013
I'm no Dominions veteran. I learned about Dom3 just a week before Dom4 came out but what I learned about it in that time was enough to buy this game for 30 euros on bloody Desura. And that was 1st time in years when I bought a game outside of Steam.

Are you getting bored by your 10th Crusader Kings' world conquest?
Have you conquered whole Europe as Palatinate in EU4 ironmode?
You wish Rome 2 was less graphic and actually some content?

Then Dominions 4 is clearly a game for you.

You can tell it's 10 years of constant development. With 70 different factions, thousands creatures and spells ou guys are in for a treat!

Single player and AI leave much to be desired but they are just a training ground for great multiplayer experience. There are few more gratifying things than fighting seasoned veterans of this title. Especially since community is very helpful and welcoming allowing you to survive learning curve with just a few broken limbs.

Dominions 4 multiplayer is like a chess. If chess had 3.000 diferent units instead of 7 and could be played with few dozens people.
And was cool.
And had dragons.
And ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥s of spells.

If you are into all that just buy it. It has best $/content ratio you can find.
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193 of 212 people (91%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
203.2 hrs on record
Posted: June 3, 2014
This game is too close to perfect 4x of my dreams, so I hardly will be objective in this case. I think, I will stick to "good/bad" parts instead, to show what is there.

So, my pros:

- Game is complex. Scalable complex. You can blindly research everything, and throw masses of your troops to win; or you can tinker with initial placement and orders; or you can plan anything - from right artifacts equipped to expert armies assembled - everything will work in single player... for some extent, of course. (Multiplayer requires good knowledge of game, so it will be complex by default).

- Game is vast and diverse. I cannot remember another strategy with at least 4 significantly different races to play (and no, 3 units and 2 advancements doesn't count as "significant"). Dominions 4 have dozens of races, and most of them requires different approach. Sometimes vastly different. There are hundreds of researcheable spells - and it's real, significant spells, not another "Fireball III" type of things. There are dozens of craftable artifacts too - from simple helmets and boots to unique Holy Arc or Staff of Mages that can be only one per game. And there are whole lot of magic sites! And random events too! You got the picture.

- It have planned orders, and what more important - turn-based AI-controlled battles with initial order queue! I think, it's most realistic turn-based scenario: in real battles it's local commanders who matters, not warlord - after initial plan developed, of course.

And now contras:

- Graphics. Poor pixellated graphics from 90s. I still believe that good pixel artist could vastly improve visuals here - but, well, I am not the author, and forums thinks that graphics not matters. Oh, well.

- Interface. It greatly improved since first installation, but still can be very unintuitive here and there. And many commands accessible only via hotkeys. And no filters and sorting for statistics. And not very elaborating reports for everything that are not battles... Oh, well, it definitely could be much better.

- No diplomacy. No pacts, trades, unions or anything. Last part have "minions" system, but it not matters much for single-player, given you AI-controlled armies - and that's all. I think, MP-games more affected by that, but I am not a big fan of multiplayer.

- Limited exploration. You can see whole map right from the beginning. Of course, you cannot see province details, enemy armies, and all magic sites still must be searched individually - but still, in my dreams it could be better!

- Realms-based gameplay. I like to be free, with vast territories, journeys to foreign places and founding cities where I need them. Well, not that game, obviously.

But regardless of described flaws, game remains one of most big, and complex, and elaborate 4X-strategy on market. I love it. Strongly recommended.
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158 of 170 people (93%) found this review helpful
32.5 hrs on record
Posted: December 5, 2013
This is, no kidding, the deepest strategy game you may ever buy on Steam. The manual - and yes, you will absolutely need to read the manual old school style - is 295 pages, with the tutorial being about 24 pages of text and images. It's a complex, fiddly game, with a very dedicated community of players. If you can get a good group together, multiplayer is fantastic.

I will warn you that the game's UI is obtuse as Hell and the graphics will really put your dedication to "gameplay over graphics" to the test. If you've never played a Dominions game, then be prepared to go down the rabbit hole of strategy.
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135 of 141 people (96%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
74.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 14, 2015
I love strategy games. LOVE THEM. My favourites from the last twenty years include (in order) Age of Wonders III, Zeus: Master of Olympus, Crusader Kings II, Seven Kingdoms II, and Warlords III. Strategy fans will know that that's a fairly ecclectic mix of strategy sub-genres. Well, three days after purchasing Dominions 4 I can safely say that it has a place somewhere near the top of my list. I can't stop playing this game.

I'd heard whispers about the Dominions series down through the years. Legend had it that it was the most hardcore of the hardcore. In all honesty its reputation was rather intimidating. The ancient sages were right: I was baffled for my first three games. However, don't think that it's a project to merely get into Dominions 4. It really isn't. The appropriate phrase is, "easy to learn, difficult to master." That's Dominions 4.

The supreme god who brought order to the universe has disappeared, leaving it to a bunch of pretender gods to fight it out for His former position. You are one of those pretenders. Your first decisions will include what faction you want to control, which age of time you wish to play in, what physical form you'll take in the world, and how your influence will impact the lands under your dominion. The depth behind these choices alone is awesome.

Once you've chosen one of the many pre-made maps (or generated a random one) and have customised the scenario settings to your liking, it's time to conquer the world one province at a time until you've claimed the required number of Thrones of Ascension. Though even the victory condition is customisable.

In the process of doing this you'll command mighty armies, raise glorious heroes, spread the truth of your holy word, cast powerful spells, quell uprisings, contend with the fickle hand of fate in the form of random events, forge magic items, manage the economics of your realm, and a whole load more. This truly is one of those games that makes it impossible for you to keep track of time while you're playing. You may think that the graphics are simplistic (and they are), but trust me, after five minutes I don't see pixels anymore. All I see are my Atlanteans (or "Atlantians" as these developers have it) emerging from the ocean to crush all before them. I can't remember the last game I played that was so immersive. Your expectations would be better adjusted by considering Dominions 4 a board game with animated battles.

One thing that made me hesitate to buy the game were the number of reviews (positive ones) that cast a negative light on the single-player. This concerned me since I never have any interest in multiplayer whatsoever and only buy games for solo play. I'm very glad I decided to take a risk because the AI is a worthy opponent even on "Normal" difficulty. Looking through the updates I can see that a lot of work has been done on the AI since the time of release which probably accounts for the earliest reviews complaining about it and my experience towards the end of 2015 being totally different.

By this point in my review you'll probably already know whether or not this is the game for you, but let me share some of the cool elements in Dominions 4. You can rename not only your pretender god, but also any of your commanders. The factions in the game (there's loads of them) are all totally unique and change depending on the age you choose to play in. Those factions are all based on mythology from around our world, meaning you can live out your Arthurian or Atlantean fantasies (you have them too, right?) Your heroes can get wounded, which may involve losing one or more limbs. Characters will age and can weaken as they get older before finally dying, however some species live longer than others. The combat is detailed to the point that each unit not only has specified methods of attack, but does particular types of damage too. You can fight on the ocean floor, and some factions are aquatic. The music is wonderful.

In conclusion, Dominions 4 is one of those games that you come away from with a thousand hilarious and tragic tales to tell. It's perfect for emergent storytelling. In terms of being a strategy game, yes it's highly complicated and very deep, but it doesn't put a brick wall in front of you. With each game you play you'll utilise the latest thing you've learned until at last you understand the dynamics in play. This discovery process doesn't make you groan at the prospect of facing it; it excites you and makes you want to learn more. You'll be thinking about potential strategies as you lie in bed at night. The fact that the entire Dominions series is created by just two guys (under the company name "Illwinter Game Design") makes all the great aspects of the game even more amazing.

On a final note: I've ordered the physical manual available from the game's website. Doing such a thing is unheard of for me, but Dominions 4 is so good it's worth it.
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147 of 158 people (93%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
211.4 hrs on record
Posted: September 24, 2014
If i had to describe Dominions 4 to someone who has never played before, i would for sure use dangerous words as Risk, Civilization and Heroes of Might & Magic. Among the turn-based heroic fantasy strategy games (sorry), Dominions is the ugly guy that no one is talking to. If you dare to speak to him he'll give you access to an amazing world. But not before 3 quests:

- Overcome ugliness: Dominions 4 is ugly, the screenshots dont lie! Units are 2D sprites, poorly animated and there's a good reason for that: content. I dont wanna go into numbers but with so many units, spells, magic items.. you can't expect a shadered 3D model reflecting the sun through tree leafs. Try to imagine the map as a a real map someone just scrolled in front of you asking: how are we going to make those guys believe in you? About the battles: it's somehow poorly animated (but everything is visible i.e units/spells/damage) but i can't find the words to express how i felt in front of my first 300vs300 battle, spells going on from both side, oh man that was awesome.

- Provide a proof of imagination. What is going on in Dominions 4 is the rise&fall of your God in a world where Gods are in competition with each other. This is your story and it's even more funny if you can put yourself into it. There is a large background (descriptions for each races, heroes, units...) to help you with this.

- Get ready for complexity. This game is deep, really deep. The learning curve is slow & long but not frustrating. You'll be amazed how detailed things are. Last game my god got killed cause one of my sorcerer casted an armor spells which explode on death, guess who took the blast? Not mentioning my 1 armed/1eyed Heroic centurion commanding the largest part of the empire's army. The interface is strange, but i can't say it's bad cause i got used to it after a couple of hours, and you can play with the mouse only. There's also a huge 400 page manual (27 pages for tutorial) to explain everything.

Heavily recommended

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102 of 104 people (98%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
27.3 hrs on record
Posted: January 8, 2015
I was on the fence about whether to get this game for awhile, partly because of the price and partly because of quality concerns, since obviously a lot of time wasn't spent on making the game graphically pretty. I purchased the game on sale, but after having played it I would recommend it even for full price to anyone who's looking for a deep, complex strategy game.

Dominions 4 plays like a highly advanced fantasy version of Civilization or similar turn-based games. That's not to say that it's super difficult to play - the basic mechanics are pretty simple once you get the hang of the somewhat odd control scheme where LMB is used for most things where you'd normally expect to use RMB (RMB is always used to get more info on something, instead of giving orders). I was able to feel somewhat competent without any tutorials, having only watched some brief gameplay on YouTube. However the game reveals layer after layer of complexity once you really start getting into it, and it definitely follows the "easy to play, hard to master" philosophy. There will be a learning curve once you get beyond the basics - the manual is almost 400 pages long.

So, what can you do in this game that makes it worth the time instead of just playing a Civilization?
* Choose a faction and a pretender god as its leader from just about any mythology and creature you can think of. Dragons, wizards, lizard men, frost giants, weird fungus monsters, sea serpents, cthulu, you name it.
* Recruit a general for every one of your armies, with his own name (given by you), stats, equipment, and experience.
* Separate your armies into formations and give them orders to follow in battle (you still don't need to micromanage the battles themselves; they play out between turns)
* Sacrifice virgins to your blood god and use the power to summon demons or forge magical artifacts.
* Spread your icy dominion to freeze over rivers so your armies can cross it.
* Call forth an army of undead and march it into the sea to surprise your enemy or control undersea territory.
* Cast a spell to plunge the entire world into utter darkness.
* March huge armies over all the land, then suddenly lose the game because no one believes in your god anymore (yeah, that happened to me).

So if you can get past the graphics (yeah, I know, it takes a lot to get past the graphics), you'll be rewarded with a rich, cerebral, highly replayable game in Dominions 4.
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Recently Posted
82.4 hrs
Posted: October 27
This series only gets better with each installment, and this game still gets updates 3 years later. I've played hundreds of hours on this series over the last 10-12 years and I STILL don't know everything there is to know in this universe. The depth is incredible, but the basics are so easy to learn that you can explore the expansive depths of strategic options at your own pace and without feeling like you're missing out by not already knowing it all.

Limitless undead hordes, ice giants decked out in magical gear, bird people, and a dozen or more other nations... add countless options for magic, your god's dominion, and plenty of rules options, and you've got a game that you can play for years without getting bored. Includes hotseat multiplayer!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
70.9 hrs
Posted: October 26
This is my first review so if it seems a bit messy, I apologize.

I've played this game for about 100 hours now and I still don't know what I'm doing. I have played almost all the Civ games, Total war games and a scattering of other 4X games.

If you like turn based strategy games set in a fantasy setting, that are hard to learn and harder to master then this is a game for you. :)
Start out modest with some small armies and a handfull of spells for your mages, and as you progress you get bigger armies, summoning spells, huge battlefield wide spells and rituals that can affect the whole world.
It may not look like much, as my friends keep telling me. But the diversity of ways to play, and the mechanics that support it is worth the modest cost of the game in my opinion :)
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918.8 hrs
Posted: October 16
One of the most complex, deepest, and most satisfying strategy/RPG games I've ever played.

Here's a brief history of what I have played in the same genre:
- Heroes of Might and Magic series starting from 3
- Fall From Heaven 1 and 2 mods and various modmods made for Civ 4 (recommended)
- Fallen Enchantress
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46.1 hrs
Posted: October 16
Very good and intresting turned based strategy. Do not let the simple graphics style fool you, the game is full of detail and vast in its size.
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91.7 hrs
Posted: October 7
Dominions 4: Thrones of Ascension is one of the greatest 4x strategy games I've ever played. There's nothing more satisfying than watching massive armies of your mindless slave-I mean, devout and courageous followers, meeting apostates on the field of battle to fight in your name. There's a lot to learn as well, both in game mechanics and strategies to the lore of the countless numbers of nations you can play as. It's not pretty, but you learn to love the little sprites after a while. After you get bored of fighting against AI, you can always play a few games with people online, LAN, or even set up a hotseat game at home. I say just go for it! Jump into the rich and fantastic mythological world that is Dominions, and make some new and interesting friends along the way. We don't bite. :D
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85.8 hrs
Posted: October 3
Much fun, Many details, always the stressful
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