Do not get me wrong this game is actually quite fun, but when left with a "would I recommend yes, or no" option I have to go with no. There are some pretty great ideas thrown in, with, as mentioned, very nice character designs and areas. However, it leaves MUCH to be desired.
First off, the thing that really urked me about the game, is that it's not really beginner friendly. I'm not completely new to the RTS genre, but I have been gone from it for a long time, and this game did not even slightly try and help me get back in my groove.
For starters, it has a rock beats rock, paper covers paper, scizzors cut scizzors gameplay. To elaborate, essentailly in most cases Infantry units are good against Infantry and Artillary units good against Artillary. This really annoyed me at first, and so far this has not changed yet and I am about 20 hours into the game. It does have exception, you can get Infantry that beat out Armored units, or Artillery, but in general get used to becoming enraged deep into a game when you try and make a move with your Infantry units to kill the CPU's infantry but then, now out of Action Points, you get killed by their Infantry units.
Also this game, at least when you're a noobie, is harsh on death, to the point it makes it not very fun to go forward with. Some of these ideas I do love, like keeping units that live and losing those that die in battle, but when you're new to the game, have very little in game currency, this can leave a very bitter taste. Also you as a "captain" have energy, that regenerates ONE per hour, each Quest or Mission takes multiple energy points and this can very much damage a newbies experience with the game. Imagine if you will playing 2-3 hours of a new game, getting into it, maybe being offput by it's difficulty or some gameplay mechanics but really interested in trying to do better or get better, but then just simply NOT being able to. This is how I felt during my first hours of the game. No energy, little money to buy new units, and very little idea on how to get a grasp on the game.
The second major flaw with the game is it's pay to play features, which are very blattant in being the only real way to enjoy the game for more than an hour or two a day.
I understand as an artist you gotta make a living too, it may be fun, may be your passion, but you still have bills to pay, food to buy, and other expenses just like the rest of the world. Hell being a full time musician I completely understand you HAVE to be paid for quality products you put hundreds to thousands of hours on, but some games are doing this well, and then some games are just butchering the idea. This game butchers the idea.
This can spark up debate within gamers, FTP is an amazing feature that is just barely getting it's first foot on the ground, with the mainstream anyway, but already having major success. The debate comes when deciding how the artist should make money, and these guys just don't do it well. My opinion on the matter is that a FTP game should have pay to play features that only either the hardcores would enjoy, or features that you can still play the game without, even if completely missing out. I've been persuaded to buy features in FTP games just becasue of how much I enjoy the core game, but THIS game basically makes you have to pay to just play the game, as aforementioned, more than just an hour a two a day.
This is a horrible model, and according to other reviews on Steam, a model for a game that isn't even being updated.
This game is fun, and I've gotten a lot better at it now so this is not just the rants of a newbie, but it could have been so much more.