Become the world’s first superpower and command the most incredible and vast war machine of the Ancient world. Dominate the enemies of your glorious empire by military, economic and political means.
EDIT 2014-08-02 : 5
After 14 patches, some issues have been fixed or are less annoying.
CA added 4 seasons mechanic with CiG and then add it to TW:R2
Performance have been optimized, still some issue but far better than after release
CA removed the "capture the flag", should have create a system similar to NTW3 multiplayer
CA rework the transport fleet vs Naval fleet, a bit more balanced now even if not fully satisfying.
CA release the Assembly Kit, but still incomplete
CA find an agreement with Wwise to use its tool to allow music modding
Poor diplomacy, still not enhanced
Still no issue for walls, limited to province capital
Still no campaign nor battle map tool
To conclude, a good game but not a great game.
Most issue come from game design now and I doubt they will be fixed (too much work, too costly for CA).
PREVIOUS REVIEW : 3
Battle AI having a slightly better level than in S2TW
Line of Sight System for battles
Combined air-sea battles
very bad optimization, bad performances (lag, etc.) even with high end computer
1 army = 1 general : problem to reinforce army with new troops
1 army = 1 general : didn't really suppress the "unit spam" problem, only limit it. A bad solution to a real problem.
impossible to exchange region, even during peace negociations
1 turn per year system destroy immersion, it look like if time is "suspended", no seasons in campaign
User interface not always easy to handle, sometime quite confusing
Only provincial capitals having walls, probably to avoid the "siege feast", but now we have "city attack feast", certainly not better.
Army can destroy a fleet... with transport ships
no AI improvement for more than a decade. Even the original ROME seemed to have better AI. I never thought AI could get any worse than ROME. No point in playing the game when there is no AI. Thanks to bad coding the interface causes extreme stutter/freezing even on lowest detail, making the game unplayable. Even if there was no stutter/freezing, i wouldnt be playing this game anyway. i hate dumbed-down game mechanics!
1) "Capture the flag" mode is just plain stupidity - whichever developer came up with that should be fired and bannned from ever developing a line of code again...he doesnt know what TW is...
2) battles are a horrific experience overall...all the "magic" of actually seeing the micro-engagements when 2 units colided are gone...if you try, you will probably miss the battle as it will be over that fast...i.e. 2 armies of +3,000 men each were over and done in about 6 minutes...this is NOT what Total War is about...any strategy or tactics are gone; phalanxes dont maintain formation, even against a unit of "mob"...there's no command to "guard" or "stand ground"...typically every battle ends up being a complete mosh pit, over in under 3 minutes...units move too fast (never had my "artillery" fire more than 2 rounds before the lines meet...
3) AI is a joke...i won a battle with zero casualties (YES, ZERO!) against 2,400 men...all killed/routed with ballistas and a line of 4 units of archers (playing as Macedon). I was outnumbered and they simply wouldnt charge...just stood there being killed until they routed.
4) Diplomacy sucks...you basically cannot have a decent treasury or the smallest faction will ask for at least 10% to even CONSIDER negotiating...
5) The star of the show (Rome) appears to be the AI's worst enemy...they get rolled over every time by whomever comes their way...never even seen them getting legionaires out - unless i played as Rome...you would expect them to be realistic when handled by AI and start expanding - talk about falling short on expectations...
6) The new settlement management piece is actually good...though squalor feels like it was decided with a coin flip! every building gives squalor!!! even when the populous are complaining about lack of food, if you expand your fishery or cattle ranching, you get squalor!! come on CA, you can do better than that...
7) Agents might as well not exist (AI rarely uses them)
Overall, BIG disappointment
The game is interesting, but not much more than that.
I've played most former games and have enjoyed hundreds of hours playing them.
This release was first of all a BETA, it should not have been released in the state that it was.
The in game campaign AI is terrible, even in hard/ very hard modes. It isn't aggressive, it's not challenging, it bankrupts/ starves itself to death making a conquest very easy, and it makes ridiculous decisions towards the player and other npc factions. The diplomacy is less advanced than Medieval 2 for example.
The lag (along with a plethora of other bugs) still exists even after three extensive updates. Mind you i bought a new machine JUST for this release, with a setup where I should be able to max it, but cant even play on Ultra graphics.
There are too many flaws to point out quite frankly; but suffice to say that this game does not deserve more than a 5 rating.
I will give them this, however, the game "LOOKS" great, but even there not even close to the "screenshots" presented in the pre release PR campaign.
+(-)The graphics are awesome, you just have to find a way, to enable them :P
-The AI is very stupid, the sieges are ridicolous
+Historically accurate troops: 95% except dogs, warhounds etc
+Creative army names, garisson armies
-Constant lag in sieges
-Random campaign map rotation (very scary)
+creative upgrade of characters, good abilities
-bad capaign map, bad pathfinding, etc
-bad unit icons, and worthless info about them when "displayed" on the troop icons (eg: I still do not know when they are under fire)
+unit camera view is so cool
The game includes many units and good maps. The only problem is, the factions without any add-ons bought can get a bit, well lets say boring.
I am quite disappointed that Sparta was not included in the Vanilla.
However, the battles are thrilling and the units are well detailed+ there aren't really anymore glitches/bugs for me so far :)