The year is 878 AD, the embattled English king Alfred the Great has mounted a heroic defence at the battle of Edington, and blunted the Viking invasion. Chastened – but not yet broken – the Norse warlords have settled across Britain. For the first time in nearly 80 years, the land is in a fragile state of peace.

RSS Reviews
10

feillyne says

Agree Disagree

(You can ignore the rating. I always give 10/10 or 5/5 or positive reviews for no real reason. :-P)

Let's echo all other reviewers in a short list:

Cons:
- no religion and its influence
- no real navy or naval fleets
- no tribal factions (Picts for example)
- broken vassal logic, sometimes you can't just vassalise your allies or super friendly factions, you have to break treaties and declare them war first, then offer vassalage, or just conquer them (which is ridiculous and it decreases your diplomatic standing or delays your expansion considerably)
- very monotonous units and technologies, you would expect some more diversity (pretty monocultural or unicultural game doesn't mean it has to be THAT monotonous?), oh they are different (played 3 different factions for quite a long time) yet they are very... uniform to say euphemistically
- did we even get region gifting or trading... back? nope? some more diplomacy options, such as sending insults or threats? declaration of war as leverage when demanding something? (there is only annexation and declaration of friendship here as somewhat new or refreshed "features", and you can liberate as well, all of that is not much; no surprise here really, diplomacy in TW has always been primitive)
- allies and enemies alike can just steamroll through your current villages or once yours villages and then re-recruit or boost their army (not to mention their accidental replenishing if they're lucky or we're slow), or you can comically take their villages depriving them of food supply
- no precise region taxing
- factions do not change their logos/icons or traits/units/techs after being upgraded (Kingdom victory), only a new buff is given, so it is almost nominal
- had to swim to other island just to get market chain? and why are you supposed to swim to another far off island for research building chain? this may be nice way to encourage you to move your butt to go elsewhere but it doesn't really excuse the complete lack of certain general, absolutely necessary chains (we're not talking about uniques here, we are talking about the general market/research chain that somebody may want to get early on)
- mad, imbalanced technologies that consume too large a chunk of food instead of simply improve the recruitment pool refill rate at a lower rate (gamer-penalising logic is almost never good when a better alternative exists)
- (personal preference, not a real con) rather lazy unit cards and building tiles (Attila style is better), they still look much better than Rome II cards/tiles
- overall a lazy job considering the steep price of the game

Pros:
+ army consumes food now
+ atmosphere, mood
+ building options, unit selection, techs/factions on the whole are okay (they simply lack true uniqueness or diversity)
+ unit cards and building tiles seem to be less lazy than the ones in Rome II
+ dynamic steamroll flow (its dark side is mentioned above)
+ we're getting mod support for this, right?

Verdict:
8/10 Gameplay (it is quite enjoyable... then it becomes tedious and grinds to a halt)
4/10 Total War (navy/religion cut out)
3/10 Content
5/10 A Small Game (Final Score)

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