Age of Wonders: Planetfall

Icon - Calendar Released: 6 Aug 2019
Icon - Edited Reviewed: 26 Jul 2021
Platform: PC

Age of wonders planetfall

I've gone through another phase recently of trying to like 4X games. It's a pretty varied genre on the whole, but I often find there's an issue with each game I can't get past. Usually it's that there's just too much to keep track of and they're too complicated, or too long. AoW Planetfall seems to be in a pretty good middle ground there because it's _mostly_ all about the military. There's not a lot of questing, and very little diplomacy past being able to buy units from other factions. It's still a little slow, but overall I really enjoyed it.

Pros

  • It's Sci-Fi!
  • Beautiful landscapes and art style
  • Combat is much better than Endless Legend (where you couldn't even control your units directly)
  • There are separate research trees for military and social
  • You can mod units
  • There are hero units with their own names, skill trees and gear
  • Decent background music
  • Auto and manual battle options
  • Lots of unit types (like over a hundred)
  • You can click on enemy units to see everything about them; stats, weapons, abilities etc
  • It's military focused (only money and research, nothing like diplomacy or faith from Civ)

Cons

  • The tutorial put me to sleep. There's a popup window and voiceover every time you do anything for the first 2 hours of the game
  • The UI can be unclear. For example, there is actually an indicator that tells you if your unit will be able to see/shoot at an enemy after moving, but it took me a while to realise that's what the green/yellow crosses meant. What do the numbers in the bottom right of equipped weapons mean? Why do some armies have a golden cup above them when they're not the target of a quest? What does "only works if this hero is the commander of an army" mean if there are two heroes in an army?
  • Every time I loaded a game, it reset all the tutorials, so all the popups came back in all the windows again
  • After a while, you end up just auto-battling because there's so much combat
  • Still a bit slow. It took about 10 hours to finish one game
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