I downloaded the demo of SpellForce – The Order of Dawn the other day, and its actually been rather fun. Spellforce is in an interesting mix RPG and RTS, with the RTS being the main focus of the game.
You start out commanding one guy, your avatar, and he/she is an uber unit compared to the others. As you do things, you gain XP which allows you to increase your level. You can then increase your stats and abilities to allow your guy to do more stuff. Along the way, you’ll pick up runes which will allow you to command up to three more not-so-uber units, such as fighters or wizards, to complement your persona.
As if that isn’t enough, each scenario is played out using the classic RTS style. You find a temple, bind to it, then you can start building the grunts. These guys go out and gather resources which you can then, of course, use to build structures and different grunty types. Along with the main goal of each scenario, there are also several side quests which you use your avatar to complete. You gain items, such as weapons and/or runes, that you can then use in the scenario. You don’t have to complete these in order to end the scenario. Also cool, when you complete a scenario, your guys are still there and you can cycle around your temple areas to build more stuff in later scenarios. Or so they say, the demo doesn’t do this.
The game looks nice, and you can play in the traditional isometric view, or zoom on down to an over-the-shoulder, third-person view of your avatar. Apparently, there are loads of spells, abilities and equipment to unlock. All of this adds to the playability of this game, and that comes from someone who doesn’t like RTS gams in general because of the amount of clicking involved.
All in all, I’ve had fun playing it, and I’m thinking about purchasing it when its released on this side of the pond on Feb. 2.