age-of-wonders-3
Metacritic: 80/100
Release: Mar 2014
Reviewed on: PC

Age of Wonders III

Site Score
8.0
Good: Solid 4X experience – One of the best fantasy themed turn based games
Bad: Some unbalances and unnecessary micromanagement
User Score
7.9
(15 votes)
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Age of Wonders III re-energises the series with an offering that keeps the high fantasy theme but refines the 4X and turn based strategy elements. Released in 2014 you’ve got single player, multiplayer and co-operative gameplay all in one.

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Taking control of your own race you’ll be thrown into a leadership role as you explore, interact and fight as you expand your empire. While at the core of the experience it’s about turn based with 4X elements you’ll also find a number of role-playing elements littered throughout the game.

Six races populate the game world; humans, high elves, draconians, orcs, dwarves and goblins. After choosing which one you want to play (which all come with their own unique perks and abilities) you’ll have to create a leader for your empire which is also highly customisable through skillsets which will shape your overall grand strategy.

These leaders and other heroes that you pick up along the way will level up and gain experience to invest in new equipment and devastating powers. You’ll also be able to dictate their alignment with good and evil which comes with their own pros and cons.

Cities are your foundation in Age of Wonders III where you’ll generate your resources, recruit units and develop your technology. In addition to your own cities and those of your enemies you’ll also encounter a number of aligned cities which you can absorb into your domain which can play an important role in strategy by unlocking units not usually available to your chosen race.

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Combat is full of show as you command your forces over a hexagonal grid that comes to life when you engage in direct conflict or a siege of an enemy city. Players are free to group units together to form ranks, use magical spells and call in new units during combat with action points defining the number of actions each group of units can make.

In terms of fantasy 4X games there aren’t many that can compete on the same level as Age of Wonders III.

Summary:

  • High fantasy strategy game.
  • Blend of 4X, turn based and even RPG elements.
  • Several races that each offer their own strategy style.
  • Develop heroes to lead your empire into battle.
  • Play single player, multi-player and even co-operative.

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Age of Wonders III, 7.9 out of 10 based on 15 ratings
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