Game Name:Total War: Rome II
Developer: Creative Assembly
Genres: Real-time strategy, Turn-based strategy
At the end of the day the Total War faithful will love it, but it may not be enough to entice the Civilization faithful to defect.
You know, I really like strategy games. I wish I was better at them, but I genuinely really enjoy them. I’ve already had the pleasure of reviewing the enjoyable Company of Heroes 2 this year and I’ve just finished playing Total War: Rome II for this review. The Total War series is a long-standing favourite in the real-time strategy genre, maybe not quite up there with the behemoth that is Starcraft 2, but it’s fairly unique take on the strategy genre, where it emphasises huge battles with massive forces is enjoyable by many, despite its difficulty.
Total War: Rome II is the titular sequel to the series’ third entry, released back in 2004 and with it developer The Creative Assembly aims to bring a collection of new improvements and additions to the Total War formula, while going back to one of the series’ most memorable settings and indeed one of history’s most memorable and plentiful war eras.
By far the most notable difference in Total War: Rome II over previous series entries is its increased expansion outside of the battlefield itself, often reminding me of Civilization. The addition of new difficulty conditions, provincial groupings and the vast amount of civilisations on the campaign over-map. While this brings along many improvements to the game, it also adds some confusion in terms of the game’s identity. We’ll get to that in a bit.
Let’s start with the basics though: Total War: Rome II is beautiful. From the moment you begin the game’s more story-based and cinematic prologue and make your presence known on the battlefield, the visual fidelity and sheer scale is immediately noticeable; environments look amazing in the Italian sun, the sea swishes and glistens, and no matter how much you zoom in you’ll see just how much work went into each soldier.