|Publisher: Shrapnel Games Genre: Strategy & War|
|Min OS X: 10.1 RAM: 64 MB Hard Disk: 250 MB|
Dominions II (D2) is a turn-based strategy from Shrapnel Games. Rather than the typical premise of you assuming the role of a regular military commander, you assume the mantle of a demi-god or ‘Pretender’. The goal for each Pretender is to spread their gospel to other territories on the map. Up to seventeen people can play Dominions II at once. This can be accomplished via email, computer AI or TCP/IP.
GraphicsThe visuals in D2 are not what you would expect from a game released in 2003. The main map is 2D and the battle units are made using sprites and not 3D models. There. The negative comment is out of the way. Dominions II is not entirely about the visuals and though they are undeniably an integral part of the overall gameplay experience, the lack of any 3D models or maps does not take anything away from the overall experience of Dominions II. This game is more about the strategy and planning involved in making your moves and granular level of control.
SoundSounds in Dominions II are done well. The music, as you would expect, is appropriate to the game; however a big knock on it is that it gets very old, very fast for the music for the main game screen map and for the battles.
GameplayDominions II is not a game for the gamer that wants to park their brain at the door and engage in mindless entertainment. The game will make you think about a myriad of details from unit formation to spell learning to income management to conquest because once your turn has ended, the computer fights all the battles.
At the beginning of the game, you are asked to create a god. This consists of choosing a race. Then an avatar and a name are chosen for that god. At this point you are assigned a certain number of points to spend to increase your Pretender’s magical abilities and build a fortress. Each avatar has its own innate magical abilities (there are eight in all: Fire, Water, Air, Earth, Astral, Nature, Death and Blood). It costs fewer points to increase a natural magical ability than it does to learn a new. Subsequent to choosing your Pretender, you are asked to choose a race to play and which races the computer will play with differing AI difficulties. Then the game’s first turn can begin.