IMG Archives
Archives  Previews  Sacrifice  

Strategy & War
Release Date
Gold Master

December 14, 2001 | Michael Eilers

Click to enlarge
While the solo campaign levels have a wide variety of goals, characters and missions for you to explore, the essential structure of the game is the same – essentially an elaboration on the theme of capture-the-flag. You will always have a base you must protect (your Altar, the interface between you and your god) and there are strategic waypoints (known as Mana Fountains) you must capture and hold in your own defense. The only way to truly defeat an opponent is to “defile their altar” (capture their base). How you go about doing this is another story.

The Gods
Let’s meet the cast of power-mad deities you must serve (or betray!) in both the solo and multiplayer modes of this game. They are a mix of familiar mythological themes and Shiny-style oddness, as you might expect. Each god has a unique set of spells and creatures associated with it, part of the theme that befits their character and personality.

First is James, lord of “the Glebe,” an earthy realm. James is the first of many Shiny inside jokes – he’s the immortal incarnation of Earthworm Jim, their 2D side-scroller creation. In keeping with this earthy theme, the creatures that James commands are made of rocks and soil, and have abilities that fit that theme – well, they throw rocks. From the lowly Earthfling (a rock-throwing foot soldier) to the tanklike Taurock, these monsters like to get their hands dirty.

Next is Persephone, a goddess of nature and ruler of Elysium. With spells that reflect the power of nature (Lighting, a healing Rainbow, a rain of deadly frogs) she commands an array of creatures from Druids and Rangers to horrible Mutants. While she seems to be a peaceful goddess of wisdom and light, don’t turn your back on her for a second.

Stratos, the balloon-headed god of Empyrea, rules the ethereal realm of air. A lofty intellectual with a superiority complex, his somewhat weaker armies are balanced by powerful magical abilities. From the stealthy Sylph to the ice-throwing Flurry, he commands the power of weather and the storm.

The undead always seem to get a bad rap, and Charnel isn’t bitter about it; he seems to genuinely enjoy the fact that his minions are all assembled from the parts of dead creatures. Using the powers of pestilence and corruption, his undead armies are as hideous to look at as you might expect, and just as deadly.

And finally Pyro and his “proles” derive their power from his eternal flames, and can set their opponents on fire even with their dying breath. An infernal mix of mechanical parts and unholy flame, these powerful creatures can scorch a battlefield clean.


Archives  Previews  Sacrifice