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Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes

Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes sets its stage in the wake of a cataclysm that has changed the world. Sovereigns have arisen fresh with the ability to manipulate magic. Each enters the world with an army of their own, ready to build an empire. Conquest and diplomacy are only a small selection of the tools at their disposal as they explore a world filled with monsters to battle and quests to complete.

The object of this game, regardless of the victory route pursued, is to build an empire. You may choose to battle or appease your fellow sovereigns, but no matter the choice you will still have to compete over the worlds limited resources. You’ll be building your cities, crafting unique wonders and various upgrades discovered via research. For all intents and purposes this is Civilization cast into the fantasy genre.

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Regardless of whether you’re planning to wage war or not, building your military is a necessary. There are the not only the other severeigns to be dealth with, but also the monsters that roam the land. Wolves and giant spiders wander in between ranks of fire demons and trolls and more. They will harass your armies and your cities, forcing you to keep up your defenses against the world’s most deadly residents.

Development of your military is a surprisingly complex endeavor. From training an army to recruiting champions to your cause, your war machine is yours to customize. Basic units can be trained in your cities and then upgraded in the field. As your empire grows in fame powerful individuals will ask to join your cause. The RPG leveling system tops it off, providing unique skill and class trees for your champions and your sovereigns, to hopefully give them the edge in battle.

And with all of that customization, it’s disappointing that the actual combat is very simplistic. Encountering an enemy brings you to a turn based battle where units are maneuvered on a grid. On one hand upgrading units grants access to new abilities and items that can be incredibly useful in a pinch.

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On the other hand the combat system puts a strong emphasis on gathering a group of soldiers around a single enemy and utilizing that basic attack. Move a single unit up to an opponent and your regular attack will be, as expected, ordinary. Move a second unit and now both of them attack in tandem, using up the first unit’s turn only. Order a soldier to attack an enemy and everyone beside that enemy will attack. The easiest way to survive a battle is to surround and destroy.

All of these complexities, are of course, taught through a dry, boring tutorial, or not at all. Legendary Heroes doesn’t leave the greatest first impression. Its graphics make the game look like an HD port of something released last generation. Its story drops out once the game starts, leaving you stranded, without direction as to what you’re expected to do next. There is a scenario to play through, but it does little to add any sort of entertaining narrative.

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At first glance the lack of direction appears to be a weakness, but in actuality Legendary Heroes requires you to assist it, to give it the direction it needs. The game thrives on customized scenarios just as much as it wants you to create your own unique army. To get the most out of the game it’s best to play around with the settings to make your own world.

You can choose a sovereign or build your own. Name him, or her. Name their kingdom. Decide what clothes they wear and what sigil is emblazoned on their banner. Give them a backstory. But that’s only the start of it. The experience of Legendary Heroes is highly user defined. It’s a sandbox for you to build your empire, for you to explore, and it’s up to you in regards to the how.

5 out of 10

The author of this fine article

is a Senior Staff Writer at Thunderbolt, having joined in July 2011.

Gentle persuasion

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