By Yap Hui Bin
|Majesty 2: The Fantasy Kingdom Sim
|» Price: $56.90
» Genre: Real-time strategy
» Platform: PC
» Rating: 6/10
GIVE sufficient reward and your subjects will get things done.
Sounds like some management ploy? This is how Majesty 2: The Fantasy Kingdom Sim is played.
Like the original title released in 2000, Majesty 2 is a real-time strategy (RTS) set in a fantasy world minus the tedium of micro-management.
Instead of issuing direct orders to your units, you put a bounty on tasks to be done in the hope of spurring your subjects to carry them out.
Gameplay is straightforward - earn gold to build guilds and train heroes to upgrade their abilities.
Gold is the key resource in Majesty 2 but managing it is a tricky affair.
Unlike most RTS titles, Majesty 2 has no mines and farms for gathering resources.
Instead, the economy is built through trading posts and caravans and establishing businesses such as inns and blacksmiths to generate income.
Heroes include characters like rangers, warriors, wizards and even dwarves and elves who will explore the land, defend your territories and eliminate monsters, at a price.
As you cannot control them directly, battles are difficult to coordinate, especially when facing a group of strong monsters.
You cannot choose to direct attacks on individual enemies unless you have a burgeoning treasury. Thankfully, there are spells which you can cast directly, such as Holy Heal, Resurrection and Lightning Bolts that give you some control in battles.
For a game that dispenses with micro-management, I find the heroes- common sense lacking. For instance, rangers will explore only the area that they are paid to cover but will fail to collect treasures on their journey back even if the treasures are lying right at their feet.
The game keeps things lively with amusing villains and humorous lines.
However, game play feels repetitive after a few missions: you build cities, grow economies, amass heroes, destroy enemies from minotaurs to dragons - and the cycle repeats itself.
Majesty 2's simplified game play is good for gamers who feel overwhelmed by the intricacies of traditional RTS games but not for warlords who demand complete control over subjects, just like the control freak in me does.
Yap Hui Bin is a freelance writer who demands complete subservience from her subjects
This story was first published in The Straits Times Digital Life.
For more The Straits Times stories, click here.