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Ministry of War Review
Sep 26,2011 02:09 by Sara Lau2
Ministry of War can be said to be a standard strategy game, with all that should be there and nothing more. It doesn’t stand out excelling its peers, nor does it lag behind being a bore. It impresses on you as a different game seen from its never-seen-before back story, yet at the core it makes no difference to present a typical gaming mechanics mostly adopted in the genre of strategy. It simply makes do.
Ministry of War provides four civilizations listed as Persia, Egypt, Rome and China, from which you need to choose so as to set up the first City in the very nation. This program can be also seen from Empire Rising because they are all produced based on Chinese original codes. Imprinted with different history, each civilization lets you have its own special troops, civilization bonus and specialty, such as Anubis Guard and Chariot, 20% more metal production and higher research speed exclusive to Egypt. After selecting the birth place, you will be led to the initial build.
Just following the guidance of a military adviser, you can begin to build your City in the empty plot. The tutorial is so newbie-friendly that it not only helps construct the basic, essential buildings needed to lay a solid foundation for further development but also spares beginners the trouble of wavering about the layout by pre-setting the very place for each build. (Yet the other side of the coin is that strategy veterans may feel robbed of the freewill to build the city their own way.) And once the tutorial is done, you will have a functioning City in the simplest fashion, whose progress in days to come is solely in your hand. Starting from the Savage Age, it for sure has a long way to go, evolving gradually through Dark Age to Feudal to Castle and finally to Empire Age.
As five types of resource fuel all activities, it is important to upgrade the build already in town and meanwhile level up the nearby available mines, farms and quarries, etc. for more outcomes. Resources are consumed quickly and harvested slowly, which is rather frustrating when you are baffled by the impossibility of finishing the daily tasks even due to the lack of resource. To finish the task of conquering a Level 10 Lair, you rally heroes and troops to march there, but only to find that they simply cannot arrive because of insufficient food, for instance. Progression is slow-paced, and as usual money makes it go faster.
In addition to build, real-time combat is another must that ushers in relevant elements such as shaping powerful army, forming guilds, as well as using strategy to compete in various modes of PvP, etc. in the game. Heroes can be empowered by way of gaining experience, attributes, items and skills; the army can be comprised by varied units covering melee, range, cavalry and siege; and the strategic combination of both will lead to success. Sounds fierce and challenging, right?
But don’t expect any exciting confrontation visible in the map, for all you can see is the image of chosen heroes moving to represent dispatch of troops and an icon of two swords clanking to indicate crossfire of both sides. Although you can choose the fighting mode, manual or automatic, you may soon realize that it doesn’t make much difference.
The 2D graphics look eye-catching and impressive, just like we are thrown back in the Ancient Rome: the vast map is dotted with cities of all size, lairs and dungeons as well as spreads of wilderness in panorama, while each city emerges anew with uniquely styled buildings to match the five different ages.
All in all, Ministry of War has got everything that a strategy MMO normally contains, but it hasn’t made the best out of anything. Even Snail Games begin to merge servers due to lack of players.
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