Sword of Aragon mixes elements of fantasy and sorcery with the mundane world of finances and resource management and a healthy dose of strategy thrown in for good measure. And "good" very nicely sums up the game play to be found in this hybrid war game. The game has something for everyone who likes their combat and tactical planning spiced up with a bit of wizardry and magic. Basically, Sword of Aragon is a game of conquest in which you, as the son of the late king of Aladda, are tasked with ridding the world of some nasty, evil denizens who have total chaos on their collective minds. You'll fight giants, monsters, demons, and orcs with an army of your choosing, headed by one of five possible classes. Your choice of a main character (and army leader) must be a ranger, priest, mage, knight or warrior, each having specific qualities, attributes and strengths. No matter which you choose, they all can be enhanced through experience and/or combat as the game progresses. The higher the characters climb in ability (levels), the more powerful they become in their specialty and the more positive influences they can exert on the capabilities of your army.
Games come in easy, normal or expert modes with corresponding difficulty in raising forces, earning money to acquire and train those forces, and general effectiveness in battle. Fighting units have the usual fare of war gaming skills such as levels of spells to cast, armor class, weaponry, hit points and so forth. Through a system of taxation that can range from 0 to 80%, you earn gold with which to upgrade existing units and buy new war machinery like better and more powerful weapons, horses and mercenaries among other items. All of your wheeling and dealing affects the population so you'll need to keep abreast of the current status of the home front by monitoring income, loyalty, health, morale and tax rates which can have specific negative consequences if allowed to deteriorate and get out of hand. Managing resources such as ore, crops, building materials and trade is tied to the generation of additional income which naturally affects the size and ability of your army.
Sword of Aragon is played in a dynamic world where armies rise and fall and trouble appears regularly. You must seek out these trouble spots (sometimes they'll find you) and squelch the uprisings. Additionally, you'll have to continually expand your territories by conquering enemy cities and absorbing their economies and troops. The interface is very user-friendly as you fight your way across Aragon in a top down view that switches to a battlefield perspective during confrontations. Movement and attack points define your army strength and fighting modes include fanatic, attack, moderate or defense. Sword of Aragon is a solid strategy/combat mix with enough diversity to prolong interest for quite a while.
Graphics: Simplistic but colorful.
Enjoyment: Interesting game world with well defined character classes and lively play. Fairly tough strategic nuances but repeated playing will dampen the challenge.
Replay Value: Limited value even with the five possible character approaches. Once a strategy is perfected it should work most of the time.
Your father, the loved Duke of Allada was last night murdered by Orcish hordes and same Orcs have come again to invade your city. Now is the time to avenge your father and keep well the title Duke of Allada. Recruit an army and prepare for the upcoming onslaught! The future and fate of Allada and its role in Aragon now rests in your hands!
Sword of Aragon is a turned-based fantasy strategy game where you rule a small town called Allada in the North Western part of the land known as Aragon. Most of the political map is yet undiscovered and you have to maintain a strong economy and military force to venture forth. The storyline revolves around your duties as the Duke of Allada, exploring the uncharted areas of Aragon and uncovering its mysteries, conquering neighboring cities, as well as the political intrigues surrounding the city-states of Aragon.
In Sword of Aragon, you can choose one of the 5 different character classes for your leading hero, each with different bonuses to your troops and abilities: Warrior, Knight, Ranger, Priest, or Mage. Different selection of character class does not affect the storyline.
Regarded by many wargamers as THE best fantasy wargame ever made, SSI's Sword of Aragon is a true precursor of later classics Conquered Kingdoms and SSI's own Fantasy General. Set in the Aragonian Empire, you are heir of the late Duke of Aladda, and your task is to once again extend Aladda's dominion and eventually crown yourself king in Tetrada. Executing your father's will properly means raising and equipping an army, then venturing forth to do battle against the dastardly foes threatening Aladda and its surroundings. Your success in Sword of Aragon depends on careful allocation of precious resources, astute military planning, and deft combat maneuvers. Knights, priests, warriors, mages, rangers, cavalry, infantry, and bowmen are some of the units you can recruit, and in true AD&D fashion, you can equip them with different armor types. Nothing in the game will strike anyone today as a big deal, but back in 1989 it was a revolutionary title that attracted many non-wargamers to the genre. Excellent AI and addictive gameplay help Sword of Aragon remain one of the most playable and replayable fantasy wargames ever.
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Sword of the Samurai, Fantasy General, Steel Panthers 3: Brigade Command (1939-1999), Steel Panthers 2: Modern Battles, Steel Panthers, Star Trek: Starfleet Command 3, Stronghold, Warcraft 2
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