View Full Version : Age of Myth - first look

07-11-2002, 10:39:26
To hell with all the Ology stuff:).

Played a skirmish game with teammate Rachel against a single easy A.I opponent. The first thing I can confirm is that the 'easy' A.I is very easy. It won't push you, far less punish you, at all. Just for those of you who like to jump into a skirmish game against the computer but dislike having your ass handed back to you on a wooden platter with axes in it.

In answer to the question on everyone's lips - does this play more easily than Age of Kings, I would have to say, so far, YES.

I tried the Norse, under the protection of Thor, who has apparently lost his thunder god status to Zeus in this version and is now the god of mining gold. I saved my starting God power until the 4 age, and used it just before we won the game to summon a massive 6000g mine right next to my town center.

Rachel played as the Eyptians, she of course chose the cat-lady goddess, and I think ladys and gentlemen she is set for the rest of the forseeable future with that:).

It took me ages to work out how to use the Norse for a start - they're that easy to play:). There are three odd features that had me a bit flummouxed. Number one, infantry are the ones who construct buildings, your villagers just mine resources. Number two, there are two different types of villagers: Humans and Dwarves. Humans are the standard AoM human, Dwarves are unique to the Norse, are crap at wood and food, but great at mining gold. Thirdly, you can't build any gathering sites for resources. Instead, your town center can build an Oxen + cart thing, which acts as a mobile gathering point - very nice. Finally, you can select a villager at any point and upgrade them to infantry instantly, just by paying the normal infantry price.

Despite this, and a bunch of other messing around, I managed to get to the third age in about 16 minutes, a time I would have been insanely proud of reaching had I just picked out Age of Kings and played that again messing around.

The general feeling I get from the game so far is that Ensemble really fucking hated all the sleazy things people did in Age of Kings, and all the really difficult crap you had to put up with in it. Some aspects of the game have been ruthlessly nerfed - for instance, you can only place a town center on pre-placed 'settlements' found at various points on the map. Combating the infamous 'tower rush' AoK was so plagued by, your first town center starts out surrounded by three guard towers, which you can quickly upgrade, ensuring that no-one can easily tower you in. And town centers are now real death stars in their own right, firing volleys regardless of whether they have been garrisoned or not.

Also, the way the three civs and 9 gods are designed, there seems to be almost always a civ or a god that is very strong in a particular area. If you can't handle boar luring, for instance, play the Norse (mobile gathering points). Or the Greeks as Poseidon, who's god power is to create a magic lure stone that draws nearby animals towards it. If you hate getting rushed, play the Greeks as Hades, who starts with the ability to imbue a friendly towncenter with 4 statues that fire arrows.

Likewise, if you're a master of luring animals, try Odin, for his Great Hunt power, and if you want to rush an enemy, perhaps use Loki and his Spy power, to see what you're up against early on.

I'm off to try the campaigns now, but I'm getting a good feeling so far about the game.

07-11-2002, 10:45:29
Sounds promising so far.

07-11-2002, 10:46:15
You guys still better keep playing us at WCIII though? :D

07-11-2002, 12:00:07
Yes, and Diablo2:).

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 12:03:42
diablo poo

07-11-2002, 12:05:09
Shakey, when you get this I'll borrow one of your disks or something. ;)

07-11-2002, 12:06:23
The first bit of good news we had from the game was that it would run on a LAN without needing two CDs.

Bioware and Infogrames just look more and more evil every day...

07-11-2002, 12:09:58
It comes with two disks anyway, though?

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 12:10:07
I was thinking of buying it at lunchtime to cheer me up.

07-11-2002, 12:13:36
Cool. Give you a game tonight then. ;)

07-11-2002, 12:13:37
Strictly speaking that should be 2 CD keys. But since the second CD is the just the install CD, as Rachel talked about before, I didn't think that needed to be mentioned.

07-11-2002, 12:14:51
Rachel didn't say that actually. She just said it came on 2 disks. :p We aren't mind readers.

07-11-2002, 12:16:35
Just to be safe, I should mention it now - the trick is to get into the 'start game' screen, then pop the CD and give it to the next person.

Aredhran didn't know this. Others might:).

07-11-2002, 12:18:23
So if 1 disk is the install disk what's on the other one and which do you need to play the game?

07-11-2002, 12:18:43
Or download a crack.

07-11-2002, 12:18:56
And that CD thing works on Warcraft III as well.

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 12:21:50
that's what AOK did as well isn't it.
I might not be going to town now, Mike, you'll have to buy it ;)

07-11-2002, 12:24:19
There's no rush. :beer:

07-11-2002, 12:27:28
If I get it now I'll have to learn all the tactics from scratch. Much easier to wait a few months then just copy what everyone else has already learnt and start from there. :D

Plus, I haven't got time to play WIII at the moment let alone another game as well.

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 12:42:18
sod it, I got my cowie to go and buy it for me.
hopefully he'll come back with the right game.

I've got too much time on my hands :(

07-11-2002, 12:43:36
You should be fucking awesome at WCIII then. I have played 1 1/2 games in the last fortnight.

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 12:47:46
you'd think so :)

07-11-2002, 13:11:56
Damn. When people start talking good about a game it makes me want to have it.

07-11-2002, 13:34:49
Didn't work with Warcraft.

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 13:35:13
It's ok, it aint released here till tomorrow.

07-11-2002, 13:43:58
Of course... I keep thinking it's Friday. And those kiwis are a day ahead.

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 13:49:08

07-11-2002, 13:56:58
That was quick; ShareReactor has it available already :(.

07-11-2002, 14:06:09
Wooo! New Zealand rocks!:D

And we got it before Australia, too!:D

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 14:14:39
Lets go sink that motherfucking rock!

07-11-2002, 14:15:44
But I played Warcraft and didn't like it. Thank god for pirating games. Should have done that with Total War and saved myself some money.

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 14:18:26
Are there any real good games about pirates?

07-11-2002, 14:23:11


07-11-2002, 14:42:33
Old Game?:D

07-11-2002, 14:44:19
Old but fucking excellent game.

The Shaker
07-11-2002, 14:54:51
Ob Feg

07-11-2002, 15:03:55
Ob Feg, Ric!

07-11-2002, 15:06:07
Monkey Island!

09-11-2002, 13:12:36
Second Look:

I've played very simple games with all three civs now. Some civ specific stuff, and then some general stuff

The classic 'defender' civ. They get the best tower and wall upgrades, and can build like no-one else. You might also call them a 'building' civ - they get their power from monuments, all their non-military buildings are free, and none of them cost wood.

The majority of their bonuses and god powers (compared to other civs anyway) are about improving the performance of their labourers and buildings, and screwing up their opponent's resource collecting.

They get a single hero, a Pharoh, and can use priests to heal (but not convert) units. The Pharoh can empower buildings to make them work faster, and is a fairly good fighter, but devastating against Myth units. Priests are utterly crap fighters except against Myth units - but the healing in between battles is very useful.

Best god power I've seen: Meteor. This absolutely rocks!
Best myth unit: The 'crocodile with laser beam strapped to it's forehead.'

Your standard heavy armor civ. Tough, damaging troops, good archers, good cavalry, and some very impressive siege. And their Myth units get even better. Minotaurs, Cyclopes, and Hydras just for starters. Their heroes, individually, are probably the best units in the game, but you are limited to one per age (for a total of 4).

It's very difficult to heal, I've found, as the Greeks. This probably isn't too much of a problem (there are a couple of ways) given that AoM doesn't really lend itself to running away from battles too much.

Best god power: Difficult to say, there are some really nice ones. Lightning storm for outright battle turning goodness, but Ceasefire for supreme annoyance.
Best Myth unit: the Hydra. Huge and really scary.

The Norse:
A mobile raiding civ, I think. They're practically all infantry, though they have some reasonable cavalry options should that be required. But with 4 infantry classes (anti-myth/hero, anti-cavalry, anti-infantry and anti-archer), you're most likely to spend your time walking across the map.

Their mobile drop off points for resources (the Ox cart) are a high point, as are their gold mining dwarves, for a nice balanced resource effort. They have the weakest towers by far, however, with only the basic upgrade (watch tower to guard tower) available, and their way of generating favour (battle) means they might suffer a bit against a true turtle. As against that, they can literally field a whole army of myth-killers, so they also have the best defense against myth units, and you probably don't want to engage in wave attacks against them, as you'll just be feeding them power to come back at your with fire giants and Fenris Brood Wolves.

Best god power: There's a couple of mid-game ones I really like. One lets you freeze a whole battlefield of enemies, who remain vulnerable to attack but unable to move for the duration, and the other summons a healing spa anywhere you choose on the map.
Best myth unit: Fenris Brood Wolves feed of each other's power when close together, and by the time you get to about 5-6 of them they start to look a bit unstoppable.

The general stuff:
The game definitely plays much faster and easier than Age of Kings. With a bit of effort (but no serious calculations) I was able to reach the fourth age in 20 minutes, which should probably mean its possible in close to 12-15 with a lot of practise. In short, the game seems to play about 2-3 times faster than Age of Kings, and you can easily start to field an army after the first 5 minutes (sooner with the Norse - much sooner).

Trading god powers between teammates seems to be quite an important part of the play, too. There's a lot of stuff that can be used to help or defend your allies in various ways, and paying attention to their particular strengths or weaknesses will definitely help.

The game also seems to lost nearly all the maddenlying minor flaws of Age of Kings, too. I can't comment about the rushing styles yet, but here's a start on the others:
* No desperate 10 minute start based around pure building/gathering.
* Infinite food in your farms/fishing.
* Military units cost 2-5 supply now, instead of 1 each, so armies of 150 units are long gone.
* Virtually nothing is uncounterable, there always seems to be something that will slaughter it convincingly.
* Improvements (and there are a lot of them) can be queued up alongside units, ending the need to constantly return to the building to start new research.
* You can't spam town centers everywhere. On a good 1vs1 map, assuming you are even with your opponent, you'll be able to get 3-4. Likewise, houses are capped at 10, which means you don't need to build endless numbers of them, and each house supports 10 supply instead of 5.
* 3 resources instead of 4 means resource gathering is half as complex to manage.
* There's about three times as much depth to the actual game with the addition of gods and myth units. Not only do you have to balance armies with counter cav and counter archer/infantry units, you're also building myth units (a further level of counters) and selecting minor gods/god powers which limits your overall power at the endgame.

I rate it as a massive improvement over Age of Kings, and it has that nice polished feel to it, like I had when playing Starcraft. This could be a very good game.