Age Of Wonders – Planetfall: Invasions
Triumph Studios / Paradox Interactive
Age Of Wonders – Planetfall has been one of my top go-to strategy game choices since its debut back in August of 2019. Its blend of city and sector management, along with a slick tactical combat layer is complex, yet becomes more and more intuitive the more you play it. It also has some really cool factions to play as that you can gussy up with Secret Technologies and outfit your units with all manner of modifications. All of these elements come together to ensure that no two games are ever alike.
The game’s second big expansion has been announced, titled: Age Of Wonders – Planetfall: Invasions, and features a whole new slew of juicy content. First up are the Shakarn, a race of treacherous lizardmen who were shunned by the former almighty Star Union. However, since the downfall of the Star Union, these ruthless scaly aliens have come out of hiding and now stake their claim for galactic dominance.
I really like the concept of the Shakarn so far, they have a very broad range of units that utilize both brawn and deception. For instance, one of their more straight-forward units is called the Domok, which attacks using brute force, while another, called Infiltrators, can disguise themselves as enemy units. All of their units seem to be amphibious, which means they can move through water hexes just like flying units, as well as having regenerative capabilities.
There’s also an interesting new NPC faction of mutants called Therians. These warriors are fleeing their homeworld (for reasons as of yet unknown) and have fused their DNA with those of animals. Hence, they have unique units such as fox-like snipers and wolf-like grunts. They look like they could be one of the most interesting NPC factions yet.
A new end-of-game crisis comes in the form of the new Voidbringers; slithery amorphic aliens that will commence a full-scale invasion at a certain point in time. These horrific monstrosities seem to be able to either take over other faction’s units or resurrect fallen ones; we’ll have to see which as we get closer to the DLC’s May 26th launch.
If that wasn’t enough, there will also now be over 20 new environmental hazards. These potentially calamitous events can affect the entire planet and change gameplay on both the strategic and tactical maps. For instance, massive earthquakes can occur which raise spontaneous mountain ranges. These can not only affect the geoscape, but also throw units off-balance during tactical combat. I’m looking forward to these random events as they will really stir up games, forcing players to adapt their strategies on the fly.
Here are some tidbits from the official Planetfall website:
“In the stardust and disunity of the collapsed Star Union, an insidious new race of conquerors has come to lay claim to the galaxy. Deploy and destroy as the merciless Shakarn, a vicious race of conniving lizardmen with holographic disguises ready to deceive, disrupt and disintegrate the last strongholds of human power.”
“Face the ultimate late-game challenge as the enigmatic Voidbringers use trans-dimensional warfare to rain down legions of enthralled soldiers across your empire.”
Hence the title of the DLC, Invasions. What isn’t known yet is whether or not there will be a new Secret Technology. We’ll just have to wait and see.
Age Of Wonders – Planetfall has some pretty good looking graphics that make its 4X gameplay truly shine. However, you want to have a pretty beefy gaming PC or gaming laptop in order to play it at a decent framerate. So, you may just want to invest in a decent gaming rig:
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