There is a lot to enjoy at the core of strategy games from the calculated risks of the Civilization series, to the frantic reaction needed for StarCraft, to the precise timing and positioning of Clash Royale. Strategy games were made a staple for PC players, offering full screen control of all the menus one can dream of. In a way, many strategy games are about mastering the mechanics of the interface and only then can the real strategies emerge. These games have proved incredibly popular over the years, as their origins trace pretty far back to the early days of PC gaming.
The genre has been around long enough to make risks and experiment to the point that these days many strategy games are a conglomeration of the best working parts of games of the past. Even the popular MOBA genre of League of Legends, Defense of the Ancients 2, and Smite have origins in strategy games and many of these MOBA games play like a traditional strategy, but usually focuses on a singular unit. Really, consoles have been operating at a loss in the world of strategy games, just because of the challenge of making them work with a controller. Siegecraft Commander, a new game from Blowfish Studios (Deer God, Gunscape), looks find that balance by being playable on many different consoles including VR. Plus, Siegecraft Commander is available on most of its target platforms now.
Siegecraft Commander enables players to create a fortress and defend it in various ways, while also having plenty of offensive actions as well. On the surface, that description fits just about any strategy game worth its salt, but where it differentiates is the unique mechanic of how these bases are made and laid out. Essentially, players will be creating a web of points, much like those used to brainstorm stories in many English classes. The central base can catapult buildings, which then leave a trail back to the base. If a building is destroyed, everything broken from the chain is destroyed as well. This creates interesting decisions when building. Does one stay centralized and create many arms or branch out like the Sphere Grid of Final Fantasy X?
Interestingly enough, Siegecraft Commander also addresses another staple of the strategy genre: how time is kept. Most strategy games are either turn-based or real-time with some games blending the two together occasionally, but more often than not stick to one or the other. Siegecraft Commander has the option to do one or the other for its multi-player battles, which is a nice addition for those who have a preference. This can make console battles more accessible for those starting out, while also having advantages to experiencing both, as strategies that work in real-time may not work in turn-based play or vice versa. The single-player campaign is set in real-time though, which has the player defending their castles against the offensive Lizardmen. A second campaign as the Lizardmen is also available, each with eight levels.
“Siegecraft Commander invites fans of both turn-based battles and frantic skirmishes to enjoy a versatile strategy game designed for either preference. From support for different playstyles, cross-play, and traditional monitor or VR setups, Siegecraft Commander is an open invitation for anyone who loves strategy to craft a flawless battle plan, steady their aim, and take out their rivals.” – Benjamin Lee, CEO, Blowfish Studios
The game will feature 28 unique structures to build, giving each of the 2-4 tacticians at play plenty of ways to take each other down. Console players can also play with PC users, which the world just needs more and more of. There is also optional VR controls, giving the player a bird’s eye view, while also taking advantage of motion controllers.
Siegecraft Commander is out now for Xbox One, PS4, PC, and HTC Vive. The game is also getting support as a free update to Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR, and the Nvidia Shield 2 later this year. The game will be priced at $19.99 with many stores offering a 30% discount at the moment.
It will be interesting to see Siegecraft Commander in action, as any strategy game hinges on its player base, but if its well designed and offers interesting battles players will inevitably flock to it. This is aided by the sheer number of ways to play, plus having that PC cross play. We’ll definitely be keeping an eye on the game as it goes.