A long-time fixture in the PC
strategy gaming universe, the Settlers franchise has long been a popular one in
Europe, but hasn’t really made a very huge dent in North America. However,
Ubisoft is looking to change that with their newest entry to the long-running
franchise, The Settlers VII: Paths to a Kingdom.
For those who are uninitiated with
the series, Settlers is a city-building/real-time strategy hybrid that focus
very heavily on building a strong economy. The game is extremely flexible,
allowing you to create the kind of empire that you want, with a focus on a
strong military, trade, and so on. However, a lot of other things come into
consideration when it comes to building a successful empire, including creating
storehouses for your goods in order to keep your workers from having to trek so
far when transporting, having efficient roads for them to traverse, researching
new technology, and many other factors. Settlers VII continues that by providing
a deep and engaging experience, as well as one that it accessible to newcomers
and casual strategy fans.
Settlers VII will offer up plenty of
new features for fans of the series, as well as some that will definitely appeal
to newcomers. The game will feature a 12-mission campaign mode that will not
only tell a compelling story, but will allow you to unlock new elements that can
be used in skirmishes both online and off.
Additionally, the game’s camera
gives you a completely free perspective. Not only can you zoom right into the
action, even to the point of making out individual blades of grass, but will
also allow you to rotate your view to look off into the distance without an
isometric shift. This is a nice touch, and gives you a great view of the map.
Another new element introduced in
Settlers VII is Victory Points. In order to win skirmishes you have to earn a
set amount of Victory Points. You gain Victory Points by satisfying specific
conditions of the match, including technological research or acquiring a certain
amount of gold or resources. The first kingdom to attain the set number of
Victory Points is the winner, although your opponents can attack your kingdom in
order to knock your progress down a peg.
Settlers VII will also offer up some
robust community features, including customizable leaderboards and Facebook
integration in addition to solid online gameplay. All in all, strategy gamers
should have plenty to get excited for with Settlers VII. Look for it this March.