Great Strategy Game with Annoying Issues
If you liked Puzzle Quest as much as I did, you will like this game. Period. It really does scratch the exact same itch as that game although the gameplay is clearly different. I loved the different classes/character options, ability to customize armies and artifacts that allowed further customization of specific themed builds. The story mode, while not doing anything dramatically new or special, was a nice touch to introduce you to the different characters and gradually introduce new classes.
There are a couple of things that drove me crazy, which is why I scored this the way I did. The load times in this game are insane - it takes 10 seconds of loading to do anything or go anywhere. This reminded me of Bayonetta and Naruto on PS3 where I grit my teeth as I soldiered on out of sheer force of will through load times that would typically cause me to turn the game off and never play again. Also, there is a key design decision that seems absolutely baffling to me. For the elite and champion units, you have to buy stock of the units. To the extent that one gets killed in battle, you have to replenish your stock. It adds absolutely nothing to the game other than having to walk back across the map (through more load times) to buy more and waste time. It seems to me like once I buy the unit, the game should have just limited the number I could use to maintain balance. This is the kind of crap Square-Enix likes to pull where they make an absurd design decision and call it a "feature".
I kept playing despite these annoyances, which speaks to how good the core game is. While there are some balancing tweaks and updates I'd like to see if they ever made a sequel, this was $10 well spent and I would recommend this game to anyone who couldn't get enough Puzzle Quest.