Hegemony is a quality product and you should play it.

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#1 Posted by Jimbo (10472 posts) -

Duders, I just heard this mentioned on the Bombcast and having played a fair chunk of it myself a couple months ago, figured I'd throw up a thread and a recommendation for it.
 
If you're into the Total War style games it's well worth checking out, because it does more than enough things differently to justify itself.  If you've been tempted by the Total War series but thought they look a little overwhelming, this is a great place to start, because it has the same fundamental elements of a TW game (build armies, fight, expand your empire) whilst being a lot more structured and guided than a typical TW campaign.  
 
Hegemony is real-time rather than turn-based (you can still pause to give orders whenevs) and the battles take place on the campaign map itself rather than loading into RTS mode, which I think really helps the pacing of the game feel more consistent.  The battles are simpler than they are in TW and a typical fight is only going to last a minute or two, but there is still room for a little tactical thought in the battles - ie. you can still beat superior armies if you arrange your own troops smartly.  
 
The campaign itself is structured around the history of Philip, so instead of just having a single objective of taking over the whole world, you are given many sets of objectives along the way.  The overall campaign is essentially broken up into seperate military campaigns (in the historical sense) in different areas of the map, with each of those military campaigns being made up of clearly defined objectives (capture Town X, kill General Y etc.).  There will generally be a few of these campaigns open to you at a time, and the game allows you enough freedom to tackle these campaigns as you see fit.  So it isn't just holding your hand through the process, but the objectives do a decent job of giving the game just enough structure to stop you either getting in over your head, or becoming so powerful that the campaign loses all challenge early on (which has always been a big problem in TW).
 
Overall the mechanics are all quite simple compared to Total War in truth, but I think that's entirely beneficial to the feel of the game.  Because you spend so little time tinkering with tax rates, or considering which building you should construct in a city, or upgrading roads, or lining up troops before a battle... you can just focus on planning and executing the military campaign at hand.  It very much puts the emphasis on running the military campaign, rather than having to worry about every little detail of your empire.  I think the TW series could learn a lot from Hegemony in this regard.  
 
To put the overall complexity of this game in perspective, it is a lot easier to get to grips with than something like Civ 4.  If you can competently play Civ 4, you are more than capable of playing this.
 
There's a generous demo available here, which incidentally has one of the greatest blue-balls demo endings ever.  If you like it, please support it with your dollars, because these are exactly the type of developers that we are lacking nowadays, and they deserve to be supported.

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#2 Posted by Earthborn (395 posts) -

I agree. Hegemony is great. Played it at PAX. Listen to this man ^

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#3 Posted by Jimbo (10472 posts) -
BUMP
 
Because this finally went up on Steam.  And it's cheap!  £13 in the UK, $20 in the US (or so I'm led to believe).  It's a bargain at that price.

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