All Features


  PlayStation 3
  PlayStation 4
  Wii U
  Xbox 360
  Xbox One


Demigod: Micromanagement is for Chumps

People play real-time strategy games for different reasons. Some people enjoy these games for their complexity, while others tinker around with mods in an effort to expand the limits of the game. Last, but not least, there are many RTS gamers who forgo base-building and mineral-collecting in favor of a good old-fashioned unit (read: Zerg) rush. Demigod offers a fresh, new take on the real-time strategy genre by eliminating the absolute necessity for base-building and focusing on hardcore action-RPG elements. Inspired by a well-known Warcraft III mod called Defense of the Ancients, this RTS-RPG hybrid casts you in the role of a giant hulking monstrosity (as the game's title suggests, a demigod) of your choice. Your demigod has one goal: to ascend to full-fledged godhood and fill the empty seat left by the all father. The competition is fierce, so you must battle it out with other aspiring deities-in-training to prove your worth. Thematically, Demigod seems to strike a balance between mythology and science-fiction. The opening cinematic in particular is compelling, and it is narrated by a man who sounds an awful lot like James Earl Jones (a definite plus). Unfortunately, I wasn't able to spend any time with Demigod's single-player campaign, but after playing a number of games online, I can definitely tell that a lot of effort has been put into the multiplayer component.

As you can see in the screenshot to your right, each game takes place on a grid-like flag-littered arena. At the ends of the arena lie the Citadels (essentially, the bases that belong to you and your adversary). Before I discuss the game's multiplayer modes, I'll narrow the core gameplay experience down to fit the constraints of a preview: the demigod is not an arbitrary commander. Rather, the demigod is a field presence - the only one you actively control. You aid your minions, collect gold and experience (by killing enemy forces), and buy upgrades and items with said gold and experience. Persist long enough, and you'll eventually become an unstoppable force. I've only had a taste of what is to come, but based on what I've played, you'll be able to take a huge number of approaches to different situations (especially when you're fighting alongside your friends). There are five multiplayer modes in Demigod, and they range from Conquest (destroy the enemy Citadel) to Domination (accrue a certain number of War Points by holding and defending strategic points). It also includes a standard Deathmatch mode, in which you must kill the enemy demigod a set number of times to achieve victory. In a nod to fans, Demigod includes a rather robust set of match customization options; this will undoubtedly please fans who like to get creative with their multiplayer experiences.

Demigod will make use of Stardock's Impulse system for a more streamlined multiplayer experience (referred to as "quasi-Hamachi like" by Stardock CEO Brad Wardell). Considering the fact that Stardock's Sins of a Solar Empire's multiplayer was handled beautifully, there doesn't seem to be any reason to doubt. Where Demigod differs from other games in the genre is most noticably the length of each match. You could spend an entire night playing a single game of Sins of a Solar Empire, but a game of Demigod usually won't even reach an hour in length. If you'd think this would hamper the addictiveness of the game, you'd be dead wrong.

There seem to be a few minor balancing issues in the preview build of Demigod, but Stardock has assured us that these problems will be ironed out before the game's release next month. Demigod's system requirements aren't as high as those of Gas Powered Games' Supreme Commander, but you'll still need a competent rig to play this game. Here's the deal: action-RPG fans and real-time strategy buffs have every reason to be excited for Demigod. It's unique and innovative, but it doesn't seem to lose the focus on pure fun. It is a very promising game, and PC gamers should definitely keep their eyes on this one until its April release. Bring on the pantheon!

-FenixDown, GameVortex Communications
AKA Jon Carlos

Related Links:

Sony PlayStation Portable Patapon 2 Multiplatform Wanted: Weapons of Fate

Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated