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Hegemonia: Legions of Iron

Score: 90%
ESRB: Teen
Publisher: DreamCatcher Interactive
Developer: Digital Reality
Media: CD/1
Players: 1 - 8
Genre: Real-Time Strategy

Graphics & Sound:

The graphics in Hegemonia: Legions of Iron are about as innovative as the gameplay is, which is saying a lot. The battleground on which you fight takes place within solar systems populated with revolving planets, moons, asteroid fields, and of course, a plethora of unique starships. Hegemonia also boasts some of the coolest looking explosions ever seen in an RTS. There is a tradeoff, though. Graphics with this level of detail require some heavy equipment to be able to handle them, so if your machine is slow, you'll not be able to experience these beautiful visuals.

The quality of the music is comparable to that of the graphics. The tracks are melodic and not too distracting, but their timing could have been a little better. It would have been nice to hear faster paced music kick in when you start up a firefight, but this is a trifle of an argument. Excellent sound effects accompany the score, and manage to add to the unique experience of the game.


Hegemonia is a space-based RTS. Following in the footsteps of games like Homeworld, this game takes things a little bit deeper. Set in the future where relations between Earth and Mars are shaky, you take control of one of these two sides and fight it out in a Campaign mode that weaves a storyline involving three completely different races.

Aside from ship construction and managing your fleet, you must also deal with a high degree of micro-management. As all battles take place within a number of solar systems, your main vein of resources will be planets that you must colonize and defend. Building mining bases and tapping asteroids are available for secondary income growth, but controlling a number of planets is a must if you want to stay alive.

Researching new technologies and keeping as current as possible in the tech race is just as important as keeping a strong number of ships around. During the Campaign, the technologies you have researched carry over from mission to mission, but researching everything in a Multiplayer match will be nigh impossible. Figuring out which technologies are most important to you is crucial, and a new invention could turn the tide of war.

Officers and heroes also play a crucial role in your strategy. They can be assigned to different ships, and their experience and rank will increase from mission to mission, so keeping them alive adds another level to how you react to situations. With a host of uniquely designed random events, large capital ships, and a decent Multiplayer mode, Hegemonia offers a gameplay experience that is as deep as it is fun to play.


The only drawback to having a system this deep is the fact that ease of use must be traded off. The game isn't intrinsically hard, but getting the hang of it will take longer than usual. It may even be enough to turn some casual gamers off early, but for those who stick with it, it will be well worth the reward.

Game Mechanics:

Hegemonia's control is reminiscent of the Homeworld style of control. Moving ships around in 3D on a 2D screen is no mean feat, and it seems the best way to do it is to first plot a course on a 2D grid, and then to set the Z-axis course. This easy method of transportation would have killed the game if it weren't included. Fortunately, it was implemented well and with a little practice, navigation becomes a breeze.

Though the genre of 3D RTS space games is relatively thin, it is easy to see that Hegemonia will make one of the higher watermarks. For those people who loved Homeworld but want an experience that is a little less action oriented and considerably deeper, Hegemonia is definitely your ticket.

-Snow Chainz, GameVortex Communications
AKA Andrew Horwitz

Minimum System Requirements:

Windows 98/2K/ME/XP, 600 MHz Processor, 128 MB RAM, 4X CD-ROM, 550 MB Free Hard Disk Space, 16 MB Video Card

Test System:

Windows 98, 1.4GHz AMD Athlon, GeForce 2 mx 32MB video card, 40 gig hard drive, 56x CD-ROM, 256MB DDR Ram, Sound Blaster Live! sound card, T1 Internet connection

Windows Hearts of Iron Windows Heroes of Might & Magic IV

Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated