I love turn based games and I have played so many different games for a long time. I love even those games that are not great. Even those that could be considered bad, I can find some enjoyment in them. I played most of the classics Heroes, Fire Emblem, Disciples, Advance Wars, Master of Orion, Final Fantasy Tactics, X-Com and much more. Out of all of them, I think that Age of Wonders Shadow Magic is by far the best game out there. Even compared to the rest of the series. This might be just my opinion, but I will try to justify it.
The most important thing in this type of games for me is the diversity and the choices you are able to make during the tactical combat. This is what I like the most, the tactics. I like to think of the ways to have my troops fight without losing anyone. I like to imagine, position, and place my troops in a way to minimize the losses. Age of Wonders Shadow Magic is one od the few games that let me have this feeling. What makes this even better is the fact that all of your units gain experience, level up, and gain new skills. This makes everything even more exciting when you can get even more attached to different armies.
This is another thing I like about Shadow Magic, the army formations. The game is played on a hexagonal field and more than one of your units can attack the enemy. This allows for some amazing tactical choices, as you can replace units that have fought a battle with fresh ones. You can choose who will fight who, who will be the first to attack and that the most damage.
One of my favorite thing about Shadow Magic combat are the siege battles. Especially when you are the one defending. This is where the game shines for me, as it raises everything on a much higher level. You can position archers, siege machines, spell casters in a way that are most beneficial for your defense.
Age of Wonders Shadow Magic is a game that has a large number of playable races. I am not overstating this fact, the game has fifteen different races. All very unique and interesting.
I will just say that the proper way to play the game is with Unofficial Patch 1.5. This patch is my recommendation as it adds a lot of new units and abilities to the game, making each race even more unique.
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