Myth: The Fallen Lords
I've Been Thinking, You Know, and I've come up with a revolutionary way to review software. It's called the Cunningham Algorithm. It avoids the usual banter and describes games in a compact mathematical formula. In this case: Myth : = ((Magic Carpet -Carpet) + Homicidal Maniacs) Death.
Concise or what? Unfortunately, the Cunningham Algorithm™ doesn't pay very well, so for the time being you'll just have to bear with me while I run on for the next two pages. Ahem...
Myth is a multimetric real-time 3D strategy game for both Windows and Macintosh, and is capable of cross-platform network play. "Wake me up at the last paragraph," I hear you say. But hang on. What sets this game apart from all its 6,378,091 rivals is the way it plays. For instance, instead of looking down on the battlefield from above, you find yourself in one of those cool camera cranes that you get at Noel's House Party - you know, the ones where you can fly about and stick your face anywhere the action is. Zoom in, pan round and glide over the Magic Carpet-like landscape to check out the advancing enemy legions; pull back, rotate the camera through 360 degrees and see where they are in relation to your guys. Ridley Scott? He's got nothing on me.
Issuing your orders is just as effortless. Click on a single unit and direct him either to a new location or into battle with the enemy. Double-click and you'll highlight all similar units in the vicinity. You can also create hotkey groups, scatter them when they're under attack, withdraw them when they're losing and even rename them when you're bored. For die-hard tacticians, the game also includes ten formations that you can use to rearrange your armies. And you know what? It actually works. In no time at all you can have a vanguard of beserkers backed up by four box formations of warriors, two flanks of dwarves and a scattered line of archers raining death from the back row.
Real-time strategy, but not as we know it
Uniquely for this type of game, each one of the 25 maps sees you starting in the middle of the action: no sitting around for 20 minutes building factories, managing resources and worrying about how much money you haven't got. Myth picks you up, thrusts you into the middle of a ferocious brawl and leaves you to get on with it.
Although the game is hands-on, all your troops display a remarkable level of intelligence and can generally be relied upon to act on their own in a discerning manner. No more straying into the wilderness, taking on enemy divisions single-handed or walking backwards into a swamp. For those of you used to the imbecility of Command & Conquer - you'll be in for a shock.
Murder, death, explode
The game's designers wanted to create the most spoogesome 3D-world yet seen in a game of this type. For starters, the terrain is built on an electronic mesh so that the landscape can be changed dynamically. Set off a satchel bomb and watch the ground shake and ripple. Get your dwarves to lob their Molotov cocktails into a field and the grass turns black. Every part of scenery, from huge boulders to arrow heads, is tracked in 3D space. Which means that if you blow up an enemy unit, organs fly out and bounce off others - complete with shadows and splat noises.
The downside is...
Myth is let down by what can only be described as an overwhelming frustration whenever you play it for any length of time. So much attention has been paid to the technology that some of the fun element has suffered. When you start a new map you often find yourself hopelessly overwhelmed by the enemy forces, meaning there's no time for thinking - all you can do is pile in and hope you last the duration. Sure, instant action was one of the game's objectives, but at the expense of strategy and tactics? I think not. Mind you, if you get fed up playing against the computer, you'll find various multi-player options which allow you to go head-to-head over a LAN or the Internet where, typically, real enjoyment is to be had. Play Capture the Flag, King of the Hill, or a severed heads rugby tournament. Access to Bungie's own server is free, so that looks as though it'll be the place to meet... and don't forget, this may be your last chance to kill Macintosh owners before they become extinct.
Processor: PC compatible,
OS: Windows 9x, Windows 2000 Windows XP, Vista, Win 7, Win 8, Win 10.
Game Features:Single game mode