Great Conqueror: Rome is a strategy game that is primarily focused on the historical events that were related to the Romans.
The game features the Punic Wars, Spartacus Uprising, the Conquest of Gaul, and more – allowing players to recreate those iconic conquests in their own different ways.
There are four game modes and multiple stories to choose from, which includes both playing as and against the Roman empire. On top of everything, you can recruit historical legends to your legions such as Caesar, Spartacus, and Hannibal too, not just randomly generated commanders.
Everything that makes a good strategy game seems to be present here, so is worth your time? Let’s find out.
The gameplay of Great Conqueror: Rome is a bit complicated and even the tutorial does not do a very good job at explaining how things work.
The general goal is obvious – you have to embark on a conquest of destroying every enemy and taking over as many territories as possible.
The game is split into different chapters that each cover a specific battle of the Roman wars and the game acknowledges that a story has been completed once you finish the related tasks.
The player has to form legions of soldiers and assign good generals to them, and then you can either play the game manually or use the auto-play setting which automatically makes the necessary moves required to advance the campaign. Often times you will need to both defend and attack at the same time, so paying attention to the entire map is essential.
The other game modes feature different scenarios and even different alliances to play as, but the gameplay remains the same aside from changes in the difficulty.
As with any other free-to-play strategy game, it becomes increasingly difficult after a certain point and it gets impossible to beat unless dozens of hours are spent on grinding or real-world money is spent on microtransactions. Popular historical figures like Caesar are locked behind a paywall too, which makes it impossible to play as them if you’re not willing to pay for it.
To make matters worse, the friendly AI is often stupid and ruins your strategies since the game does not allow the player to control every single unit at all times. This leads to issues in capturing cities or successfully defending your troops – which, combined with the pay-to-win structure, destroys any point of playing a strategy game.
Also, the game comes with a separate section where you have to desperately level up your characters and legions so that you can keep up with the unfairly increasing difficulty.
It’s not a boring game and you might even end up having some fun with it, but it’s not good enough to warrant spending a hundred hours or real-world money on, since it sacrifices its credibility as a strategy game to force players to resort to microtransactions.
The graphics of the game are pretty decent and it has a good art style in which it recreates imagery from the iconic Roman battles, and the historical figures like Spartacus look good too in their character portraits.
The animation is not as fluid or detailed as it could have been, so that ends up feeling a little awkward. But for a strategy game of this kind, the lack of high-quality animations would not take away from the experience if the game itself wasn’t so repetitive, as some of the best strategy games throughout time have had minimal detail in this department.
The UI is generally well-designed for a game that is crammed with content, some of which feel unnecessary. But it’s very confusing at times too, since certain important options are very difficult to spot. For example, I looked for a resume button and it took a minute or two to realize that the resume button is just a save icon on the bottom left that allows you to continue from where you left off.
The polish is decent and I did not run into any issues myself. However, players often report that the game, despite signing into Facebook or Google Play, tends to delete their progress randomly. It seems to be an infrequent issue, but it’s still there nonetheless.
The sound design is very generic. It’s not bad by any means, but it’s only there to accompany the gameplay and won’t make things feel like they have an awkward silence. None of the tunes are memorable though and the sound effects aren’t as satisfactory as they could have been either for a game that is all about conquering the world.
Great Conqueror: Rome is a mediocre strategy game that is undoubtedly pay-to-win.
This holds it back from being a good experience and since it adds nothing to the genre that better games don’t already have, it’s not worth the grind that the player would have to go through just to complete its story campaign.