Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Sayonara Shogun 2

Had a chance to watch the recent Total War: Shogun 2 trailer that is out and I have to admit it looks good but I won't be buying it... Why? Read on young Samurai!

I've loved the Total War games since I first picked up Medieval 1 many years ago, I skipped Shogun the first one because I have no interest in Japanese history, it's not that I don't care about it, but simply I have too much other historical interests to keep myself occupied with. M1 and Rome were amazing games, loved them to bits and played the crap out of them. Hell I was playing Rome as recently as early last year and enjoyed it, but then I'm a Roman military fanatic so  I have a natural bias towards it. But apart from the setting of Shogun which I could get around why wont I bother? Well to be brutally honest it just looks over complicated from what is supposed to be a battle simulator. From talent trees for your agents to trade routes and research it just adds more and more to the game. I thought Medieval 2 had the perfect balance of depth and warfare without getting overly bogged down in micro management, hopefully you can set the PC to intelligently manage a lot of those in Shogun whicih may change my mind.

The other reason I'll be skipping Shogun 2 is bugs... After picking up Empire and playing it I honestly just got grinded into despair with the game due to the bugs and some of the 'realistic' effects (troops hiding behind flimsy stone field boundary, cannon balls bouncing off it repeatedly and it doesn't even crack), add this to the sluggish nature of the game and the micro management that was needed and I never got far on it before turning it off.

I'll wait and see how people react to Shogun 2 before making my final decision but I feel I'll be waiting for Rome 2 or another ancient themed (gimme Mesopotamia) before making a Total War purchase again. I wont jump to buy it like I did with Empire as the subsequent re-reviews noted that the game wasn't all they believed at the time and I'll hold off until at least 3-4 months after release.


  1. There was once a dream that was Rome II Total War. You could only whisper it. Anything more than a whisper and it would vanish... it was so fragile. And I fear that it will not survive...

    If Rome II comes out I’m taking some vacation time, plain and simple! Rome rates as one of my top (game) addictions ever. Absolutely loved it. I also re-installed it and re-played it recently. Empire was meh, and like you I skipped the first Shogun. I’ll give the new one a try, however, just to see, but all roads lead to Rome. Can’t wait.

  2. Agreed 100%. It had a perfect feel to it and while there is certainly aspects I'd take from later games (in particular military or commercial cities) they prety much nailed it.