your PSP the gift of combat this holiday season. by
1, 2005 - Proving
that good things do come in small packages, The Lord
of the Rings Tactics offers lots of deep gameplay
that will stimulate the imagination in a huge world
that will stagger the imagination. Imagine that!
back in the Middle Earth. Play as either the Fellowship
or the evil Host of Mordor as you battle it out in
locations such as the Plains of Rohan, Helms Deep
and Misis Tirith. There are some 50 missions to compete
that require exceptional strategy skills. Your units
will level-up automatically after successful completion
of each mission. You do have the option to purchase
upgrades for special attacks and spells but money
is hard to come by. The war will be won with brains
rather than brawn.
of the Rings Tactics is not a mere revisiting of the
movie battles, it incorporates a new storyline as
well as some location, battles and characters that
weren't in the cinematic trilogy. Fans of the book
will be rewarded with familiar characters, both main
and secondary ones. There are cutscenes describing
the events leading up to the war but unless you're
really up on the movies you won't know what's really
going on. That knowledge is not of the utmost importance
but it would certainly clarify a few things.
such as Gandolf, Aragorn, Legolas, Balrog, Sauron
and Frodo are all here but they are too evenly matched
to make any particular character stand out. Characters
that have uniquely powerful traits end up sharing
their skills with other members of their unit. It's
well balanced but it kind of takes the fun out of
acquiring or experimenting with different characters
since they are so much the same. Regardless of how
powerful your enemy is you can send a less powerful
character to block their path. It's not very realistic
but when it works to your benefit you probably won't
be complaining too loudly.
allows you to customize your favorite character with
more powerful weapons, armor and magical spells, but
as I already mentioned these things cost money and
it's in short supply. You will more likely find yourself
making purchases of one-time use items such as health.
Not only is it cheaper but also necessary to stay
the majority of RPG strategy games you don't get to
travel through the map under your own volition. This
precludes you from locating bartering shops along
the way. The only way you can purchase upgrades is
through the interface. It's not very exotic but it
speeds things up. At the same time you just move your
unit to the next mission area and take things from
armies will position their troops along the grid simultaneously.
Once this is done the two teams will then enter the
battle phase, also at the same time. This not only
speeds up the process but offers a different twist
to the regular style of gameplay that we're accustomed
to. This way you will have to guess at your opponent's
placement of troops and take the necessary precautions
as to where you place your defenses. During the planning
phase you can target a specific character and go after
him but you'll probably find a lot of weaker ones
blocking your path. What comes around goes around.
four-player mode is a great addition and will certainly
beef up the replay value. Players have to create their
own army with the points allotted them. Each game
can be customized as point allotment, time limit and
the degree of leveling. With such options each game
will have its own challenges and rewards. The biggest
reward is that each game has the potential to feel
new. The variations will become less of a novelty
as familiarity eventually wears you down.
this game is not a stunner but the characters and
locations are easily recognizable. The maps are big
and offer a lot of combat, though the environments
aren't as interactive as they are in some PC strategy
games. Go figure. The music and sound effects are
culled from the movie. There is some frame stuttering
and some of the environments are too dark making it
difficult to see all of the details.
of the Rings Tactics is a real portable pocket rocket.
You'll never get this much action out of your cell