Date of publish: 19/11/2020 17:53 CET
The quote on the back of the box for Alexander (from the Roman poet Virgil) is “fortune favors the bold.” Well, sometimes fortune doesn’t. In fact, sometimes fortune’s idea of “bold” is shoving your head into a toilet and flushing repeatedly. I’m sure that’s not what the developers intended for this real-time romp through the ancient Levant, but alas, that’s what they’ve delivered.
Alexander the game is based on Oliver Stone’s Alexander (the epic, critically snubbed movie), and seems to follow the latter’s lead in chartering high production value, then locking it in a straightjacket. This is real-time without the strategy, a pretty history hack with crummy controls, and it’s really too bad, because the new hybrid 2D/3D engine (developed for the forthcoming Cossacks 2) looks great. Oliver Stone may have a point when he says his movie was too morally ambiguous for Americans, but a similar appeal to avant garde game design won’t explain Alexander the Sprite and his battle fodder wading tactlessly into melee after melee despite your best efforts to save their witless necks. Picture Mongolian swarms of armored soldiers lurching across attractive 3D maps, barely responding to your increasingly frantic clicks — if only they’d called it a Magic Wand of Maybe instead of a mouse…