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Cossacks II Gold

April 13th, 2005 by Troy Goodfellow · 1 Comment · Uncategorized

Cossacks II: Napoleonic Wars has gone gold. The first Cossacks series sold over two million copies, according to CDV. This is an amazing number for any strategy game, let alone a game series that is about formations, musket fire and little else.

But almost all those sales were in Europe. Cossacks barely made a dent in the American sales charts. I was one of those benighted colonials who never quite got the appeal of the first series and I’m not exactly excited about the prospects for a sequel. (Though American Conquest is better seen as the first sequel to the Cossacks games.) There were a lot of reasons for my disappointment, but more on those when I get my hands on the new version.

The new game, like the old, is selling itself with screenshots that are crammed with soldiers, all in tidy little rows. But as much as I played Cossacks I could never get my screen to look like theirs. Formations were confusing to make and the AI would often just send a trickle of troops into your empire where it would get overwhelmed even by undisciplined masses.

Cossacks II has a “conquer Europe” type game that looks vaguely like the one in use in Rise of Nations – still the best history themed RTS on the market. It works in RoN because of the way the basic RTS is integrated with the overlaid strategy game. Resources, wonders, ages, and all that are stuck on top pretty seamlessly. It remains to be seen how Cossacks II will do that.

My fear is that it will be a lukewarm Medieval: Total War type thing. You build up provinces and then fight with armies when you move from one to another. That didn’t make Medieval fun (it was the other stuff), so they need to do more than that to make me enjoy the sequel to an overrated RTS.


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