In a time where computer rpg's are far and few between, there
comes a twist on the classic rpg style which implements the
strategy elements of another genre. Rage of Mages is this game.
Rage of Mages 1 first introduced a concept that kept the traditional
buying of goods, hiring partners, and going on adventures of role
playing games, but used a different technique. Rage of Mages
used a bird's eye view perspective when adventuring and battling
creatures. You controlled your characters by a more or less
point-and-click method. After a year of development, Monolith has
released Rage of Mages 2, which is built upon its predecessor's
If you’re looking for a RPG with outstanding graphics, Rage of
Mages 2 will immediately turn you away. While shopping in towns,
the graphics are fairly nice, but when adventuring, your characters
resemble that of square blobs (kind of like in Zelda 1). There is no
detail to the characters, including monsters. The scenery is
primarily composed of trees drawn of sprites, and primitive ground
and water textures. In today's day and age it’s almost impossible
to make a game successful without utilizing some sort of 3D
optimizations. Rage of Mages 2 has absolutely none.
The sound in Rage of Mages 2 becomes repetitive very quickly.
Cheap environmental audio effects like crickets are found on a
regular basis. When leading a unit, or character to a certain place
he/she always seems to repeat the same saying. For example, I
wanted to make a magic user so I chose the magician. When I told
him to move somewhere he said 'ok,' clicked on a monster for him
to fight, and he says 'ok,' told him to pick up an object and again,
he says 'ok.' I thought that it may have been just the magician who
does this, and I guess I was wrong, because the fighter also
repeats the same saying over and over again. Lousy
environmental sounds and generic sayings make the sound one of
the worst parts of this game.
Gameplay in a game like this is fairly easy to rate. There is no
gameplay. It’s as simple as that. You click, and your character
does it. The in-game menu's are set up nicely though, and easy to
navigate. In towns, it’s also easy to buy equipment, listen to
rumors, and visit the church. One thing I didn't like about this
game was that all the towns were EXACTLY the same. You visit a
town many miles away from the other one, and it looks identical to
the original one. Fighting monsters is as easy as click on it.
Depending upon whether or not your character is stronger decides
who is going to win the fight. There’s just not really much strategy
Rage of Mages 2 may be entertaining for the really, really die-hard
medieval battle strategist. After playing though the first couple of
levels in RoM2, I decided that it was time for it to visit the recycling
bin. Rage of Mages 2 offers nothing new to the old, decrepit style
of video games. Rage of Mages 2 is just about identical to the first
one in every single aspect. Graphics are the same, sounds are the
same, towns are the same, etc, etc.
Multi-player is the only semi-redeemable feature of this game. You
can choose from the generic multiplayer options, either ipx, tcp/ip,
serial, etc. You can create a character and then bring him on a
cooperative adventure with a couple other friends to battle
monsters and find treasure. You can also choose one of a bunch of
maps to play on. Even with friends, it's going to be hard to try to
play this game for more than an hour though.
Overall, Rage of Mages 2 is a weak attempt at trying to make a
good sequel out of a not so good original. Rage of Mages 2 offers
nothing new, nothing changed to make it a better game. I would
only recommend this game to the gamer who has not had a
chance to experience a couple of the better games like it. For
example, Warhammer was much better (as far as battle strategies
go). Should there be a RoM3, I hope Monolith will get on the
development team to be more up-to-date on their graphics, sound,
story, and gameplay situation.