Jahanzeb Khan
04 Dec, 2009

Napoleon: Total War Preview

PC Preview | Now you can change the tide at Waterloo.
The Total War series has made quite a name for itself over the years, as an RTS game that borrows heavily from historical scenarios, much like the Age of Empires series. It also has deep micromanagement features as well as social and economic dimensions. Today, we will be looking at Napoleon: Total War, the upcoming entry in the series.

Napoleon: Total War, as the name clearly suggests, will be based entirely on Napoleon and his military campaigns. The game will feature three main scenario campaigns taking place in Egypt, Italy and Europe, while the battles will be based on actual historical battles that took place during that era. Even the game’s tutorial mode will be providing gamers with a background story on Napoleon himself, instead of just explaining the game system. The game will also include an additional ‘optional’ battle event, none other than the famous Waterloo battle and of course gamers will be able to rewrite history and change the tide of that battle. Apart from the Napoleon campaign gamers will also be able to play as the coalition forces. In other words they will be able to play from the enemy’s perspective.

Multiplayer will be a major component in Napoleon: Total War. Not only will there be the standard multiplayer modes but the single player campaign mode can also be played as multiplayer, where other players will be able to ‘drop in’ and play as the opposing force. This will certainly make the single player campaign more entertaining for gamers who would rather battle a human opponent than the A.I.

Totally war.

Totally war.
The game engine is an evolution of what we saw in Empire: Total War. The lighting effects have been greatly enhanced and new particles effects and physics have been added. The game will feature a more elaborate and detailed weather system, as well as a real time and permanent environmental damage system. More detail has been given to the troops and the environments, the texturing looks nice and the lighting effects on them have been given a significant upgrade. Speaking of troops, there are now over 64 facial variations and 355 uniform types for them.

The detailed weather system, with a four season cycle system, will not be just a visual effect. It will have a major influence on the battles and troops. The game will feature around 6 nations and each nation will respond differently to the environment and the weather. So it is important to consider the season and weather when deciding the right mix of troops. Speaking of environments, the terrain will have a major influence on battles and the A.I will respond more realistically in terms of their battle formations and movement.

Generals have been given much more focus this time around and it builds on what we saw in previous Total War games. The game will feature a finite list of generals who are based on actual historical figures. Each general has unique abilities and attributes. For example some generals will be better at boosting the morale of their troops. Each general will have a sphere of influence and any troops and units within that area of influence will get some major bonuses. Generals can also inspire and rally their troops, which will enhance their battle performance and endurance. Generals play an important role as their defeat can greatly damage morale and once they die they can never return.

Some new warfare to play with.

Some new warfare to play with.

The Total War series has featured diplomacy in the past but in Napoleon: Total War there will be negative diplomacies as well, such as putting on certain conditions and restrictions in treaties. Also gamers will be able to loot towns and even conduct peaceful takeovers. This is important because the turn cycle in Napoleon has now been reduced to 2 weeks.

It is important to consider the environment and the availability of supplies and resources in a particular area. Especially when setting camp or base as the environmental and economic conditions can influence productivity. Some changes and additions to personnel have also been made. The game will feature agents who will serve as spies to gather information, spread propaganda in enemy territory and intercept enemy troop movements. Also on the battlefield there will be advisors who will give you tips and hints from time to time based on the situation.

Napoleon: Total War is shaping up to be quite a significant improvement over Empire: Total War, as it adds many new features that make the game more challenging and tactical. Look forward to a full review when the game comes out early next year.
Napoleon: Total War is shaping up to be another fine addition to the Total War series. RTS and history buffs should keep an eye on this one.

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4 years ago
Looks cool, but I still need to get round to playing Empire: Total War. I've wanted to put more time into it but its such a daunting scary game to get into. I still haven't finished dawn of war 2 or Medieval 2: Total War, so I don't think I'll need to rush out and get this; as much as I want to support this great Aussie studio.
4 years ago
i feel much the same about this one. Its not a new setting and ive barely gotten through empire (even with a decent quad6600 and 8800gtx it struggles on med) so i think ill hold out
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Australian Release Date:
  25/2/2010 (Confirmed)
  SEGA Australia
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