by Josh Jensen
previewed on PC
The Royal Line of Succession
After the success of Majesty: The Fantasy Kingdom Sim and its aptly titled expansion Majesty: The Northern Expansion, many loyal gamers awaited a likely sequel. Unfortunately for said fans, almost a decade would fly by until this came to pass. The game’s developer, Cyberlore, was unable to find a publisher, and the franchise was placed in limbo.
Enter Paradox Interactive, who bought the intellectual rights to the game back in 2007, and created a well-received sequel, Majesty 2: The Fantasy Kingdom Sim, which was released late 2009. Though it took a couple of technological turns, the game’s new developer made it a point not to stray too far from what made the game special in the first place. While it incorporates many of the base elements from a typical real-time strategy game, the Majesty series throws in various RPG and simulation twists. As the King of Ardania, you are the quest-giver. Your job is to develop and level up other characters, known as heroes and lords, and entice them to do your bidding. You tell the heroes and lords what you want done, offer a monetary reward, and see who desires to carry out the task.
Making Kings is a Profitable Business
Around 5 months have passed since the sequel’s release, prompting Paradox to announce the release of its first expansion, Majesty 2: Kingmaker. The sequel will entail much of the same gameplay, but with a few new add-ons. As far as new content goes, the primary focus is an 8-mission campaign centering on the return of the goblins, led by the evil Grum-Gog. The goblins will hopefully provide a more challenging experience. One of the enemies, the Goblin Champion, can dual-wield crossbows. I won’t begin to try to figure out how he can be effective after he finishes firing both shots, but it looks cool, and I guess that’s where the “fantasy” comes in.
Kingmaker, which Paradox associate producer Mattias Lilja hopes to be the first of several expansions, also contains a few more goodies such as a map editor, which will include Paradox’s own tool set used to create maps. Players will be able to create their own missions and skirmishes, as most real-time strategists love to do. It is important to note that this is currently available for free download on the Majesty 2 website, so it is more of a convenience than a new feature. There will also be an in-game shop, which will include free items.
There will be a new playable character, the Ice Mage, who is skilled in both magic and melee combat. Better yet, you simply need to level up your standard mage to get him. The Ice Mage has new combos, with one particularly nasty combo in which he turns the enemy into a block of ice and stabs it with his spear. That sounds a lot more feasible than dual-wielded crossbows, once you get past the whole ‘turning into a block of ice’ part.
Coronation Coming Soon
In an interview with Lilja, we were told to expect a mid-February release. Obviously, since you are reading a preview for the game in the latter-half of February, this has not come to fruition. We are now told to expect a Q1 release, for $19.99. To make up for the delay, Paradox Interactive has made it easier than ever to purchase its product. You will not have to leave your comfortable office chair to obtain Majesty 2: Kingmaker, as it will be available on all major digital download distribution portals. If Grum-Gog lives up to his reputation, for just twenty bucks this expansion could be quite a deal.