Developed and published by Tenco and localized by Fruitbat Factory, Eiyuu*Senki – The World Conquest is a title that I have been looking forward to for quite sometime. Combining tactical and management elements along with various historical figures reimagined as kawaii anime girls, this is a work that makes no concessions or contains any ambiguity about what it is. However, as quirky and offbeat as it is, does it manage to provide an adequate experience for your inner strategist? Allow me to break it down for you…
Disclaimer: This is a partially review and based off 40 hours playtime. Although, I have unlocked most of the features the game has to offer.
Genre: Tactical/Strategy role-playing game (SRPG)
Developer: Tenco, 5bp (Published and Localized by Fruitbat Factory for North America)
System: PlayStation 3 (PS3)
Omitting to the overall plot for the time being, the closest comparison that I can make to Eiyuu*Senki would have to be the works produced by Alice Soft – more specifically, the likes of Sengoku Rance or Grand Empire (Daiteikoku). You can even liken it to Civilization, if the other two are too far out there from recognition. Essentially, you start off as the ruler of one providence, a few unique units, and a very little funds until you can slowly build up momentum to topple other domains, and eventually, the entire world. Sadly, while the management aspect is scant and very simplistic to a degree, there is plenty of difficultly to be had in simply trying take other domains. With the game being turn-based in nature, you start off each turn with two action points (you do get more as you progress) you can use on any order. While hiring and replenishing troops will come at no cost besides the money you can spare, other events that populate the map will require the manpower and those with the ability. For example: to declare war on another domain, you will need a person with the appropriate amount of Negation skill (to be honest, I have no idea what the stats in the game are called, since there is no manual) and usually, the stronger the opponent, the more units you need to send the declaration. Of course, there are other events that also require a number of talent points or person to take the request and if you are successful, the event will play out and usually reward extra funds, items, or improve one of your units trust to grant them new abilities in combat. And of course, if declaring war, the war declaration will be successful and make the nation in question hostile toward you.
As you aggressively being to attack and take territory, on the enemy turn they will respond in kind, which will put you on the defending end. Before getting into what combat entails, it is important to note that units you used to attack or do events, can’t be used until your turn comes around, so if you happened to mismanage your units, the enemy can easily push you back and take a settlement they previously held or your own. And since income is determined by the settlements you have…you don’t want to risk any getting taken over. Other than that, whether you are attacking or being attacked, combat is a relatively simple process where you can deploy up to six units on a 4×4 grid with half belonging to you and the other where the opposition is. With different units containing different skills, attack range, and weaknesses – the rest is just a matter of taking down foes using the appropriate measures. To augment your units further, you can equip them with different items earned from events that will do stuff like raise their attack, defense, limit damage, and other aspects. Ultimately, the game offers a fair amount of customization and leeway on how to proceed, so you can make the game as easy or hard as you want depending on who you choose to go after and how. You can even go after two nations at once, if you are bold enough…but better to only work on one. Nothing worse than having to fight a war on multiple fronts.
Besides warring against different nations and meeting alternate versions of different historical faces (again, as moe anime girls), the game really does make the latter aspect shine as most of the people who will join your team have some enjoyable personalities and quirks. A few of my favorites would have to be Vlad Tepes representing Australia who is a bratty loli vampire and Marco Polo representing Mongolia..that has a very yandere obsession with Kublai Khan. Oh, and for all the Fate/stay night fans, King Arthur is yet again, a cute blonde and part of the core storyline, so yeah…enjoy that. Speaking of story, you play as the nation of Zipang (Yamatai) and its ruler Himiko looking to take over the world, but having trouble until a mysterious man (who you get to name) with no recollection of his past descends from heavens and after a few events, goaded into helping her out and possibly, become a key in helping him regain his memories. I can’t really comment anymore on it beyond the synopsis, since it just started to yield fruit (yup, even after conquering eight nations), so at loss for now on detailing it, except for the Illuminati acting as the big bad for the game.
The artwork isn’t anything to write home about, but for what it is, the game is very gorgeous looking. With Tenco being the company that was birthed by Littlewitch, the same character designers from Girlish Grimoire Littlewitch Romanesque and other properties appropriately show up here and seem to use less lolita looking models. Another pair of well-known figures, Hiroyuki Oshima and Nijine (aka Akito Matsuda) are the composers so if you are familiar with the soundtracks of Accel World and Sound Euphonium respectively, the same style and breadth of tracks are representative here as well. Fortunately, since the game does have a soundtrack ranging two disc (sold separately), there are plenty of tracks you will probably be tempted to load onto your music player of choice.
Overall, Eiyuu*Senki – The World Conquest is a very moderately challenging and entertaining title. Not having as much complexity as Crusaders Kings or simulation focused as Sim City, it is a game that brings those to elements into a happy medium so that the gameplay and silly concept manages to carry it all the way through. Not yet finished with the main path, I do hope upon completion, some sort of free play option becomes available to play as the other domains. Either way, I seemed to be in for a long game and loving every moment of it.
Pros: A lot of units to choose from and use, a bit of leeway in choosing your targets and declaring war, variety of events expanding upon new and old characters, simple yet fun battle system, minimal on the simulation aspect.
Cons: Game really doesn’t explain what the talent of units influence.