General Crespin

Rise of Legends: Remembering the Abandoned Sequel to Rise of Nations

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As much as I enjoy Rise of Nations, the second game we got from Big Huge Games is the RTS that stole my heart.


The myopic camera makes gameplay so frustrating over time, but in small doses I can't get enough of the unique style.


The thematic difference between each of the three nations captivated me. The clockwork soldiers and steampunk merchants of the Vinci, the mystical castles and soaring dragons of the Alin, the flying stone temples and stomping stone giants of the Cuotl.


The way each nation played differently was a lot of fun. The sound design and soundtrack were similarly styled to Rise of Nations and worked just as well. The camera that could be freely rotated.


I wish BHG had not been so strongly focused on attempting to build a competitive scene. StarCraft 2 was announced in May 2007, a year after Rise of Legends' release in May 2006. Perhaps BHG felt they had an opening. I've never seen anything approximating a post-mortem.


Rise of Legends  inspires and fascinates me the way Morrowind does. The unique world, the history only hinted at in passing.


It feels like BHG really could have had something great- again!- if they had taken their time to iron out gameplay and technical issues, opened up the game to the community and modding scene.


I was a participant in the HeavenGames strategy gaming community from before Rise of Nations was announced until well after BHG moved on from Rise of Legends  The failure of Rise of Legends to succeed has always rankled and tonight I needed to vent. I needed to remember.

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Thanks for mentioning HeavenGames! I completely forgot about that forum. I think that poor RoL never had a chance because RoN got a lot of players interested in historical games that didn't transfer. I also remember being disappointed by the fourth race disappearing from launch and the game struggling to be completed with a lot of compromises. 


My opinion is it would be worth re-releasing it. I'm delighted to see ~700k sales of RoN on SteamSpy and I don't see why RoL couldn't achieve a worthwhile fraction of that.

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