September 19, 2021

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Review: Humankind - Gamer.no

Review: Humankind – Gamer.no

civilizationThe series for years occupied a close monopoly on this historical type of all-wheel drive strategy. When the big game number six in the series came out nearly six years ago, we could report that she was very good with the game, but lacking in inspiration.

After several years of waiting, the human race game now comes, a game made by the creators behind it endless space And endless legend. Many expect humanity to be the successor to civilization, but can the newcomer catch up with one of the world’s greatest hegemons?

Unique and different in the best way


Check it out so cool! Photo: Andreas Bjørnbekk / Gamer.no

You are not completely shocked at how different the human race is with everything else the first time you play the game. Not only is the visual style soft and colourful, in a style relatively similar to that of Civilization VI itself, but the landscapes, buildings, soldiers, and oceans are almost as if the latter have been sniffed. The same goes for other aspects, such as how to move your troops, how to erect buildings and monopolize certain wonders, and how to collect points to gain new political or religious progress. In that sense, it’s very easy to get into the human race if you’re already a paid strategy player, but don’t think that’s the case.

Humanity emerges as a civilization that arose in a parallel universe, where the foundation is quite similar while the details diverge. Since the graphics in Civilization VI are so colorful and kid-friendly to me, it’s more edible and artistic in the human race. While civilization allows us to send small groups of soldiers against other small groups, the same thing happens in the human race, but in the latter one can gather forces to create small armies, fight against other armies, and animate them in turn-based battle. It can be continued over several rounds. The small change doesn’t make the matches anything particularly cinematic, but at least we’re getting a refresh of the tactics that makes the match scenes a little game in itself. These are the changes that may seem small, but together they make a big difference.


Who does not love miracles? You can now build as many as you want – as long as you are the first, you have finished building the previous, and you have enough points. Photo: Andreas Bjørnbekk / Gamer.no

Very nice start

Perhaps the most revolutionary thing about the human race is the way species and cultures deal with it. Because in almost every other strategy game you choose a culture or a nation in the beginning, you start in the human race as a society without a society. At first, you don’t do much other than collect food and other primitive things, but once you get enough Era Stars through certain achievements, you’ll soon be able to choose one of about ten unique cultures. This happens every time you achieve enough Stars of the Age in each time period, and although the human race, like civilization, uses dates and names such as “Ancient times”, “Middle Ages” and “Early modern times”, your cultural progression Depends on whether you have collected enough stars (achievements).

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men – That’s big men – You can’t just decide when You can imagine jumping forward in time (as long as you’ve achieved the goals), but it’s entirely up to you whether you want to continue in the culture you started with, or whether you want to transition to one that belongs to the time period you are in. How do you go from the rule of the ancient Phoenicians to the Romans, the Romans back (but like the Byzantines), Italy, etc. Or what can you take from ancient Egypt to Carthage, the Goths, Venice and Japan? The choice is entirely up to you, as long as you get your first choice of course – each culture option excludes all other options in the time period, and only one faction can be a particular culture at a time.


These illustrations evoke passion. Photo: Andreas Bjørnbekk / Gamer.no

The culture you play at all times presents unique variables related to resource earnings, but is also completely separate from the units and buildings that historically belonged to the culture. The entire system is simply stunning, and probably the most exciting approach to the faction system in any 4X game I’ve seen.

It all goes up to a hundred when we see how beautiful the artworks in the game are. The buildings, units, cultures, and events all come with hand-drawn illustrations, which makes the user interface – despite the fact that the partially transparent squares aren’t atmospheric – one of the most important parts of the game. I love every time I pick a culture and see how it’s depicted, the same goes for a beautiful tech tree or every illustration of a building.


This is your faction screen. Photo: Andreas Bjørnbekk / Gamer.no

A completely different scale

There is always something special about seeing your kingdom spread across the landscape, whether it’s through the colors or the changes of the city. This phenomenon also applies to the human race. Here, your city is literally spread over the landscape as you build and develop, in other words in the same style as civilization. The human race is still doing a better job when it comes to playing by the scale. The map of the world is drawn in such a way that the great plains, cliffs, and highlands appear more clearly than in civilization; Where the latter can often feel cramped, the landscape in mankind is elongated and beautiful, and it is better to have extra space to play on it. This means, among other things, that the minimalist-style graphics work better than other games, because the basis and the way the world is drawn on its part is much more realistic.

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Matches can be really big, and take off especially later in the match. Photo: Andreas Bjørnbekk / Gamer.no

This philosophy of making things a little more modest and a little more complex than what we’ve seen from the main competitor permeates humanity, and it’s simply what makes it so exciting. Because here too we get pseudo-random events that affect your kingdom, but where through your own choices you can control the direction your community goes. Each such choice pulls your society in a somewhat religious direction, more or less open., and more or less authoritarian. Not only is this a great role-playing mechanism, but your community will also stand in contrast to other communities, and the values ​​your community divides into by defining, among other things, the type of relationship you will have with your neighbours.

You will of course find out the other common mechanism of action in the human race; Tree of technology, political progress and religious aspects. As in other strategy games, there are resources that go with each of these mechanisms, and how many of these you get per round depends on what buildings you own or what you find on your way.


Look how elongated and lifelike everything looks! Photo: SEGA

However, perhaps the most important resource in the game is the influence resource, which is required when you want to create new cities or choose the direction your community should go through legislation. Speaking of city foundations: here, humanity is practically revolutionizing how to move forward. Where in Civilization you can create new cities just by deploying your own settlers, any unit in the human race can create an outpost that can later be upgraded to cities through points of influence. If you don’t want a completely new city, you can leave the outpost, but “connect” it to an already existing city, so that the original city expands. This is totally cool, and it’s a way to expand your territory without making things totally blow up or making you feel stranded.


Diplomacy is good, but it could have been better. Photo: Andreas Bjørnbekk / Gamer.no

some flaws

The human race innovates in most areas, but remains very close to the normal rules of the game. Diplomacy is not universal to be proud of, even if it seems somewhat more complicated than it was in civilization. This is because you change the options you have depending on whether or not you are allied with your neighbor, so that while “normal” conditions can enter into trade agreements, allies can enter into customs unions. It’s tough, but I would like the business relationship itself, the goods that were exchanged and how it affected the economy to be modeled in a more complex and realistic way.

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I also think it’s strange how restrictive the peace agreements are. On the whole, one fights until the opponent loses the support of the people to continue the war, but it is done very literally. The war ends when the opponent surrenders, and even if you want to continue, you are not allowed to. This means that you do not have the opportunity to conquer more cities than you have already conquered, which is simply too short-sighted.


Nice little town founded on an island. A little holiday paradise, if you will. Photo: Andreas Bjørnbekk / Gamer.no

At the same time, I encountered a number of errors related to buttons not working, which do not necessarily ruin the game, but certainly spoil the mood.


Create your own leader! Photo: Andreas Bjørnbekk / Gamer.no

In addition, I wish the buildings – which do well otherwise – would be more prominent in the world. There is an incredible amount you can find to build into the human race, but only regions and wonders show themselves on the world map. I miss seeing the canals running through my town, the water mills, the blacksmiths, the watchtowers, or all the other smaller buildings we have the chance to set up. Not only is it sad that they don’t exist, but it can make it a little confusing to figure out what you’ve built, or what you should build next.

Finally, the fact that the architecture of your city changes with the culture you play is something I love, but unfortunately your “castle” or headquarters remains the same as always. I think this is strange, and I think that at least one should have had the opportunity to build a new headquarters if one had converted from a Phoenician to a Roman. Perhaps the “old” castle could have been turned into a kind of “cultural heritage” building that gave status or something like that. Regardless – if you played Cromani, I would of course prefer to build and look at a Roman palace.

conclusion

If every element of the chain of civilization can be described as an evolution, then the human race can simply be called a revolution. Not necessarily because he is completely different, but because in some key areas he dares to think in a new way. It’s easy to fall in love with the great culture development mechanism, and the same can be said about the great illustrations, the rather elegant user interface, the large and open world map, and the way you expand your empire.

Even the way you fight is becoming more player dependent, although you can always click ‘automate’ if you don’t have the strength to precisely manage your soldiers. The game is simply more complex without being difficult to learn, and it found a good balance between a traditional 4X game and one that was clearly inspired by a deeper series like the ones from paradoxthe games. In addition, the music is mostly beautiful, somewhat varied, but sometimes completely magical, and changes according to the time you live in and the culture you play in.

Don’t expect a great strategy with historically deep mechanics, but rather look forward to an experience that took something familiar and cherished, made it a little more modern, a little prettier, a little more exciting and a little new, and created a very solid foundation for a series that I hope to succeed in and bigger over time. Humanity is just getting started, but it is already much more innovative and inventive than the bots that have held the throne for decades.