One of the things we really want to drive home in Elemental that we think will make it stand out is that a well equipped army is a big deal.
The Roman armies dominates much of Europe not because Romans were inherently better warriors but because they were well trained and well equipped.
Contemporary fiction tends to trivialize the significance of a non-industrialized society being able to train and equip 10,000 men with swords, plate mail, steel helmets, leather boots, etc. But in reality, being able to do that is an incredible achievement.
In Elemental, your first turns will not be about designing and producing fully armored troops. On the contrary, when you see mounted units equipped with plate mail and swords we want it to give the same feeling as when you see the Mongols in Civilization show up with tanks on your island. It’s a big deal.
Because people in Elemental are a resource, it creates a lot of interesting choices on the type of civilization you want to build. You can, for instance, focus on having mass armies of poorly trained and poorly equipped peasants. These hordes might be able to conquer the world or they might meet a civilization that has a much smaller force but one that is exquisitely trained and equipped. That battle, which players can optionally fight in full tactical detail, should be breathtaking.
And of course, what I jut describe doesn’t even touch on the fact that we are talking about a world with magical items and beasts of almost unimaginable might. As I’ve mentioned previously, someone gets ahold a dragon (and by a dragon I mean 1) that is a huge deal. Nobody is going to be running around with a “throng” of dragons.
If you’ve ever read Tolkien’s Silmarillion you get an idea of just how mighty some of the beings in Elemental will be. For those into that kind of thing, if you’ve ever wanted to know one of the inspirations for the Arnor and Dread Lords you can think of them as Maiar.
There are things lurking in the world of Elemental that are just breathtakingly powerful and rare. And rare, I mean that you may only encounter or hear of one maybe after months of playing the game. We’ll talk about that more later though.
The point being, the armies of Elemental are truly going to be yours. You will have ultimate control over what kind of army you want to have. We’re very excited.