Real-time strategy (RTS) games aren't common sights on consoles. The genre has often traditionally been kept on PC, and while titles like Halo Wars 2 work wonderfully with a couch-and-controller setup, many other games struggle to do the same. Fortunately, Warparty, the latest RTS title to officially hit the market, is a game that rises above the aforementioned issues and delivers a compelling experience, albeit not without some issues. Even so, the game is great overall, especially when you consider its low price of just $25.
Strategy set in the ancient past
Warparty is set in what can only be described as "the Stone Age but with magic," where you have the ability to control one of three different factions, each with their own campaign: the caveman-like Wildlanders, the nature-dominating Vithara, and the undead-raising Necromas. Each group has their own strengths and weaknesses that make them suit different play styles. The Wildlanders are best suited to infantry fans who like a balanced mix of offense and defense, the Vithara utilize their magic in order to tame and control tanky, defensive-favoring dinosaurs, and the Necromas are all about relentless aggression with their zombie hordes. None of the factions are unbalanced, and each of them have tools that can be used to counter each other.
In terms of strategy mechanics, the game feels rather spammy. Unlike Halo Wars 2, where things like unit positioning and upgrades play a huge role, the majority of Warparty's strategy can be boiled down to two factors: how fast you're making units, and who you're telling them to attack. This isn't necessarily a bad thing; many popular classics used this type of design. However, it's personally not what I look for in an RTS. In addition, it often feels like Warparty struggles to mechanically separate itself from the games its inspired by. Even so, the game is ultimately fun, and you'll love it if the "unit spam" RTS archetype is your preferred style.
When it comes to visuals, Warparty looks great. It has a cartoony aesthetic that makes it stand out significantly from other RTS games, and the color scheme is nice and vibrant, helping to make it easy on the eyes. Each of the three factions has a unique look, too, which really helps distinguish them from one another. For example, the Wildlanders often wear fur clothing and tribal garb, while the Necromas are decked out in evil-looking cloaks and armor made out of bones. The music is pretty great as well, adding satisfying atmosphere to the gameplay.
How does it run?
For the most part, Warparty ran pretty well on my Xbox One X, although it did noticeably drop some frames in moments where a lot was going on. Considering that the game is stylized and really shouldn't be putting any real stress on the Xbox One X at all, it's most likely an optimization issue. It's important to note, though, that the drops don't effect gameplay that much. They're annoying, but also uncommon, and you'll only ever lose 5-10 frames-per-second (FPS). Overall, Warparty doesn't run flawlessly, but it performs smoothly most of the time.
Should you buy Warparty?
Warparty is, at its core, a really solid callback to classic RTS titles that has a unique setting and enjoyable, creative presentation. It doesn't bring anything new to the table in terms of gameplay, and the performance could be better, but even so it's still a great RTS game that's absolutely worth checking out.
- Solid gameplay.
- Awesome setting.
- Great presentation.
- Excellent price.
- Doesn't innovate gameplay-wise.
- Performance could be better.
At $25, Warparty is an absolute steal for any RTS fan. Considering you get three factions to use, three decently-sized campaigns, multiplayer, and a mode that lets you battle an AI player, you get what you pay for and then some.
Warparty is available now on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and Steam for $25.
Xbox accessories you'll love
While you're checking out Borderlands 3, take a look at these awesome Xbox accessories to enhance your experience.
Talon PDP Xbox media remote ($20 at Amazon)
The Talon PDP Xbox media remote is a step above on your console.
Xbox One S vertical stand ($10 at Amazon)
Stand your Xbox One S upright with this stand.
Xbox One X vertical stand ($6 at Amazon)
Grab this compatible vertical stand to save space.
Controller Gear controller stand ($13 at Amazon)
Display your Xbox One controller with this licensed stand.
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