Saturday, January 12, 2008

Black and White 2

I have been hooked playing a new game. Well its not new new, but new to me. It's called Black and White 2. I never player or heard of it before. I came across this game from watching Discovery Channel Rise of the Video Game show.  The game base is  similar to, Civilization, Age of Empire, and Empire Earth. At the same time it is very unique. The creators emphasise, that player has the power. You play as a god, and you have the power to be either a good, evil or any where between.  Playing as God you have total power, to harvest food, build buildings or have you followers do it them self. Another feature i like is that you can create huge armies. While other similar games limit your civilization to 200 or so people, In Black and White its unlimited.

The graphics are not bad at all, specially when you consider it is a few years old. The game also has a physics engine, to aid in make a realistic world. This is used when you throw objects around like, trees, rocks or even people. Another graphic element is how the world changes dynamically with weather and time. It also changes by how you play; If you a good God the buildings in the town will light up, with flowers and gold trim, But if your a bad or evil god the town will become dark and gloomy. How you place your buildings has allot to do with how the town will look. If they bare to close together the town becomes over crowed, slummy  city. 

The best feature in the game is the navigation and interface. Every thing is controlled by your mouse. The movements around the world is like Google Earth. Scroll wheel acts as a zoom, Holding a down the right mouse button, anchor the your godly hand allowing to push or pull away from that point. To tilt and rotate you use the scroll wheel button to act as an anchor. The left button is the cation button that allows you to rip up trees, build buildings or drag out roads. Building is unique since there is no need to go though a menu since, you can drag the blue print from other buildings.

This game is very cool, the only thing i could do with out is the Creature. In the game you get the animal that you have to train, to be good or evil. It can help build buildings, gather food or even take out small armies. You can also let him run wild, if you wish.

I played the demo two times. The first time as a good god, being as nice as i can. The second time i played as evil as possible, with huge armies conquering other towns. I found it harder to be evil, even though you were allowed to torcher people or sacrifice them. At first it was hard to over come the morality of it all. But after you slapped and threw some people around you become more use to it. Next thing you know your throwing boulders in your own town.

I have two videos to help show the coolness of the game. I don't think neither of then show the total power of the game. The first video is the preview trailer from the creator LionHead. The last one is just a you tube video of some game play and review by IGN.

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