IT'S EPIC! Well at least, that's in the title, but to decide if Epic War 4 is truly epic, you need to play this title... hell this is the 4th installment of this game. It remains very popular on the flash game site Kongregate, and for good reason. At first glance you think this game is similar to a lot of other titles. You mass units across a horizontal battlefield, this is similar to a few titles.... only this one is better. The majority of games similar to Epic War 4 lack depth, they have a limited battlefield, or have a single dimension that you need to worry about like which of four units to deploy. Perhaps the title even has spells to manage... but the thing is Epic War 4 has depth, it has strategy, it has RPG elements, and it has a good deal of difficulty.

Honestly, this game really does roll a lot of things together. I mean hell, I discounted it at first glance, the first 2 or 3 levels played through like a breeze, but as I started having to forfeit levels, go back and get experience before progressing, I saw the difficulty. When I first won my battle by strategy instead of just pressing 'assault' I knew I had found a winner.

So to start, users are in control of heroes. These heroes have troops under their control, and you are trying to lay siege to individual castles on each stage. Every stage has different elements of difficulty, and need to be approached so. You start with only one hero, and only one unit type to go with your hero. This seems simple to start, and that's because it really is. The thing is tho, once you start to win battle's you accumulate gold. This gold is used for upgrades, as well as unlocking new units to deploy, new heroes, and upgrades to your own castle for during fights. Not only that, but you can only bring three heroes at a time, and those three have a limit of two unit types each during combat.

That sounds like a lot to think about, but it becomes very self-evident what types of units work well together. There is everything from pixies that will heal your troops as they press the war to succubi that fire flame jets that propel enemies upwards and deal massive AOE damage. Your hero options vary just as much, and they also need to be upgraded to make them live longer. Don't worry tho, if your hero dies in combat it does not spell instant defeat.

In fact quite the opposite. If and when your hero does die in combat, all it means is that the units he has control over can no longer spawn, and they can no longer be controlled until that hero has re-spawned. If a hero is not in combat he will regenerate health over time. This leads to battlefield tactics that imply both charges that spell certain doom for your hero in order to win the fight as well as intelligent retreats to mass more forces. Some heroes can attack from great distances, this means that holding a point close enough on the map to attack a castle but not to close allows an easy victory.

Did I mention you have control of devastating spells also?

That's right, you have control of spells you can purchase with gold and equip before combat. These can lead to devastation for your enemies. Everything is available from hails of arrows to temporarily invulnerability, it's all possible. This needs to be balanced in combat with the use of mana. Mana is regenerated over time, however at the start of a map you spawn with zero mana. Sometimes in order to push through enemy lines I had to sit back and defend until I had mana to cast spells of death and destruction over and over again.

If I seem like I am ranting and raving about how good this game is, it is simply because I am. It has a lot of features I really like, it has multiple levels of difficulty, and some stages required me to rethink what I was doing in order to win. The sound and music was well suited to the game, and it had a wide range of options and things to turn off or on accordingly. It got a little choppy when there were 50+ units all casting magic with full animations... but that can get turned down if you need it to be.

Overall I was very pleased with this game. Expect to get through at least 5 or 6 levels in 30 minutes, but then expect to put off whatever else you were doing to try and get through the rest of the game... A word of advice. When you reach the dragon and wooden horse respectively, take your time... it's not a race to win the map. Play smart and you can beat them.


Longevity: 4.5/5
Interface: 3.5/5
Addictiveness: 4.0/5
Sound: 3.5/5
Simplicity: 3.5/5

Overall: 3.8/5