Age of Wonders III Screenshot 1
Age of Wonders III Screenshot 2
Age of Wonders III Screenshot 3
Age of Wonders III Screenshot 4
Age of Wonders III Screenshot 5
0
2
Edit

Age of Wonders III

Age of Wonders III is the long anticipated sequel to the award-winning strategy series. Delivering a unique mix of Empire Building, Role Playing and Warfare, Age of Wonders III offers the ultimate in turn-based fantasy strategy for veterans of the series and new players alike! Create an Empire in your own Image Rule as one of 6 RPG style leader classes: Sorcerer, Theocrat, Rogue, Warlord, Archdruid, or the tech-focused Dreadnought. Research powerful skills unique to your class to develop your empire and arsenal. Choose your allies from among the six main races - Humans, High Elves, Dwarves, Orcs, Goblins and Draconians - and fantastical monster dwellings. Explore and Exploit a Living Fantasy World Explore a rich fantasy world that is more detailed and alive than ever with over 50 location types to raid for treasure.
Promote for 50G

Game Discussion

Review by Anonymous
Review from Steam

This is a fantasy wargame with city building. I find it to be the closest thing to the venerable, now ancient but classic in the genre, Master of Magic. If you have the good sense to like that game, then you are in the right place. The game can be quite challenging on the harder difficulties, so be warned.
I am actually writing this review because I frankly don't understand the gist of the complaints about the game I see (paraphrased below with my rejoinders):
-"I was looking for X style RTS" - This is not an RTS. It is turn based.
-"I was hoping for something like Civilization" This game is not Civilization, though you will find similarities. This is a fantasy wargame. Civilization always left me unsatisfied when it came to actual combat and the jilted unit choices.
-"The combat is boring" - If you don't like turn based tactical combat...then you are in the wrong place. If you do, then there are numerous tactical options and combinations available between spells, abilities, and terrain choices. I frankly don't understand the hate. This is not a 3D shooter if you are looking for some kind of adrenaline high.
-"The city building is tedious" - The city building has quite a few options actually, but without spoiling it, I will say that a lot of it still comes down to the goal of domination. If you are looking for Sim City or Banished, again, you are in the wrong place. Make no mistake, your cities ultimately exist to help you dominate the map.
-"The game steals my information/I have to login" - I have used the tiny little box that says "guest account" so I dont log in with all the nonsense. I've had zero problems.
-"Has problems with Windows 10" - I have played this on windows 8 and windows 10 with two separate machines and had zero problems.
Now, please bring on AOW 4 with more better awesomeness.

Review from Steam

In my younger years (I'm 46), I was a hard-core gamer. Now-a-days, not so much. However, this game pulled me in and makes me want to play all the time. I think about it constantly. I haven't felt like this in many, many years.

Review from Steam

If I was going to describe Age of Wonders III with just one sentence, it would go like this: it has everything I could probably ask for in a game, and as a result, it feels like it was designed specifically for me.
There are five elements to gameplay that form the appeal for me:
Combat
Exploration
Progression
Variety
Replayability
(Exploration is a bit hard to explain on its own, so I'll go into it when it comes up.)
To start, combat: the core component of Age of Wonders III's gameplay - the thing you'll be doing for most of the game. In the 250 hours I've played, there has never been an occasion where I found one of the fights to be dull. You have an option to auto-resolve combat, but aside from instances where my scouts get caught by a wandering party, and I cannot save them, I've never really felt a desire to use this feature. With all of the hundreds of unit types in the game - each with their own abilities, resistances, type advantages, visual designs - and the range of spells, enchantments, and battlefield layouts, even the lowest risk engagements are fun to do. And on top of one-on-one battles with your army versus an opponent's, there is the ability to take multiple armies into a single fight for large-scale wars, with up to 42 units in total on the field. It is currently my favorite combat system of any game, beating out my previous favorite title, Dead Cells, and it'll be a while before I could reach a point where it begins to feel repetitive.
Next comes progression. I get a great sense of satisfaction from seeing something grow and change over time in an RPG, sandbox game, or whatever else. In this game I like to zoom out to the overview map and see the extent of my empire's influence in the world, and take screenshots for comparison later. But beyond an obvious part of gameplay like that, there is a sense of incremental growth in everything you do. Each and every one of your units has veterancy, where they're able to gain experience and increase their rank to acquire higher stats and additional traits. Some units also have my favorite trait, Evolve, where they'll transform into a new, stronger unit upon reaching Gold rank, and can be trained up once more with new benefits. Along with that comes your leader and heroes, which level up RPG-style and can choose unique perks from an expanding list of upgrades. As they all grow, you'll clear out structures on the map, absorb independents into your empire, and research new types of units, letting your military strength morph and develop so that you can challenge even tougher opponents, with even more armies. Even exploration takes on a visible form of progression, as you can enable an option in match settings to cover the map in a layer of clouds that lets you see how far out you've ventured into the world.
Lastly, let's discuss the variety and replayability of the game together, as they go pretty hand-in-hand. So one of the most impactful choices you're able to make is picking a leader. There are six race and six classes to choose from - nine and seven, respectively, with the DLCs - when deciding a leader, and these choices dictate what types of racial and class units you can produce. That may not sound like a lot, but the combination of your race and class choice can create synergies (mainly in the case of race with class units). This means that even if you've tried every race and class in the game, you'll still find small differences in playstyle if you play one race with multiple classes, or vice-versa. A High Elf Hunter will be able to deal full damage with their ranged attack at maximum range, meaning they'll be able to soften up foes more easily than if they were a Human Hunter. A Tigran Apprentice gets Magic Bolts (fire/spirit damage) instead of Fairy Fire (shock/fire/cold), making a Tigran Sorcerer more effective against Necromancer leaders than anyone else. These factors affect which units you'll want to prioritize producing, as well as how you approach fighting them, leading to variation in engagements of the same nature.
That creates a huge degree of replayability, and along with that the game shines with its multiple game-modes, including what is probably the most picked choice: the random map generator. I'd say that a majority of people primarily play Random Map, and there's good reason for it. You are given an on-demand means of generating endless matches to play through, with a lot of control over customizing the settings for a match to make whatever type of game you'd like. I love starting at the very bottom and building myself up to the top over a long period, so I give myself the weakest starting army, a settler unit in place of an established city, double the costs of research and city growth, and I burn slowly through a match over days and weeks. But, at the same time, I could set it up to do the opposite: give everyone late-game units at the beginning, and lower the relevance of non-combat elements to a minimum to focus mostly on warfare. You could lower the frequency of resource structure and make territory control a larger factor, or increase the generation to speed up production. Flood the map with independent cities and have lots of variety in your military, or just turn them off completely and rely on your starting race; the same for dwellings of NPC factions. Plus there's multiple victory conditions, if you tire of winning by just killing the other leaders. You can do so much with it, but what I will say is that it does require plenty of experimentation and good knowledge of the game's mechanics to get the balance right, so if you play random maps I suggest sticking to default settings. My one criticism of the RMG is that you cannot set up matches with a singular climate, such as an all-Arctic or all-Tropical map, because it appears that none of the map settings can be set to "zero" on the sliders.
A few other miscellaneous things to mention: character customization, always a nice feature; one of the best video game soundtracks in my opinion; lots of Workshop content; pretty low demand in terms of system requirements, so most people should be able to run it.
To round this off, I want to quickly cover the expansions (Eternal Lords and Golden Realms). If this game sounds enticing to you, I'd recommend buying it with the DLCs together. You can get all three on a sale for less than the base game at full price, and development ceased years ago, so it'll be the full package. The main reason you should have them is for the three new systems they implement: empire quests, cosmic events, and mystical city upgrades. To briefly summarize, they all introduce elements that break up the predictability of matches by encouraging you to make more on-the-fly decisions, in order to gain advantages over your opponents, progress faster / more easily, and specialize your cities. I couldn't imagine playing the game without at least one of those systems, preferably all three, after seeing how they affect gameplay.
When Age of Wonders III was free-to-keep in 2019, I downloaded it because I wanted to give strategy games a try. The only one I had played prior to that was Heroes of Might and Magic III (another series quite similar to Age of Wonders), when I was a kid, and that ended up being an incredibly lucky scenario. I found not only one of the most engaging gameplay loops I've ever experienced, but also now have a gateway into a genre that I previously viewed as unapproachable. I now want to play other strategy games like Total War: Warhammer and Endless Legend, both of which I might've not even given a consideration had I never discovered the enjoyment I get out of this game.
I'll leave it at that, so I can return to my match and put another hundred more hours into this game. And another hundred after that... and another hundred after that, too.

Review from Steam

This game has multiple different layers to the fun with a strategic map and tactical battles, similar to Total War except it's turn based. There's even an RPG aspect to it which allows you to customize a leader and level him up along with a group of trusted heroes. There's even the option to add an Underground layer to a standard map, giving an additional dimension of strategy to explore. The fantasy setting is very in depth too. You can play all sorts of classic fantasy races such as Elves, Orcs, Goblins and Halflings or even some unusual ones such as Frostlings and Draconians. Whatever race you chose can be mixed with a variety of different classes such as a stealth assassin Rogue, or a nature loving Arch Druid, or a dark deplorable Necromancer. Building your own leader and choosing his traits leaves room for roleplaying that character through a save, making him good or evil or just a fiery force to be reckoned with. The DLCs are great additional content to get started with, but even if you eventually get bored, there's a very interesting modding community to explore. I'd highly recommend this game to anyone who enjoys strategy in a fantasy setting, especially if you have a lot of free time.

Review from Steam

This game allows you to EVICT other races from a settlement.
It is a graphical upgrade of the previous game with some mechanics added or removed. Campaign storyline was alright but every campaign map must be played with RUSH RUSH RUSH strategy. Which isn't very fun.
Random map is where it is most enjoyable. The research resource unit becomes worthless at late game and is a missed opportunity compared to the previous game.

Review from Steam

Been playing AOW3 for years and I seem to keep going back as its a different game every single time. Still love to play it after so long as its turn based and I can stop at any moment. Give it a 8 or of 10. Wish they would put out version 4.

Review from Steam

Before I played Age of Wonders III i had a small wee wee, no girlfriend no friends and absolutely no will to live. None of these things have changed, but the game is pretty good.