Northgard: Is It Worth It?
Real Time Strategy
Northgard is a real time strategy game with a viking/norse theme. To be honest I was a bit confused when I started playing the game. I couldn’t access a tutorial, even though I know I say I hate tutorials. I kind of need them when it comes to an RTS though. There was definitely a level of challenge I had to overcome when playing the game. Were these challenges worth it though? Let’s find out.
Honestly, the game play was definitely interesting. My favorite RTS of all time was Warcraft 3, so that is what I was used to in terms of RTS games. Northgard though definitely hit some points I wasn’t expecting. With this game you have villagers, like most RTS games, they gather and build. What is sets Northgard apart from other RTS games is the fact that you assign your villagers to tasks. You build specific buildings and then you assign your villagers to them. I am used to building a structure and then recruiting units through that structure. Also in Northgard you need to build specifically to the terrain. Default you can build 5 structures on your land, and can develop the land to build more. To go into further detail you can build a “scout” building and also use those scouts to find more land. Finding land allows you to colonize said land to build more structures. It sounds more complicated than it really is.
The combat in Northgard is pretty simple. You control your units and you right click for actions. You can recruits axe throwers, warriors, skirmishers, and shield bearers. This gives you some options for your Norse army. Each one of the mentioned units has a specific building associated with it and can only have 2 villagers assigned per structure. What sets Northgard apart from other RTS games is the random encounters. That’s right, your peaceful village can be attacked by Draugrs brought in through a portal. If wolves get to close to your village they will also try to hunt down your townspeople. To top it all off you have to also fight other clans that may be more powerful then you, so plan accordingly. I was absolutely not expecting the random encounters, and it was very interesting when they arrived.
Northgard has pretty standard graphics for an RTS game. Honestly the game felt pretty polished and didn’t feel clunky in anyway. I have always been a fan of the top down view that is in most RTS and MOBA games. That mixed with the scenery in Northgard made me really feel like a Warchief or Commander. Not only do you have to protect your village and vanquish your foes, you also have to make sure the day to day operations are running well. Much like civilization you have food stores and happiness levels. Keeping my villagers happy and fed was a whole other challenge.
So, is Northgard worth it? I would give this game a resounding yes. This game hits all the classic RTS elements, but builds on them. Your villagers have to be assigned roles and need their own purpose in life. What I didn’t like about this game was the lack of tutorial, but it really wasn’t incredibly difficult to figure out. The combat is easy to grasp, but assigning villagers was difficult to pick up. The game is gorgeous and you really need to get out there and get a copy of Nothgard. Fight your way through hordes of enemies and become a master Warchief in Northgard!