Paraworld stood also on the list of interesting RTS games this year. I myself was very curious too of this world full of dinos, but unfortunately the end result is disappointing.
Paraworld is a parallel world next to ours, where dinosaurs haven’t been extinct and now they live more less peaceful next to human kind. The story in the campaign revolves around three scientists who get lured into this world by a malicious organisation called SEAS. Nothing special, just one cliché after the other with bad cut scenes. It still comes in handy as tutorial and a way to get known the different races better.
The three different races are: the Norsemen, the Dustriders and the Dragon Clan. The Norsemen are some kind of Vikings with especially strong close combat units and a bonus in snowy landscapes. The Dustriders are nomads and can break off their buildings to build them back up somewhere else without costs. They’re more the attacking kind of people that lives in the desert. The Dragon Clan are the strongest defenders. Next to a whole array of towers they can also build a series of traps. So as for abilities and looks there are quite some differences, but the units look more like each other, luckily there still is some variation.
Dinosaurs come in all kinds and sizes, but unfortunately there are no flying beasts. The creators have given some paleontological authenticity to these animals and so you can encounter the notorious T-Rex or the Tricaterops, respectively the Dustriders’ Titan and the Norsemen’s Titan.
The wild animals are peaceful or don’t hesitate to attack your villagers. When that’s the case you may not forget to destroy the nest together with the beasts ore there will constantly appear new predators. These nest also come in handy when you use dinos as a food source. A special resource are the skulls. These are points, earned with the defeating enemies and wild animals. They serve to bring units to a higher level and the Dustriders also need them to research a higher Epoch.
Next to the campaign there standard is the Skirmish mode. Here you have a choice out of three possibilities: deathmatch, domination or defender. Deathmatch is well-known: the one who defeats all his opponents, wins. Domination is another classic: conquer certain areas and then defend them. Defender means that one player with extra resources and defences takes it on against the others.
In Skirmish the A.I. can be set to one of the nine levels (nine being the strongest), in contrast with the campaign, where only easy/moderate/difficult is available. In general the A.I. offers some challenge, though some times stupid things happen, like units who get themselves trapped in the environment. This doesn’t only occur with your own units, but also with those of an A.I. player. A general way to win is building a warp gate, similar to building a wonder in other RTS games. A warp gate is actually a way to leave Paraworld and return to Earth.
The special function in this RTS is the Army Controller. This piramide on the left side shows you at a glance which you units you have, what they’re doing, how healthy they are and which level they have. With each higher Epoch your units can be brought to a highr level too, this makes them stronger. It’s particularly convenient for heroes, because with each level they offer some kind of advantage, like an extra unit, a unique building or a special ability.
But as I already mentioned, it’s a piramide, which means that for every level less units can be upgraded. With this function comes also a disadvantage. The number of slots you can see is also the numbers of units you’re allowed to have, a total of some fifty units, which is very little. It does challenge you to think strategically, but it still is a serious limitation.
Despite the nice surroundings, the game is graphically not that good, which is particularly visible in the cut scenes. In game the images are also rather rough and zooming is limited. The music is strong and the voice action is all right, there isn’t much more to say.
Personally I had expected more of this game. It looks like it that this game with all its faults was released too soon. At this moment there are much better RTS games in stores to spend your money on.