4/11 – Romance of the Three Kingdoms XIII

Hello and welcome. My name is Katosepe and I’ll be your host for today’s Video Game of the Day.

Today’s game is one many western fans may not have heard of but it is only the latest addition to a strategy series dating all the way back to 1985. Today’s game is Romance of the Three Kingdoms 13, developed and published Koei Tecmo in 2016.

Romance of the Three Kingdoms 13, like the rest of the series, is a grand strategy game based on the novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms, which itself is based on a historical period in China in approximately 200 AD. Players can choose to play as a large number of historical figures from this period from high rulers to lower vassals. Regardless of who players choose, the goal is always the complete unification of China. Fans of the Dynasty Warriors series will be familiar with the setting and characters as that series is actually a spin-off series of Romance of the Three Kingdoms.

Similar to games such as Crusader Kings or Europa Universalis, Romance of the Three Kingdoms is played mostly through menus and statistics. Players must manage diplomacy with their neighboring leaders, trying to rise through the ranks to control more and more territory and military might. Tasks are managed by assigning people underneath the player to various jobs based on their respective skills and abilities. Players are expected to maintain food production, patrol their lands and maintain diplomatic relationships with neighbors, amongst other jobs.

Romance of the Three Kingdoms XIII also features interactive challenges and battles. Military battles are controlled similarly to a real-time strategy game, but other challenges also add variety to the gameplay. Diplomatic battles play out as 1v1 dramatised insult battles.

Romance of the Three Kingdoms XIII originally released on the Playstation 3 and 4 exclusively in Japan but has since come to the West for Playstation 4, Xbox One and PC. A Switch and Vita version have both been released in Japan but there is currently no stated release date for these ports in the west. The game has received fairly average reviews, with most of the criticism pointed at the lack of meaningful change from the previous entries. Even the more negative reviews still state that Romance of the Three Kingdoms XIII is the best jumping-on point for new fans to the series and claim that the strategy is addicting and unique.

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