Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Cult of Mithras adds fantasy elements to Legion Arena

I see Slitherine, producers of Legion and Legion Arena, are preparing to release an add-on that introduces such fantasy elements as demons and shadow warriors to their Roman strategy title Legion Arena. Although I am usually not that interested in fantasy titles, Cult of Mithras may contain enough ancient mythology to be worth taking a look at it.

From the official website:

"In this glorious year of 27 BC, Octavian has been crowned Emperor Augustus of Rome. His enemies lie defeated, his Empire basks in victory. Yet in one corner of the Empire, Spain still resists and troops are dispatched to subdue the region once and for all. You are picked to lead the men. This is your chance to prove yourself - this is your destiny.

But fate is a fickle master. On route to Spain, your men are ambushed. A tribe still loyal to Pompey's perhaps? There is no time to think, only fight! The enemy are many, you are unprepared. It is all you can do to fend them off as you yell orders to your men. A soldier is shouting at you "General! General, are you alright!"

Blood stains your clothing. By the Gods, I am wounded! And then there is only darkness...

Where am I? You are in the saddle. There are shouts. There is confusion... Men are preparing for battle. Another foe, so soon? What's happening? A soldier awaits your instructions "Sir, the Gauls are attacking. We are ready to fight."

Timendi causa est nescire - Ignorance is the cause of fear

The battle is over. You have defeated the enemy, but not your confusion. You summon two of your most loyal officers. Centurion Pollius reports "Sir, the men have been experiencing strange... very strange things. They arrived here by... they do not know how they arrived here. They cannot remember..."

You reply "Is this experience shared by all the men?"

Pollius confirms "Yes sir. All of us, sir."

"What are your thoughts on the matter my friends?"

Centurion Asivius offers "Sir, some of the men believe it is a curse."

"They are nervous, sir. And scared." Pollius agrees

"There is no curse! The Gods favour our venture. Tell them that." you say fiercely, as if to convince yourself

"Yes Sir!" they both shout as they salute.

...But do they? The Gods have never been predictable allies. You examine the eyes of your men. They do not look convinced, but they will do as you command.

"Is there anything else Asivius?"

"Yes sir, there is something. Groups of soldiers have been appearing from the wilderness. They are also... confused.."

"Feed them and employ them. Dismissed."

...Mystery and War do not make good bed-fellows, this much I know. But there is no time to think on it further. Scouts report more Celts approaching?"

Cura ut valeas - Take care

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