Conquer the old continent
Europe in 19th century was full of warfare and interesting events. Sadly, gaming industry tends to forget that and focus on more "popular" eras like the middle ages, Roman period or modern time. One can seldom enjoy the many intricacies and subtlety of infantry line in face of imminent conflict. Standing steadily in front of a musket row is not a pleasant experience i'm sure, but it does provide a unique experience when transferred to video games (to me at least). That is why Cossack II: Napoleonic War was such a rewarding experience. You get to bring huge armies in conflict, while constantly watching their firing range, position and reserve troops you might need. It is something any real at-home general relishes. The game revolves around conflict that took place in early 19th century Europe, when Napoleon began his campaign to conquer the continent. Player is able to choose one of the major powers of the time and fight his way to ultimate victory. You can opt to play through the single player campaign mode that is rather difficult, and lacking any convincing storyline, or choose the mode that should be most interesting to wanna-be generals, Battle for Europe. In this mode game plays out on two fields. You have strategic map, where you move your armies and upgrade your empire, and the battlefields where you lead your armies. Pretty much the same concept as Medieval: Total War. There are some major differences however. In Cossack II, there is a lot less strategic decisions to be made on the strategic map, because most of the game is revolved around battles, which can appeal to those that like faster gameplay. You don't have to spend many hours upgrading your buildings just to get that edge over your opponents, you can focus on the tactics and devise new strategies to beat the AI on the battlefield. Graphics are 2d, but very nicely done, just enough so you can enjoy the overall experience. Music score is awesome, and it blends right in with the magnitude of your quest for power. Sound quality on the other hand could be a bit better. Quite enjoyable game, if you're interested in that period.