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October 13, 2023

Endless Legend - Is Endless Legend Better Than Civ 5?

Endless Legend is a fresh take on the 4X hex-based strategy genre with a touch of science fantasy that puts it in a class above Civilization V, which tries to be all things to everyone and ends up being bland and boring. EL is more like craft beer - a little tougher to get into but with some interesting and kooky aspects.

Rather than the generic city states that pop up all over the map in Civ, you're staking claim to entire named regions in Endless Legend. That helps create a sense of place for each region, and the game's lush world is a feast for the eyes. The ever-present cycle of harsh winters also adds a compelling gameplay element, punishing you with penalties for city resources and army movement as the season deepens.

Endless Legend has an impressive tech tree with multiple victory paths and several different factions that play very differently. This is in stark contrast to Civ 5 which feels more incremental, has an annoying 'rush' mentality and only really gets fun after the first era.

The way the game handles hero units is also very different from Civ. They're a key player in battle, and you can squander them on the map if you want to, but you can also upgrade them into powerful champions that give your troops major bonuses in combat and help you conquer the world. This makes them a much more valuable asset than the faceless armies of vanilla Civ, which can easily get bogged down with long unit build times and traffic jams caused by units that are too large for their hex tile.