GamingReview: Siege Survival: Gloria Victis

Review: Siege Survival: Gloria Victis

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Your home and its people are under attack. Enemies invade and pillage mercilessly. Everyone and everything else has already fallen. It’s now down to one last stronghold to keep the invaders at bay.

Siege Survival

While the soldiers fight to protect the last castle they have left, they’re running dangerously low on supplies, weapons, and defenses. It’s now up to you, a handful of civilians whose lives have been uprooted, to keep them going. The civilians now need to work through the trauma of invasion to support the troops protecting them and the keep.

Siege survival: Gloria Victis is a brutal exercise in survival and defense against mounting odds. It has you make difficult choices and manage your resources to not only ensure your survival, but the victory of the soldiers fighting the encroaching enemy.

Choices, Choices, Choices

From the moment you first jump in, Siege Survival has you make a terrible choice. Between protecting fleeing civilians or hoarding supplies that will be helpful to your starting position. This is the first of many tough choices. Not only those that are directly presented to you, such as choosing between people and suppiles. But also in which resources to use and when

Will you prioritize food and medicine, or weapons and armour? Will you rest your civilians, saving their energy for the next day’s work? Or will you spend your nights scavenging for anything that might help?

Even indecision can contribute to your failure. There was a situation where I only had enough food for two of three groups. The hungry farm animals that provide us with eggs, and fertiliser for our crops. The soldiers who need rations to stave off exhaustion and sickness. And the civilians who gather resources, build structures and scout enemy troops. I took too long to make my choice and not only did one of my animals die, but my troops were weakened through starvation and thirst, ahead of the next wave of enemies.

Day and Night

Siege Survival presents the brutal reality of invasion and the ensuing battles. The enemy is tireless and merciless, every day presents the possibility of another attack. You make use of the daylight to prepare yourself and your troops: building, repairing, crafting, farming, and cooking. All while managing the needs of the people, ensuring they get enough rest, food, and water. 

While the day is a vital part of your survival it would be impossible to prepare without the night’s activities. When the sun sets you have the choice to rest or scout. Scouting provides useful information on the enemy, such as defense stats and how many days until they mount their next attack. Though, most importantly under the cover of night you scavenge in the ruined streets of your now occupied city. 

This was a surprisingly enjoyable part of the gameplay. While searching for resources, you also come across random events, such as a grieving man you have the choice to steal from. Perhaps you leave the man to his grief or you justify your theft with the soldier’s needs. You clear blocked pathways with a shovel, and clear out rotting corpses with burning torches, all of which take up slots in your already limited backpack. 

While scavenging the city you also have enemy patrols to watch out for. Avoiding their gazes by hiding in bushes, or attacking them head on. Every action takes time, which there is never enough of. You’re always on the clock and the rising sun is a constant reminder of the coming day’s work.

Through all of this I gained some real sympathy for the civilians and troops in this world. Every night a mad scramble to get enough resources and every day spent preparing for the inevitable battles to come, while trying to keep your people alive. There’s rarely a moment for rest, with civilians sleeping in shifts to ensure preparation, often barely scraping by with enough. 

We Survived! What Now?

Siege Survival had some surprisingly addictive gameplay. There’s never no downtime when everything rests on your shoulders. You’ll be carefully considering every choice and every allocation of materials, if you want to survive. However, unless you’ve fallen in love with the gameplay, there might not be much of a reason to jump back in once you’ve completed the campaign. 

There are a fair amount of choices between game modes. Either increasing or decreasing the difficulty, making for fewer or more available resources, time in a day, frequency of attacks, etc. You also get modes that emphasize the scavenging or enemy attack segments. However, these never felt like enough alterations in gameplay to lure me back, once it was all said and done.

A Lot of the Same

While the gameplay loop is engrossing, it’s that very loop that also works to the detriment of its replay value. You spend each day in the castle keep, and each night in the occupied city. You see the same sights and landmarks which inevitably becomes repetitive. One might be able to overlook this if there was something to feast the eyes on. However, Siege Survival is filled with the same kinds of environments and locations and designs. While the dark and muddy looking visuals lend themselves well to the medieval setting. It does not give the player any visual stimuli after the initial hours of gameplay.

Siege Survival: Gloria Victis is a gripping game of survival and resource management. It’s brutal portrayal of the costs of medieval defense is unrelenting, and its gameplay hooks you from the first little fireplace built. 

SUMMARY

+ Great resource management
+ Atmosphere of despair is immersive
+ Addictive gameplay
- Not enough replay value
- Not much visual diversity

(Reviewed on PC)
Jonah Ehlers
Jonah Ehlers
A lover of films, dogs and cooking, even though I'm terrible at it most days. Ever since my first console (the legendary PS2) I have had an immense love for Video games. It has given me some of my favourite memories, my closest friends and countless hours of fun.

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+ Great resource management <br> + Atmosphere of despair is immersive <br> + Addictive gameplay <br> - Not enough replay value <br> - Not much visual diversity <br> <br> (Reviewed on PC)Review: Siege Survival: Gloria Victis