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With the influence of Peter Molyneux (designer of Populous) clearly showing through, PowerMonger is one of the first of its genre to give the player real-time powers in determining the fate of a world. Set in the devastated land of Miremer, your task is to conquer territories, provide food for troops, invent weapons, trade, and recruit captains (leaders) to carry out your orders. Similar in concept to Populous, you gain access to each of the 195 territories by controlling the population and tipping the "Conquest Balance" of power scales (piled with gold) in your favor.
Diplomacy is a factor in the conquest of towns within each territory, but tipping the scales via military might is essential, as your army must match or exceed in number that of the enemy to have a chance for victory. Total annihilation of towns isn't always a good idea since you'll need to leave some forces behind to produce food, invent new weapons and items, and recruit even more military units. Strategic elements include spying on enemy territory, maintaining morale, distributing weapons, tactical advances, using various types of terrain to advantage, transporting troops, and creating alliances.
A grid of command options (similar to Populous), featuring passive, neutral, or aggressive posturing, lets you manage each campaign and give orders. With judicious use of subordinate captains (leaders), resource control, strategic planning, and perseverance, the goal of being a PowerMonger is in reach. Head-to-head play via modem is optional, as well as multi-player against computer opponents. ~ Michael L. House, All Game Guide