Spartan: Total Warrior Review

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An appropriately epic but repetitive historical actioner


Developed by the team behind the groundbreaking Total War series, Spartan replaces the cerebral action of its PC cousins with an action-packed adventure where you guide a lone warrior as he slaughters a cast of thousands. But while the game does a fine job of creating chaotic battles and an epic sense of scale, the repetitive action and linear story undermine Spartan’s triumphs.

On first impressions Spartan is breathtaking, thrusting players into enormous skirmishes where hundreds of warriors can be seen clashing on the battlefields as the Greek forces try to stop the Roman Army from advancing. But while the turbulent action looks similar to Koei’s Dynasty Warriors, success requires more than the ability to hammer attack buttons until your fingers fracture, instead asking players to work alongside their computer-controlled comrades to complete tasks such as bombing a Roman fort, or figure out how to tackle the towering enemies in the game’s dramatic set pieces.

But despite it’s glossy exterior and sumptuous graphics, Spartan’s brutal action soon becomes repetitive, and the challenges that force your down a narrow pathway are at odds with the branching plots of this season’s biggest hits.